Bayou Lafourche clean-up encouraged

Staff Report
Bayou LaFourche, Donaldsonville.

     THIBODAUX – Due to the recent cancellation of the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program’s (BTNEP) Bayou Lafourche Cleanup, BTNEP would like to encourage all volunteers, land owners and business owners to clean up the bayou in preparation for BTNEP’s Paddle Bayou Lafourche event beginning March 31.

     The cleanup event which was scheduled on March 12, was cancelled due to the threat of inclement weather. The event was projected to clean up 106 miles of the bayou from Donaldsonville to Leeville. According to Ben Malbrough, Bayou Lafourche Freshwater District Director, the purpose of the cleanup is to raise awareness about marine debris and clean the body of water that provides the drinking water for over 300,000 people.

     Since the event will not be rescheduled, volunteers who had registered for the event and who are still interested in cleaning up upon their own time, are asked to contact their site captain or BTNEP for data cards and shirts. Volunteers will be responsible for correctly disposing the trash that is retrieved.

     “Although the Bayou Lafourche Cleanup was cancelled, it is still important to keep Bayou Lafourche clean and free of debris,” said Alma Robichaux, Education/Outreach Coordinator. “We would like to encourage residents and business owners to clean up along the bayou side on a regular basis.”

     On March 31 to April 3, paddlers from the area, as well as, around the country will be joining BTNEP for its 15th Annual Paddle Bayou Lafourche event. A clean bayou will benefit the paddlers by making their trip more pleasant. It will also leave a great impression on those coming from out of state.

     “About half of our paddlers are coming from other states,” said Kristy Monier, BTNEP Media/Public Relations Coordinator. “We want to leave a good impression on those people with the hopes they will want to visit our area again.”

     BTNEP is one of the 28 national estuary programs in the United States. All or parts of 16 Louisiana parishes are located in the Barataria-Terrebonne Estuary system. The organization was established under the EPA Clean Water Act to protect coastal resources.     

BTNEP is a partnership of government, businesses, scientists, conservation organizations, agricultural interests and individuals for the preservation, protection and restoration for the Barataria Terrebonne National Estuary in southeast Louisiana.