The Southeast Louisiana Flood Protect Authority-East filed a massive lawsuit almost 100 oil and gas companies last month. The suit alleges that coastal erosion of the wetlands is due to dredging and the digging of pipelines and canals by the oil and gas companies. The loss of the wetlands has now left the inlands more susceptible to hurricane storm surges. The lawsuit seeks damages from those oil, pipeline and gas companies for the damages caused to the wetlands over the course of many years.
The SLFPA-E board met to decide whether to continue its lawsuit on Thursday, Aug. 15. There were 70 to 80 people in attendance, many of whom stood to applaud the SLFPA-E’s decision to sue some of the biggest corporations in the oil and gas industry.
The lawsuit has come under harsh criticism from Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and his coastal advisor, Garrett Graves, as well as other state lawmakers. The oil and gas industry has also been very outspoken in their criticism.
The board, according to media reports, voted to proceed with the lawsuit; however, it also voted to meet with state officials to determine if an agreement could be reached on how the oil and gas companies could be held “significantly responsible” for the damage and injury to the wetlands.
The second vote approved a 45-day period in which the lawsuit would not move forward if such an agreement could be reached. It also didn’t specify what the terms of the agreement needed to be, nor how the lawsuit would be held up if an agreement was reached.
wwltv.com, “Supporters applaud flood control board over decision to sue oil companies” No author given, Aug. 15, 2013