Nicholls State University and the Port of South Louisiana have announced a partnership designed to aid the future study of coastal restoration in Louisiana.
Through a cooperative endeavor agreement, the Port will allocate $18,000 for research, training and coastal restoration projects at the Nicholls Farm.
This is the 4th year in a row the Port has worked with Nicholls to support statewide restoration efforts.
“It’s important for everyone to get involved in coastal protection and coastal restoration,” says Paul Aucoin, executive director of the Port. “Our future depends on it, and this contribution is our small way of contributing to that effort.”
The Nicholls Farm is growing and is a somewhat unknown local treasure.
The 277-acre farm is 3 miles south of the campus. The property serves as an environmental research and education center for Nicholls and its other partners.
Housed at the farm are labs, classrooms, greenhouses, shade houses, storage barns and a 7.5 acre pond for wetland plant production.
Nicholls biology students and faculty have spearheaded coastal restoration efforts through the Farm. They have grown, harvested and planted over 30,000 plants in coastal habitats in recent years.
“This gives us a lot of flexibility to do what we need and be able to respond to the needs of the community,” said Dr. Allyse Ferrara, Jerry Ledet Endowed Professor of Environmental Biology. “We greatly appreciate the support from the Port of South Louisiana.”
Headquartered in LaPlace, the Port of South Louisiana is the premier sea gateway for U.S. export and import traffic.
The stretch of river accounts for 53 industries and 30,000 jobs.
"If we don’t do this, we will lose our coast. We will lose Thibodaux. We will lose Louisiana,” Aucoin said. “We are not in the business of coastal restoration. So we help by contributing to programs like Nicholls State University that are.”