If you have ever had a chance to go out to one of our barrier islands you know how beautiful they are. They provide a source of recreation for thousands of local residents as well as visitors each year. The barrier islands also serve another purpose. They are the first defense in protecting the Mississippi coast line from dangerous hurricanes.
The islands with their sand dunes take some of the punch out of the churning sea as it moves toward the mainland. However Hurricanes Katrina, Frederick, Camille and others have chipped away at the size of the islands and their dunes, weakening this first line of defense.
U.S. Senator Roger Wicker was on the coast this past week discussing a federal plan to replenish the islands to pre-Camille conditions. The replenishment would include Deer Island which provides offshore protection for Biloxi.
No doubt the entire venture will be an expensive project and take years to complete. But anyone who has lived on the coast for a while knows how important the barrier islands are. We applaud Senator Wicker for working with local officials on a plan to protect the coast line from future hurricanes.
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