Expert Report

Delta Waters: Research to Support Integrated Water and Environmental Management in the Lower Mississippi River (2013)

Each report is produced by a committee of experts selected by the Academy to address a particular statement of task and is subject to a rigorous, independent peer review; while the reports represent views of the committee, they also are endorsed by the Academy. Learn more on our expert consensus reports.

Concerns about hurricane protection and ecological health in the lower Mississippi River delta have grown in the 21st century, as ongoing challenges have been compounded by events including Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the Deepwater Horizon explosion. The Water Institute of the Gulf was established in Baton Rouge in 2011 to provide scientific and engineering advice to the state of Louisiana for a variety of coastal restoration, ecosystem management, and hurricane protection projects. The scientific capacity that the Water Institute will build is envisioned to eventually serve communities throughout the lower Mississippi River delta, as well as in large deltaic river systems in other parts of the world. This report from the National Research Council is designed to guide the Water Institute’s strategic planning process by identifying research alternatives and opportunities for the Water Institute. The report promotes a systematic human and environmental systems approach to scientific research that supports integrated water and environmental resources management.