Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Urban Studies


School of Urban Planning and Regional Studies

Major Professor

Gladstone, David; Renne, John

Second Advisor

Villavaso, Stephen


Every thousand years or so, when the Mississippi River's sediment load lengthened and blocked the River’s route to the Gulf of Mexico, the mother stream changed course completely, finding a shorter route to the sea. Then, it built a new delta, thus spreading the gift of land creation along a wide coastline and creating the bayou region of Louisiana. However, this ancient, natural process was gradually halted by the arrival of man who settled across the River's natural floodplain (delta) and constructed levees and other structures to control the great Mississippi River. Since the 1930s, the Mississippi River Delta Basin and the coast of Louisiana have been literally losing ground. The decline of this environment is now affecting, and will continue to affect, our nation's economy, infrastructure, culture, and safety. Moreover, efforts to fix this problem are not working. My research and this thesis will address the issue of how plans without action have appeased Louisianans while the nation looses vital wetlands daily.


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