"The hundreds of miles of wetlands along Louisiana's coastline are a vital asset in the ongoing struggle to reduce the impact of powerful hurricanes and storms. These swamps and marshes provide a natural buffer against waves and storm surges - and even protect people and property farther inland. But Louisiana's wetlands are disappearing. Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, for example, transformed 217 miles of marsh into open water in Louisiana, with much of the loss occurring in St. Bernard and Plaquemines parishes. The U.S. Geological Survey reports Louisiana's wetlands make up about 40 percent of the continental U.S. wetlands, but about 80 percent of wetland losses. Ongoing protection and restoration is needed to prevent the shore from moving inland."
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