Gulf Coast

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Author and activist John Barry is our first guest today, and he joins us to discuss his continued fight to protect Louisiana's coastal wetlands and hold those accountable whom he feels are aiding in its depletion. As a former member of the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority - East, John is spearheading the lawsuit against the Oil & Gas Industry for not upholding the law and for violating the permits granted to them. According to the permits, the Oil & Gas Industry was required to pay for any damages that they may have caused, and according to studies they are responsible for 36% of coastal damage done to Louisiana's coastline which they have yet to pay for. John and the lawsuit were mentioned in a recent New York Times Magazine article http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/10/02/magazine/mag-oil-lawsuit.html.

  

Also, longtime U.S. Representative from Georgia and veteran Civil Rights activist John Lewis joins us along with his co-author Andrew Aydin to discuss and promote their graphic novel  March: Book One. The graphic novel tells the first-hand account of John's lifelong struggle for civil and human rights, and includes detailed drawings by illustrator Nate Powell. Rep. Lewis and co-author Andrew Aydin will be on campus at LSU October 21st for a book signing and presentation entitled "March with Congressman John Lewis" at the LSU Student Union.


New Orleans native and local fine arts photographer Michel Varisco developed a curiosity about the Gulf Coast region at a young age. With a mother who is a former biochemist, and engineer dad, she started learning on family road trips. Her dad would explain the Bonnet Carré Spillway, or point out dead trees while driving down LA1 to Grande Isle. 

Ann Marie Awad

Senator Mary Landrieu says a lawsuit against oil and gas companies is not the answer to renewing Louisiana’s gulf coast.

The clang of tide gauges throughout parts of southeast Louisiana aren’t from a science fiction movie, though they may make residents feel like they’re caught in one.

These days when fishing guide Ryan Lambert motors away from the boat launch in Buras, he’s fishing in the what locals call “the land of used-to-bes.”

As in, that used to be Yellow Cotton Bay, or Drake Bay, or English Bay… and dozens more. It’s all one big open body of water now because the marshes, cypress swamps and ridges that separated these water bodies for most of his life are gone.

Water Institute Hires Esteemed Researcher

Nov 28, 2012

The Water Institute of the Gulf has hired a renowned Mississippi River expert to join their staff to help advance the group’s Gulf Coast restoration and protection efforts.

This week the state legislature unanimously approved the 2012 Louisiana Coastal Master Plan, a 50 year blueprint for restoring disappearing wetlands and protecting the state's natural resources.

Coastal land loss is an ongoing problem in gulf states and there are many agencies, non-profits and universities working to solve it. An independent research institute hopes to be the linchpin that brings them all together. The Water Institute of the Gulf was founded last year and has just selected UL-Lafayette civil engineering professor Ehab Meselhe as the new director of natural systems. He's also heading up a five-year, $25 million federally funded project studying land loss and restoration.

WRKF's Tegan Wendland talked with him about how he hopes the Water Institute will streamline efforts to save the gulf.


Sick Fish Suggest Lingering Impact of BP Spill

Apr 27, 2012

In November 2011, roughly a year and a half after the Deepwater Horizon disaster, commercial fisherman began catching red snapper with dark sores and lesions in the Gulf.

A group of LSU scientists studying the impact of the disaster is still finding large numbers of sick fish -- snapper in particular -- throughout the area of the oil spill.