The Atchafalaya Basin

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basin called the Atchafalaya lies three hundred miles up the Mississippi River. It is above New Orleans and north of Baton Rouge. Most ships in Louisiana drop out of the water at this bay. Due to the location of this bay being in Louisiana, it is known as a Cajun territory, “The adjacent terrain is Cajun country, in a geographical sense the apex of the French Acadian world, which forms a triangle in southern Louisiana...The people of the local parishes would call this the apex of Cajun country in every possible sense-” (McPhee 1). Louisiana is considered to be one of the biggest Cajun spots ever, surrounded by bayous and swamps all over.

If it were not for the Mississippi River, Louisiana, nor the Atchafalaya Basin would exist. The sand
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Industries such as Texaco, Exxon, Shell, and Reynolds Metals moved in to Louisiana due to the convenience of navigation and fresh water around (McPhee 3). These industries helped make the river popular and known for its importance, “A sustainable restoration of the Mississippi River Delta is a good investment with a high rate of return. Gaining ground is the most successful economic strategy” (Batker). Plenty of money was brought in due to all of the companies that depended on the water from the Mississippi River. There was an attempt to have the Mississippi River captured but the Rabalais that works for the US Army Corps of Engineers tried to prevent it. A film was made that showed the efforts of doing so. Text says, “We are fighting Mother Nature…It’s a battle we have to fight day by day, year by year; the health of our economy depends on victory” (McPhee 3). The goal was to stop and slow down the flow of the river before too much of it reached other areas like the Atchafalaya bay or flooded…show more content…
It controls the distribution of flow between the Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers” (Kazmann and Johnson 1). The structures of the Old River played an important role in preventing the Mississippi River from changing course by controlling flows diverted into the Atchafalaya (McPhee 6). The person in control of this was LeRoy Dugas. He had been a part of working for the Old River since 1963. He once said, “‘maybe they’re right,’ he repeated. ‘We feel that we can hold the river. We’re going to try. Whenever you try to control nature, you’ve got one strike against you’” (McPhee 6). Even LeRoy Dugas, someone that spent many years working for a river, understands the struggles of trying to defeat nature’s
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