Saturday, August 10, 2013

Video: Hunt for BP disaster oil continues on La. coast ~Amy Wold, The Advocate
What the levee authority really wants for Louisiana's coast: John M. Barry
~The Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority East -- the levee board responsible for protecting metropolitan New Orleans east of the Mississippi River -- filed suit July 24 against Exxon Mobil, BP, Shell and 94 other oil, gas and pipeline companies for destroying the land and marsh buffer that once provided natural protection to New Orleans from hurricanes.
As most readers know, approximately 1,900 square miles of Louisiana's coastal lands have disappeared in the past 80 years. This land loss is continuing and, coupled with sea level rise, if nothing is done most of Louisiana's coast will simply disappear. This would be disastrous for the country and the state -- and particularly the defendants in the suit. Chris John, head of Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association, wrote in The Times-Picayune and last week that coastal lands "protect critical oil and gas infrastructure from storm surge," adding that "our viability depends on" the coastal buffer.

~Several factors have contributed to land loss, and the oil and gas industry is by no means responsible for all of it. But even the industry recognizes it is responsible for much of it. The industry has dredged 10,000 miles of canals and pipelines through the marsh, allowing saltwater intrusion, killing plants. Without their root structure holding the land together, it melted into the ocean. In addition, the extraction of an immense volume of oil and gas from beneath the surface has caused the surface of the land to sink. Scientific studies, which included industry representatives, concluded that the industry caused an estimated 36 percent of the land loss statewide. And Chris John conceded, "Industry recognizes its role" in the loss.
By destroying the land buffer that once protected populated areas, the industry has made the levee board's task far more difficult and far more expensive. Don't take our word for it. In 2006, when the state of Louisiana sued the federal government for revenue from off-shore production, Bob Bea, one of the most respected flood experts in the world and formerly Shell's chief off-shore engineer, stated that the industry "contributed significantly to the loss of natural defenses such as barrier beaches, wetlands, and marshes. In several important cases, it was the loss of these natural defenses that contributed to the unanticipated breaches of flood protection facilities that protected the greater New Orleans area during Hurricane Katrina and led to the repeated flooding during Hurricane Rita."
Saints Defense “A lot to work on” ~Nola Nation Rising

~Hat Tweet fo'da killa photo of Our Beloved New Orleans Saints

Entergy New Orleans Customers to see $6 Million Credit?

Tulane Avenue corridor will see $10 million streetscape revitalization ~Marta Jewson, Mid-City Messenger

Hunting could return to parts of New Orleans

Where Y'Eat: Bakeries On The Rise In New Orleans ~Ian McNulty, WWNO

Friday, August 9, 2013

Levee board association comes out against oil and gas lawsuit ~Jeff Adelson, New Orleans Advocate~The Association of Levee Boards of Louisiana’s executive committee voted “overwhelmingly” to oppose the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority - East’s suit during a private meeting Friday morning, said Bob Lacour, an attorney for the authority. The suit, which has been opposed by Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration, accuses the energy companies of increasing the risk of catastrophic flooding in the New Orleans area by destroying wetlands that would have served as a buffer to storm surge.

St. Tammany Democrats group backs coastal erosion lawsuit ~Bob Warren
~ The Progressive Northshore Democrats organization of St. Tammany  Parish Wednesday became the first political organization in southeast Louisiana to endorse a controversial lawsuit recently filed against 97 oil and natural gas companies by the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority -- East seeking monetary relief for documented damage to the state's wetlands by years of drilling and energy industry canal dredging.
   The landmark lawsuit was filed by the Authority recently in New Orleans Civil District Court. The Authority was approved as a constitutional amendment by voters following Hurricane Katrina and consists of nine members who are authorities in flood damage and water control and who serve without compensation.
   In the resolution, adopted without opposition by the political group, it is noted that decades of unchecked oil and gas exploration company canal dredging has accounted for from 30 to 50 percent of the loss of some 2000 square miles of Louisiana wetlands. The resolution notes that in a much cited study for the Gas Research Institute in 1996, the late University of New Orleans geologist Shea Penland found that such drilling and dredging accounted for 36 percent of Louisiana wetlands loss from 1932 to 1990.
  Progressive Northshore Democrats, led by Joan Simon of the Covington area, is an organization of Democrats and politically progressive independents who meet on a regular basis but it is not a registered non-profit nor a registered Political Action Committee. The organization has adopted past resolutions dealing with environmental issues pertaining to Lake Pontchartrain and surrounding areas. Member Richard Boyd authored the lawsuit resolution.
 The resolution says that a "healthy and vibrant wetlands ecosystem is vital to controlling storm surge and destructive salt water intrusion...and a compromised wetlands interlaced with thousands of abandoned and neglected oil and gas industry drilling access and pipeline access canals negate the protective armor of a vibrant wetlands system." The resolution notes studies showing some 10,000 such canals have been dredged throughout the southeast Louisiana wetlands.
  The resolution notes that continuing wetlands loss, a major portion attributed to the network of oil and gas dredged canals, increases the need for more expensive protection levees and floodgates to shield citizens and property from encroaching storm surge and salt water invasion.
  The resolution calls upon Gov. Bobby Jindal, the state legislature, the state congressional delegation and municipal leaders of shoreline communities on the south and north shores of Lake Pontchartrain and east of the Mississippi River to join in endosring the filing of the historic lawsuit.
  A copy of the resolution and accompanying map prepared for the political organization by the company was forwarded Wednesday to the Authority's offices in New Orleans.

Will river water save Louisiana's coast or kill the marsh? ~John Snell, WVUE

Panel delays incentives for planned gas-to-liquids plant in La.
Brees can join elite fraternity this season ~Scott Walker, WDSU
FEMA adminstrator gets look at local levees ~Jeff Adelson, New Orleans Advocate

Thin Skin: Jindal aide to bloggers and tweeters — shut your traps! ~Robert Man, Something Like The Truth

Read more here:

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Remembering the unforgettable: a salute to the late, very great Greg Peters ~Mark Moseley
Beard Science -or- Fuzzy Logic ~moosedenied 
~"My creation… is it real?" ~Rob Ryan.  
And so it begins. So, what would you little maniacs like to do first? Friday night should give us our first somewhat "real" hint as to whether or not the hard-sell they've been putting on us the last couple weeks re: this new-and-theoretically-improved defense has any basis in reality whatsoever, as our old pals Chunky Chase and Terrance Copper return to the Benz™ for some good old fashioned pushing and shoving against Our Heroes (and Patrick Robinson.) Fingers crossed.

NOAA believes hurricane season will be busy ~Amy Wold, The Advocate

Which Hurricane Forecast Model Should You Trust? ~Dr. Jeff Masters, Wunderblog

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Train derailment, dozens evacuated near Opelousas
~“The last time I was in a place this dangerous it was Desert Storm,” joked Russel Honoré, the Army general ordered to deal with the chaos after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in August 2005.
Now a civilian trying to raise the profile of the Bayou Corne sinkhole disaster, Honoré then apologized to the crowd, “on behalf of the people of Louisiana, because democracy has failed you. The resources the extraction companies are taking from this green Earth so close to where we sit today are critical to America, but there has to be a balance between extraction from our Earth and caring for the Earth. The people will not sit by while the environment is ruined by extraction companies," Honoré said to loud applause. “Ladies and gentlemen, we need the courage of Christ and the voice of Huey Long. Let’s give notice that if you break it you fix it. Let’s give notice — you will fix this or you will go to jail. I’m a believer and, if you don’t fix it you will burn in hell.”
Stephanie Grace: Levee lawsuit already mired in politics ~New Orleans Advocate

Pride flag stolen, homophobic slur painted on home ~WDSU

Marigny shooting case hinges on self-defense law ~John Simerman