Taglegacy lawsuits

Louisiana awaits 2015 to undo the damage caused by Big Oil

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Sometimes it’s a struggle to find the kernel of good news amid the morass that is our corrupted political system, especially in my home state of Louisiana. Earlier this year, I told you about the big reactionary push in Baton Rouge, by the oil giants against the state’s up-and-coming environmental movement. The Republican pro-business majority, with control of the legislature and with...

Saving the wetlands: The empire strikes back

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In the last week, there’s been a lot of discussion about the 4th anniversary of the BP oil spill — and how Louisiana’s critical wetlands had been pummeled and degraded by an onslaught of crude. These marshes aren’t only places of great natural beauty and biological diversity, but they’re also a critical buffer — the buffer, actually — between a major...

Why Big Oil’s assault on Baton Rouge must be stopped

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 The other day I told you that Big Oil — alarmed in Louisiana about the citizenry finally fighting back after decades of environmental abuse, and uncertain about their political prospects past 2015 — is launching an epic legislative assault in Baton Rouge. Their army of lobbyists is seeking no less than a rollback of anti-pollution standards in the state, back to a time before the...

Stop the polluters from taking back Louisiana

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The next two years will be more critical for Louisiana and its beautiful yet fragile environment than any time in the state’s history. On one hand, the surge in oil and gas production across the United States is placing new pressures on my home state in the terms of more rigs in the Gulf of Mexico, more pipelines crisscrossing the state, more barges coming down our waterways and more tanker...

Respected general declares war — on the abuses of Big Oil

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There’s been more environmental news than usual in recent weeks, and so it’s been a while since I’ve given readers an update on the giant sinkhole in Bayou Corne, the slow-motion ecological crisis that’s been assaulting the Louisiana bayou for more than 14 months now. That doesn’t mean that the situation is better. To the contrary, some experts say the sinkhole may...

Magazine exposes how Big Oil lobbyists run Louisiana

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The new November issue of Harper’s magazine — available on newsstands now — features a must-read article on the issues that launched this blog in the first place: Big Oil’s domination of Louisiana politics and its fight to protect polluters over landowners whose property has been dumped on. The piece entitled “Dirty South: The foul legacy of Louisiana oil,” by...

New Orleans memo: You can still have great music without noise pollution

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Sometimes a name can tell you a lot. In the past, I’ve told you about my enthusiastic support for a New Orleans group, active on Facebook and the Internet, that’s called “Hear the Music, Stop the Noise.” The title makes a powerful point: That it’s possible for a great American city like my hometown to continue having a spectacular and vibrant music scene without...

The sinkhole keeps getting bigger, and so do the lies of Texas Brine Co.

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The crisis involving the Bayou Corne sinkhole in Louisiana just doesn’t stop. In what’s becoming an almost daily headline, the sinkhole grew again, swallowing up more trees and even part of an access road: A 1,500 square-foot section caved in from the edge of a sinkhole in Assumption Parish Tuesday night and pulled down several trees and part of an access road, parish officials said...

Torn on the bayou: Sinkhole keeps getting bigger, more dangerous

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A lot has happened over the last few weeks. In the political world, the presidential race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney sees a new kerfuffle every few hours. Down here in Louisiana, we’ve been whacked by Hurricane Isaac, and on the environmental front we’re still trying to get BP to pay its fair share for all the havoc it’s wreaked in the Gulf. But there’s one thing...

A temporary reprieve from Shell’s risky and reckless Arctic drilling scheme

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For the last couple of weeks, we’ve been consumed with the never-ending fallout from BP’s Deepwater Horizon disaster. Some 29 months after the explosion that killed 11 people and spewed 5 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, we’ve seen a hurricane toss BP’s oil onto our once pristine beaches all over again. And we’ve also been fighting it out in the legal...

Stuart H. Smith is an attorney based in New Orleans fighting major oil companies and other polluters.
Cooper Law Firm

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