Cost-efficacy in wetland restoration projects in coastal louisiana

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The Coastal Wetlands Planning Protection and Restoration Act (CWPPRA) provides one of the largest sources of U.S. funding for wetland restoration. A preliminary economic analysis of the CWPPRA program questioned the program's selection of cost efficient wetland restoration projects, specifically related to the funding of barrier island projects, and recommended a more rigorous statistical analysis of the data (Aust 2006). We conducted an analysis to determine what available variables, such as wetland loss, influence CWPPRA project selection for funding. We found that the program was selecting costeffective projects overall. Cost efficacy varied significantly by restoration project type, with barrier island restoration having the greatest cost/benefit. We present possible justifications for funding these projects despite the higher cost/benefit. This paper will help participants of this restoration program and others in evaluating how projects are developed, evaluated and selected for funding. © Society of Wetland Scientists 2011.

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