The Times-Picayune will create a Louisiana Coastal Reporting Team in early 2017 dedicated to in-depth coverage of the state’s ongoing, devastating land loss.

Award-winning environment reporter Mark Schleifstein and state news editor Drew Broach will lead the new team, which also will include contributions from veteran outdoors reporter Todd Masson and photographer/videographer Ted Jackson. Schleifstein and Jackson previously collaborated on “Oceans of Trouble: Are the World’s Fisheries Doomed?,” which won the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for public service, and The Times-Picayune and NOLA.com staffs’ 2005 Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of Hurricane Katrina.

Additionally, The Times-Picayune will add two full-time environmental journalists who will work exclusively on the Louisiana Coastal Reporting Team.  A national search to identify and retain these two journalists is underway.

“There’s no more critical issue facing Louisiana than the erosion of our coast,” said Mark Lorando, editor of The Times-Picayune and vice-president of content for NOLA.com. “This team will dive deep and ask the tough questions. How sound is the state’s $50 billion coastal master plan? How accurate are the projections? Where’s all that money going? Who will be affected, and how? What’s the impact on our economy, our culture and the quality of life of our residents? The answers will resonate for generations.”

$8.3 billion less annual surge damage seen in new coast plan

Readers should expect to see reports from The Times-Picayune coastal team in print and on NOLA.com beginning in March 2017.

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