Bayou La Batre, Ala. (WKRG)- Construction continues on a new barrier to restore and preserve Bayou La Batre’s Lightning Point.
They just finished installing one and a half miles of breakwaters around the mouth of the navigation channel. This will help protect the shoreline from effects of future storms. News 5 Meteorologist Colleen Peterson spoke with Judy Haner, Marine Program Director of the Nature Conservancy in Alabama, to get more details.
“We are extremely excited at how far we have come,” Judy explained.
The Nature Conservancy broke ground on this project back in April 2019. They partnered with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Alabama Power to help get this project off the ground.
“Our contractors have been really dynamic, they’ve figured out how to instead of do some of these parts of the project in sequence they actually figured how to do them in concert,” Judy said.
Major events, such as BP oil spills and Hurricane Katrina, damaged the shoreline and affected shrimping in the area. Bayou La Batre is called “Alabamas Seafood Capital” and this new restoration project will help keep that title strong.
“We are actually transforming this community along with the site,” Judy explained.
This project will also create 40 acres of coastal habitats ranging from marshes, tidal weeks, shrubs- shrubs and shell hash beaches that support a wide range of fish, shellfish and birds. Judy explains the next steps in the project.
“We are clearing out the public access areas and looking at how they are going to manage public access areas in the future,” Judy said. “It’s really exciting and every time we are down here we get to talk to the community and see how excited they are.”
This project is expected to be completed by the end of this upcoming summer.