TagLouisiana DNR

How Louisiana missed a large oil spill


One issue that’s come up repeatedly since I launched this website seven years ago has been the multiple failings of Louisiana’s state environmental regulators, especially when it comes to reining in the state’s powerful oil and natural gas interests. For decades, under both Republican and Democratic governors, the regulatory agencies in Baton Rouge haven’t been up to snuff...

Progress for the people of Louisiana


One of the major themes I’ve been writing about frequently in the last year is the rising environmental movement in Louisiana. To be clear, my home state already boasted some fierce fighters for environmental justice, like Marylee Orr and her Louisiana Environmental Action Network, or the Louisiana Bucket Brigade, doing battle with dirty chemical plants. But the shock of recent events such...

Honore: Oil and chemical companies “hijacking our democracy”


Talk about a contrast: This weekend, I told you about a speech in New Orleans before America’s top environment journalists that was delivered by Geoff Morrell, the former Pentagon flack turned public relations “expert” for BP in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon fiasco. I mentioned that Morrell stunned the reporters in the audience by blaming the aura of bad publicity...

Stop the polluters from taking back Louisiana


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...

The slow drip-drip-drip of oil assaulting the Gulf


The Gulf of Mexico is under attack from oil spills. And the millions of gallons of leftover crude from 2010’s Deepwater Horizon disaster is just a part of it. With hundreds of oil-and-gas related operations, from offshore rigs to refineries, cluttering the Gulf’s waters and lining its shores, the steady drumbeat of medium, small and even seemingly very small leaks and other mishaps...

The Louisiana sinkhole: It gets even worse


The saga of the Louisiana sinkhole just keeps getting worse and worse. Officials with the company that mined the brine under the town of Bayou Corne in Assumption Parish — the Texas Brine Co. — and the Louisiana state regulatory agencies said they were simply shocked, shocked in the summer of 2012 when the earth began to rumble under the bayou community and when dozens of residents...

More much-needed global attention for Bayou Corne


It’s funny — it was just about this time last year that I was writing multiple blog posts about the remarkable situation in Bayou Corne, the little town tucked inside the swamplands 70 miles west of New Orleans, and wondering why no one else was paying attention. After all, it’s not every day that a small town shakes and rumbles, dangerous methane gas bubbles up from under...

BP oil still assaulting Gulf beaches, getting more toxic


More than three years after the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico, BP’s spilled oil is continuing to assault Louisiana’s beaches — and now we have lab tests showing that these giant tar mats are more toxic than ever. There’ve been some reports out of the region regarding three separate episodes in which these tar mats have come on shore on Isle Grand...

Crisis continues in Bayou Corne as sinkhole grows to 4 acres


I wanted to update readers on the latest from the sinkhole in Bayou Corne, about 70 miles west of New Orleans. The bad news is that this update is going to sound a lot like my other recent posts on the subject. The sinkhole, over a failing salt cavern, continues to alarmingly grow in size, swallowing up land and trees. The rural area is still plagued by foul odors and bubbling gases coming from...

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