Taglevee board

Experts: Louisiana’s wetlands crisis is getting much worse

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Some days it seems like our politicians are living in a dream world. A couple of days ago, I told you about Louisiana’s Gov. Bobby Jindal and his craven approval of badly written legislation that will a) do the bidding of his Big Oil and Gas campaign donors and kill a lawsuit that would require 97 large companies to spend billions to restore the coastal wetlands they destroyed and b) was...

Bobby Jindal’s folly

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This weekend, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal had a clear choice. He could follow the advice of the state’s attorney general — his fellow Republican Buddy Caldwell — and many other legal scholars. That would mean vetoing a poorly drafted, ill-thought-out measure that came about from Big Oil’s desperation to block legal action that would force it to pay millions to restore the...

Something’s happening in South Louisiana, and the “Dirty Dozen” doesn’t get it

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Every day, there’s more evidence that the healthy winds of change are blowing through Louisiana. That’s especially true in the southern part of the state which has been battered by events that have been both epic in scale — the BP oil spill and 2005’s Hurricane Katrina — and more prosaic, like the Bayou Corne sinkhole and the day-in, day-out toxins pumped into the...

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...

Louisiana’s oil and gas industry is in full panic mode

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For years, the powerful oil and gas industry in Louisiana has dominated life in this state — its economy and especially its politics. But after a remarkable turn of events over the last year, Big Oil and Gas here in my home state has become more like a cornered, wounded beast of prey — and so now the industry is thrashing out wildly, clawing in every direction. And it’s kind of...

The hypocrisy of Big Oil is collapsing, from Baton Rouge to Dallas

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There’s been some stunning developments this week in the fight against Big Oil — one of them right here in Louisiana. It was just last year that an epic expose in Harper’s magazine pulled the lid off some of the undue, outsized influence that the oil industry holds here in our Sportsmen’s Paradise, and a key element was the clout that the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association...

WATCH: Gen. Honore takes his ‘Green Army’ to TV

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Recently I’ve told you about one of the more exciting pieces of environmental news we’ve had in Louisiana in some time: The new political crusade led by Gen. Russel Honore, the straight-talking Creole who won deserved high marks for the Katrina recovery in 2005. The now-retired general is working with long-time Louisiana environmentalists and with author John Barry, the former levee...

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...

Jindal: “Tough” on BP, a lapdog for Big Oil

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This is how you know BP has really crossed the line: When the company that gave us the Deepwater Horizon disaster and the 5-million-barrel oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has gone so far over the top with its efforts to challenge legitimate damage claims and to cheat on its promises to the Gulf that it’s even angered Louisiana’s rabidly pro-business governor, Bobby Jindal. Jindal has...

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