Because a football field of land disappears into the Gulf of Mexico every 100 minutes, Restore the Mississippi River Delta — a conservation coalition consisting of the Environmental Defense Fund, National Audubon Society, National Wildlife Federation, Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, and the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation — will debut a commercial during the Super Bowl on February 3 that urges viewers to take necessary action to protect and restore an area that is vital to the entire nation.
The commercial, titled Protect Our Coast. Protect Their Future, was filmed across south Louisiana and features a diverse group of children from the region who are directly impacted by the coastal land loss crisis. It will air in the New Orleans demographic area (about 1.5 million people in south Louisiana and southwest Mississippi) during the commercial break at the end of the third quarter.
The campaign encourages viewers to consider how the decisions being made today about Louisiana’s coast will affect the future of our children and grandchildren and add their voices to a chorus of people demanding action. The coalition is hoping to bring awareness to the issue of coastal land loss as told through the children’s voices because, ultimately, this is about their future.
Watch the 30-second spot
In addition to the ad’s debut on Sunday, Restore the Mississippi River Delta will run the ad for an additional six weeks, accompanied by an online advocacy campaign through social media, YouTube, and at RestoreTheCoast.org.
“These kids are the real stars of Sunday’s game,” said Steve Cochran, campaign director for Restore the Mississippi River Delta. “Their message, however, is one that will resonate long after the game ends. The restoration and protection of Louisiana’s coast is for their future and the future of our entire region.”
Louisiana’s wetlands feed and fuel the nation, and the erosion of these ecosystems is a significant conservation issue for the nation. Louisiana contains five of the nation’s 15 largest shipping ports by tonnage, provides 30 percent of commercial fishing landings in the lower 48 states, and generates $9.3 billion per year in tourism.
According to Restore the Mississippi Delta:
- More than 400 species of birds call coastal Louisiana home.
- The region provides critical breeding, wintering and migratory stopover habitat for 100 million birds each year.
- 40 percent of migratory birds in North America spend part of their life in coastal Louisiana.
- 10 million ducks and geese winter or stopover in coastal Louisiana every year — or 70 percent of the waterfowl that use the Mississippi and Central flyways.
To date, Louisiana has lost 1.2 million acres of land. Recent catastrophes, such as Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and the BP oil disaster exacerbated this coastal crisis. Without action, Louisiana is projected to lose up to an additional 4,000 square miles over the next 50 years.
There are many ways to get involved in the fight to save coastal Louisiana. From volunteering to contacting elected officials to attending public meetings and other events, anyone can make a difference in restoring Louisiana’s coast. To view the campaign or get involved, visit RestoreTheCoast.org.