Jefferson, Plaquemines consider filing lawsuits ~Jeff Adelson, New Orleans Advocate
~Even as Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration launched an
all-out assault this year against a state agency’s lawsuit accusing
energy companies of destroying coastal wetlands, officials in the
Republican strongholds of Jefferson and Plaquemines parishes were
quietly preparing their own cases aimed at forcing the oil and gas
industry to repair the damage it allegedly has done in those areas.
In coming weeks, both parishes’ councils could file their own suits
centered around allegations that the industries have taken an enormous
toll that can be measured in terms of land that has simply washed away,
multiple sources familiar with the cases told The New Orleans Advocate.
The cases would be separate and more narrowly focused than the
Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East suit that set off a
storm of criticism from Jindal and his aides when it was filed this
summer, and there are early indications that the parishes’ suits would
not face the same backlash from the Jindal administration, which sought
to play up the differences between the cases on Friday.
Even so, the parish cases could complicate efforts to short-circuit
the flood authority lawsuit, and they represent growing pressure to
hold one of the state’s most powerful industries to account.