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Damaged trailers in floodwater after Hurricane Ida in Pointe-au-Chien, Louisiana, Sept. 2, 2021. 

Damaged trailers in floodwater after Hurricane Ida in Pointe-au-Chien, Louisiana, Sept. 2, 2021. 

Photographer: Mark Felix/Bloomberg

Recycled Glass ‘Sand’ Could Help Protect Louisiana’s Vanishing Coast

A New Orleans nonprofit and Tulane University researchers are using mounds of pulverized glass to try to slow down coastal land loss. 

Before sunrise on April 30, a group of 35 volunteers from New Orleans packed up a truck with 12,000 pounds of recycled glass and made their way some 40 miles south of the city to the low-lying lands of the Pointe-au-Chien Indian Tribe.

Over the course of the day, those sacks of pulverized glass were gradually deposited to construct waterways, gravel drains and flower beds across the tribe’s land, which sits alongside the Gulf of Mexico on the southern edge of Louisiana.