"Managing the Impacts of Climate Change and Land Loss on Native American Archaeological Sites in Coastal Louisiana” Led by G&A Faculty – Kory Konsoer and Jill Trepanier

Project Summary:

Native American archaeological sites on Louisiana’s Gulf Coast are endangered and being destroyed by sea-level rise, coastal erosion, and climate change. These cultural resources are crucial sources of information and represent the unique heritage of coastal Louisiana. In partnership with the Chitimacha Tribe of Louisiana and working with tribal communities, a team of geographers, archaeologists, climate scientists, and engineers from Louisiana State University, Tulane University, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and the National Park Service will assess climate change vulnerabilities and plan for the impending loss of these irreplaceable cultural resources. Since site destruction is ongoing and increasing due to climate change, this project is extremely urgent. Federal and State agencies, resource managers, coastal communities, and regional stakeholders will benefit from up-to-date information on endangered cultural resources and climate-informed management. The public will benefit from increased knowledge and appreciation of the deep history, cultural heritage, and ecology of Louisiana’s Gulf Coast, which also support development of the cultural economy. Our interdisciplinary team will work with tribal and coastal communities in cultural resource management planning and advise resource managers and stakeholders on where and how to direct limited resources. This collaborative research will produce a climate-informed CRM plan for the future of Louisiana’s imperiled coast. This will be accomplished through consultations, workshops, reconnaissance, site monitoring, vulnerability assessment, and development of appropriate climate adaptation measures.