LA SAFE sets meetings in 3 parishes

Louisiana’s Strategic Adaptations for Future Environments program, known as LA SAFE, will share draft strategies of projects with residents of Jefferson, Plaquemines and St. Tammany parishes in coming weeks.

In this fourth round of engagement, residents will be able to review and provide feedback on the draft strategies developed by the LA SAFE team for a long-term process to adapt to a changing coastline.

The planning team will take these suggestions into consideration as they complete the design of an adaptation strategy for each parish that addresses challenges and opportunities unique to that parish.

LA SAFE is managed by the Louisiana Office of Community Development’s Disaster Recovery Unit in partnership with the Foundation for Louisiana’s Coastal Resilience Leverage Fund.

Here are the upcoming meetings:

JEFFERSON PARISH

Tuesday, 5 p.m.–6:30 p.m., at the Mel Ott Recreation Center, 2301 Belle Chasse Highway, Gretna.

Wednesday, 4:30 p.m.–6 p.m., at the East Bank Regional Library (Jefferson Room), 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie.

ST. TAMMANY PARISH

Oct. 24, 5 p.m.–6:30 p.m., at the Bogue Falaya Hall, 317 N. Jefferson Ave., Covington.

Oct. 26, 5 p.m.–6:30 p.m., at Slidell Municipal Auditorium, 2056 Second St., Slidell.

PLAQUEMINES PARISH

Nov. 6, 4 p.m.–6 p.m., Vietnamese community meeting, Buras Community Center/YMCA, 36342 La. 11, Buras.

Nov. 6, 6 p.m.–8 p.m., Cambodian community meeting, Buras Community Center/YMCA, 36342 La. Hwy. 11, Buras.

Nov. 9, 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m., at the Port Sulphur YMCA/Community Center, 278 Civic Drive, Port Sulphur. 

More information is available at LASAFE.la.gov or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, all at @LiveLaSafe.

Participants sought for City Park BioBlitz

Following a summer event that drew more than 300 participants, Loyola University once again is hosting a BioBlitz at City Park.

Volunteer scientists, coastal researchers, naturalists, teachers, students, families and interested residents of all ages are encouraged to join the free event from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, or to participate in a special evening bat-watching event, in which participants will monitor and identify bats in the area using bat tracking devices.

A BioBlitz, also known as a biological inventory or biological census, is an intense period of surveying that focuses on finding and identifying as many species as possible in a specific area over a short period of time.

The BioBlitz New Orleans City Park is designed to assess the full range of species in the 1,300-acre park, which includes lagoons, historic oak trees, fishing ponds, fields and botanical gardens.

People of all ages and levels of expertise are invited to engage in the process, either sharing their expertise or expanding their knowledge by working hand-in-hand with a variety of scientists.

The aim is to identify as many species as possible and enlarge an existing list of both native and introduced flora and fauna. Data gathered will be used by City Park to prepare for the future.

“Information gathered during the summer event, and since, has helped to show where native species may be disappearing and where invasive species may be gaining traction. Through the upcoming BioBlitz New Orleans City Park, we hope to expand that knowledge,” said Bob Thomas, director of the Loyola Center for Environmental Communication and a board member of the City Park Improvement Association and the New Orleans Botanical Garden Foundation.

Professors in Loyola's environmental sciences program and other scientists and naturalists will lead teams of volunteers as they gather observations and information on plants, birds, insects, reptiles, mammals and other wildlife in the park. 

They will lead groups focused on specific topics, from birds to butterflies as they document species in the park’s Couturie Forest, Wisner Track, prairie and grassland areas, aquatic areas, Scout Island, levees, mixed deciduous areas, and the park’s golf, disc golf, soccer and softball courses.

Participants are asked to register at cas.loyno.edu/environment/bioblitz.