Louisiana’s Sinking Parishes Sue Fossil Fuel Companies Over Climate Damage

After an anxious weekend, Louisiana residents let out a collective sigh of relief when Hurricane Nate took a turn to the east, sparing them from a direct hit. But they also know that relief is temporary. Especially in Louisiana’s coastal communities, vulnerability to the impacts of climate change is a fact of life and increasingly, communities are looking for how to pay for them.

 

“The reality is we don’t feel in the industry responsible at all in any way for the coastal erosion,” said Don Briggs, president of the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association.

“There has been interpretation of whether it [wetlands] should be put back to original condition, you know, which is kind of hard to do,” said Briggs, who said that was never the intention of the law.

“The climate has been changing for thousands and thousands of years. Do I believe that fossil fuels is causing all this? I don’t,” said Briggs, who acknowledges the coast is sinking, but said he blames sea level rise, without acknowledging that sea level rise is driven by global warming. He also blames a fault line that runs through southern Louisiana for causing land loss and subsidence…

 

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