Local Hero: Richie Blink
One man is trying to restore the protective barrier and the native freshwater species in New Orleans’ wetlands.
When Hurricane Katrina slammed into New Orleans in 2005, a long-feared prophesy came true.
Decades of industrial development and dike building had prevented silt and mud from flowing into area bayous, depriving the city of a wetlands “sponge” that soaked up much of the storm surge before it got to New Orleans.
Now the efforts to restore that protective barrier are in high gear.
There are a multitude of projects, led by Richard “Richie” Blink, designed to replant areas with marsh trees and grasses and then bring Mississippi River water, silt and mud into them. His aim is to rebuild the city’s defensive perimeter and bring back many of the native freshwater species that disappeared through the intrusion of the sea.
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