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NEW ORLEANS -- A new random survey of people in Louisiana finds that 74 percent believe the loss of coastal wetlands is the most important issue in their lifetime.

The America's Wetland Foundation commissioned the random Internet survey of 400 Louisianians last month.

Nearly all voters, 97 percent, agreed it will take a team effort of government, industry, education and nonprofit groups to restore the coasts of Louisiana and Texas.

Ninety-five percent of those surveyed agreed that conflicts between energy production and environmental protection have become too politically divisive and leaders need to cooperate more.

And 90percent agree the federal government should be responsible for protecting coastal areas that supply the United States energy.

The America's Wetland Foundation is funded in part by the oil and gas industry.

'The takeaway is that we are running out of time. We are the last generation that can solve the problem, and if we don't figure out new funding streams and a new mechanism, we're going to lose a third of the state of Louisiana,' said Val Marmillion of America's Wetland Foundation

The survey did not directly ask voters about the Eastbank Levee Board's lawsuit calling for the oil and gas industry to repair damage it caused to the wetlands.

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