Tulane University researchers recently sought the answer to a question that coastal-restoration advocates usually avoid: What happens to people and towns if the state fails in its efforts to prevent the Gulf of Mexico from swallowing southeastern Louisiana?

Their findings were not encouraging.

Even if the 50-year, $50 billion master plan works as intended, they concluded, a large number of residents will be forced out of their homes by floodwaters due to rising sea levels and sinking land.

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