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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 12, 2015

February 12, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Louisiana coast authority recommends spending $32 million of oil spill fine money on Houma lock, Calcasieu River salinity control projects
By Mark Schleifstein, Times-Picayune. Feb. 11, 2015
“The project is aimed at restoring historic salinity levels in the basin and will be designed to save more than 3,400 acres of marsh from degradation over 50 years.” (Read More)
Jefferson Parish Council calls for study of Plaquemines coal terminal
By Adriane Quinlan, Times-Picayune. Feb. 11, 2015
“Environment advocates say it would harm a continuing coastal restoration project, the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion, as well as residents who live near rail lines in West Jefferson.” (Read More)
Ed Schultz Exposes BP’s Toxic Impact on Gulf Coast Residents
By Farron Cousins, Ring of Fire. Feb. 11, 2015
“Residents along the Gulf Coast are approaching an unpleasant anniversary – The 5-year anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oilrig disaster and spill. Soon after that April anniversary, we’ll hit another 5-year reminder of the day that almost all of mainstream media hosts stopped paying attention to the destruction that BP caused to the Gulf Coast.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 11, 2015

February 11, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Growing Deltas in Atchafalaya Bay
By Adam Voiland, Earth Observatory. Feb. 09, 2015
“If we start diverting significant portions of the water and sediment from the main channel of the Mississippi River into adjacent wetlands, lakes, and bays—as happens now in Atchafalaya Bay—we’ll be taking an important first step toward saving a significant part of Louisiana’s coastal plain.” (Read More)

Crude Awakening: HBO report on the lasting effects of the BP oil spill (Video)
Vice Media on HBO
(Watch video)

Coastal authority could make decision on sediment diversion construction by year’s end
By Mark Schleifstein, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 09, 2015
“Louisiana's Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority could take a vote by the end of 2015 on whether to move forward with plans to build and operate a major diversion of Mississippi River sediment and water to rebuild wetlands on both sides of the river, authority Executive Director Kyle Graham said Monday.” (Read More)
Coastal protection chairman expresses support for Morganza project
By Aaren Gordon, Houma Today. Feb. 10, 2015
“The newly appointed state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority chairman Tuesday reassured the South Central Industrial Association about state support for the Morganza-to-the-Gulf levee project despite the agency’s change in leadership.” (Read More)
Mud Fight: Study aims to answer questions about impact of river diversions
By John Snell, WVUE-Fox 8. Feb. 09, 2015
“There are going to be impacts," said Jerome Zeringue, who left his job last week as chairman of the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority. "We don't deny the fact that there are shifts, but there are shifts that occur without doing anything.” (Read More)


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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 09, 2015

February 9, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Does BP deserve mercy in setting Deepwater Horizon penalty?
By Tom Zeller Jr., Forbes. Feb. 08, 2015
“While it will likely be decades before we fully comprehend the extent of damage to wildlife, we do know that nearly five years after the explosion, dolphins are dying in high numbers, sea turtles are failing to nest, and oyster production remains low,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation, as testimony in the penalty phase of the trial got underway last month. “It is our obligation as a nation to hold BP accountable.” (Read More)
Florida Everglades would be a winner, Louisiana coast a loser under proposed Obama budget
By John Snell, WVUE-Fox8. Feb. 09, 2015
“The state's estimated $170 million annual take represents one-third to one-half of the anticipated funding for the state's Coastal Master Plan, Zeringue said, and the largest continuing source of revenue.” (Read More)

Missing oil from Deepwater Horizon found on sea floor
By Tessa Stuart, Audubon Magazine. Feb. 09, 2015
“A recent survey shows that 70 percent of Americans think BP should pay the maximum fine allowed under the Act.  But ultimately a judge will decide after hearing arguments in the third and final portion of BP’s trial, which got underway last month.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 06, 2015

February 6, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Delta Blues Part 3: Better Together
By Eve Troeh & Jesse Hardman, WWNO. Feb. 05, 2015
“Louisiana faces the highest relative rates of sea level rise in the world. As policy and funding debates rage over how to best restore and protect our coastal communities, local leaders also look for allies elsewhere.” (Read More)

Cedric Richmond urges President Obama to scrap plan to cancel offshore revenue sharing
By Bruce Alpert, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 05, 2015
“Canals cut through Louisiana wetlands for oil and gas exploration are one of the causes of erosion that destroyed 1,900 square miles of land since 1932. The erosion has continued and the damage was exacerbated by the massive BP oil spill in 2010.” (Read More)
Scientists may have finally solved the mystery of the missing BP oil
By Terrence McCoy, The Washington Post. Feb. 05, 2015
“According to papers published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and Environmental Science & Technology, while everyone was frenetically searching the waters for oil, millions of gallons of it quietly sank to the ocean floor.” (Read More)

Vitter announces $62.4 million for Louisiana projects Feb. 03, 2015
“Louisiana’s ports and waterways are at the center of transporting goods and services to the rest of the county. Maintaining and updating our ship channels, levees, and canals is critical for two reasons. First, it helps restore out coastline and protects Louisianians from storms and flooding, and secondly, it allows commerce to flow freely,” said Vitter. “These projects will create jobs, boost the local economy, and help to prevent future natural and ecological disaster to south Louisiana.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 05, 2015

February 5, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Greens fume over Obama’s bid to divert restoration funding
 By Phil Taylor, Greenwire. Feb. 04, 2015
“This proposed budget undercuts the administration's previous commitments to restore critical economic infrastructure and ecosystems in the Mississippi River Delta, where we are losing 16 square miles of critical wetlands every year — a preventable coastal erosion crisis," the environmental groups said. "Those wetlands, and the culture and economic infrastructure they protect from hurricanes, will be lost without complete and ongoing intervention.” (Read More)

Budget plan threatens to gut Louisiana’s coastal restoration effort
 By John Snell, WVUE-New Orleans. Feb. 03, 2015
“The budget, unveiled this week, would scrap plans for Gulf Coast states from Florida to Texas to share $500 million in offshore oil royalties annually. The total includes an estimated $170 million for Louisiana.” (Read More)

Don’t cut off offshore revenue-sharing, President Obama: Editorial
By Editorial Board, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 04, 2015
“Louisiana and other Gulf states have borne the environmental and infrastructure costs of energy production for decades. We are only now about to get a meaningful share of the lease revenues that oil and gas companies pay to the federal government.” (Read More)

State’s coastal restoration efforts imperiled by Obama’s budget proposal
By Bob Marshall, The Lens. Feb. 03, 2015
“President Obama’s unexpected budget proposal to stop sending a portion of federal offshore mineral royalties to Gulf states could cripple Louisiana’s coastal-restoration efforts by eliminating what is expected to be $140 million to nearly $180 million in annual revenue.” (Read More)

This overlooked item in Obama’s budget will cost Gulf Coast states millions
By Jeff Guo, Washington Post. Feb. 04, 2015
“Louisiana, perhaps, has the keenest interest in all of this. In 2012, the state issued an ambitious 50-year, $50 billion plan to shore up its sinking coastline. The GOMESA money will be crucial to this effort, which will involve $500–$1.5 billion in annual spending.” (Read More)

Louisiana members confident of blocking President Obama’s proposal to scrap offshore revenue sharing
By Bruce Alpert, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 03, 2015
“Louisiana congressional members are optimistic they can block President Barack Obama's proposal to reallocate revenue sharing funding for Louisiana and other oil producing Gulf States for national environmental needs.” (Read More)

President Obama sticks it to Louisiana; who has the standing to fight for us?
By Jarvis DeBerry, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 04, 2015
“We deserve the royalty money because our state has paid the ultimate cost for that oil and gas exploration: the loss of our land.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 03, 2015

February 3, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Proposed 2015-16 coastal restoration and protection plan swells to $773 million
By Mark Schleifstein, The Times Picayune. Feb. 02, 2015
“The 223-page "annual plan" by the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, which must be approved by the Louisiana Legislature, serves as a blueprint for the state's $50 billion, 50-year coastal protection and restoration Master Plan.” (Read More)

BP oil spill trial wraps up nearly 2 years after historic litigation began
By Jennifer Larino, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 02, 2015
“The final phase of the main BP oil spill litigation ended Monday, nearly two years since dozens of attorneys for the federal government and BP converged on a New Orleans courtroom to begin what has become one of the most complex civil cases in the nation's history.” (Read More)

Obama budget would reallocate offshore royalty payments for Louisiana and other Gulf state to ‘entire nation’
By Bruce Alpert, The Times Picayune. Feb. 02, 2015
“The president's budget plan to funnel the Gulf states' offshore energy revenue out of those states is incredibly insulting to Louisianians," Vitter said. "In Louisiana, federal revenue from offshore energy activity goes directly to coastal restoration. Our coasts are the first line of defense to hurricane or tropical storm; plus, they represent a critical part of our ecosystem.” (Read More)

Anadarko official says company didn’t pay for oil spill cleanup
By Margaret Cronin Fisk, Bloomberg. Feb. 02, 2015
“Under the Oil Pollution Act, a responsible party, which you were named as, has a duty, an obligation to pay response costs and cleanup costs,” U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier said during testimony in New Orleans Monday by Darrell Hollek, an Anadarko executive.” (Read More)

BP partner Anadarko responsible for oil spill fines, federal judge says
By Jennifer Larino, The Times Picayune. Feb. 02, 2015
“You seem to be making more of a policy argument as to why a non-operator should be subject to penalties under the Clean Water Act," Barbier said. "If that's the case, I think you're in the wrong venue. You need to go to Congress.” (Read More)

Reports establish tens of millions of gallons of BP oil still in the Gulf
By Charles Digges, Feb. 02, 2015
“Millions of gallons of oil from BP’s 2010 Deepwater Horizon blowout have been discovered in the sediments on the Gulf of Mexico’s floor says a new report, giving lie to the petroleum giant’s continue claims that it eradicated the worst consequences of the biggest maritime oil spill in US history.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Feb. 02, 2015

February 2, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

Millions of gallons of oil settled at the bottom of the gulf after BP oil spill
By Katie Valentine, ThinkProgress. Jan. 30, 2015
“Millions of gallons of oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill didn’t get cleaned up, and instead settled in the sediment of the Gulf of Mexico’s floor, a new study has found.” (Read More)

America’s WETLAND Foundation calls coastal restoration budget cuts ‘No Go’ zone
By Mark Schleifstein, The Times-Picayune. Jan. 30, 2015
“In such dire budget situations, across the board cuts may be politically plausible, but the case we make for saving our coast has been one of utmost urgency. We cannot afford to send a contradictory signal to those who are deciding on billions of dollars in restoration funding and continuing attention to our most critical needs.” (Read More)

BP oil spill trial shifts focus to Anadarko, witnesses to testify against pollution fines
By Jennifer Larino, The Times-Picayune. Feb. 02, 2015
“Anadarko Petroleum Corp. will call three witnesses Monday (Feb. 2) in the BP oil spill trial, to bolster its case that it should not face pollution fines for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico spill, even though it was a co-owner in the failed Macondo well.” (Read More)

New head of state’s coastal protection, restoration not well-known, but has experience in coastal issues
By Amy Wold, The Advocate. Feb. 02, 2015
“Chip Kline has been named chairman of the state’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority Board as well as director of the Governor’s Office of Coastal Activities, replacing Jerome Zeringue, who has served in those positions for about a year.” (Read More)

BP oil spill at issue in two federal court cases next week
By Kevin McGill, Associated Press. Feb. 02, 2015
“Legal battles arising from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill play out in two federal courtrooms in New Orleans next week.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Jan. 30, 2015

January 30, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

BP oil spill: Study traces almost 10 million gallons to Gulf sea floor
By Jayalakshmi K, International Business Times. Jan. 30, 2015
“A study led by Florida State University Professor of Oceanography Jeff Chanton has found around 6 million to 10 million gallons buried in the sediment on the Gulf floor, about 62 miles southeast of the Mississippi Delta.” (Read More)

With recent ruling, federal judge cuts at least $240 million from state’s BP fine
By Bob Marshall, The Lens. Jan. 26, 2015
“You don’t get credit for what you have to do – which is cleaning up the pollution you dumped on the Gulf,” said David Muth, National Wildlife Federation director of the Mississippi River Delta Restoration coalition. “It doesn’t matter whether it cost them $200 or $200 billion, it’s what they have to do. For them to claim some kind of moral credit for cleaning up even a spec of what they dumped is absurd.” (Read More)

BP Begs for Lower Fine for Deepwater Horizon
By Tessa Stuart, Audubon Magazine. Jan. 22, 2015
“The outcome from this decision must send a clear and powerful signal to every other operator in the Gulf: deep-sea drilling is risky business, and they must protect their employees, our communities and our ecosystems," the groups wrote in a joint statement released last week. "BP chose not to do that, so they deserve to pay the maximum fines allowed by law.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Jan. 29, 2015

January 29, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

5 Years after the Spill: What BP Owes the Gulf Coast
By David Yarnold, Roll Call. Jan. 29, 2015
“It’s been nearly five years since BP slimed the Gulf Coast, taking the lives of 11 men, wrecking livelihoods and killing tens of thousands of helpless coastal birds. Finally, federal Judge Carl Barbier is heading into the final stretch, deciding how much the third largest oil company in the world will have to pay in pollution fines for the worst oil spill in U.S. history.” (Read More)

BP’s ‘civically responsible’ spending after oil spill propped up Gulf economy, expert testifies
By Jennifer Larino, The Times-Picayune. Jan. 29, 2015
“Baton Rouge economist Loren Scott predicted "the bottom would fall out" for the region's economy when oil started washing ashore in the early days of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Scott testified on Wednesday those forecasts were some of the "worst I've ever given," failing to anticipate the "robust recovery" driven by billions of dollars BP pumped into the Gulf Coast for cleanup and damage claims.” (Read More)

BP to sell part of its Gulf of Mexico stake to Chevron
AP, New Jersey Herald. Jan. 29, 2015
“For BP, it allows the company to move some of its recent discoveries closer to production as it continues to work to settle claims resulting from its 2010 oil spill in the Gulf.” (Read More)

$7 billion just disappeared on the Gulf Coast
*photo, MRD protest, 2013
By Josiah Neeley, R Street. Jan. 28, 2015
“The case is particularly noteworthy because, under the terms of the 2012 RESTORE Act, proceeds of the civil penalties assessed in the trial are to be divided up between the five Gulf Coast states.” (Read More)

Small-scale projects benefit the coast
By Jonathan Olivier, Daily Comet. Jan. 27, 2015
“Many of the projects, some paid for through state or federal dollars, are constructed through nonprofits and private organizations, with hopes of stopping and curbing coastal erosion on private land.” (Read More)

Executive: No guarantee BP would help pay subsidiary’s fines
By Kevin McGill, AP. Jan. 28, 2015
“An executive for the BP subsidiary that faces billions of dollars in possible fines for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill testified Tuesday that it is uncertain whether other BP entities would step in to help pay a steep penalty.” (Read More)

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Latest Mississippi River Delta News: Jan. 28, 2015

January 28, 2015 | Posted by lbourg in Latest News

State’s coastal agency asked to come up with potential budget cuts
By Amy Wold, The Advocate. Jan. 28, 2015
“Up to this point, they have been spared,” said David Muth, director for Mississippi River Delta Restoration for the National Wildlife Federation. This is an organization tasked with protecting coastal Louisiana, Muth said. Asking it to make budget cuts, “It’s just not a good sign.” (Read More)

In BP oil spill trial, company’s expert witnesses to testify to recovering wildlife, strong Gulf economy
By Jennifer Larino, The Times-Picayune. Jan. 28, 2015
“The testimony is intended to support BP's case that the spill's environmental and economic impact was not as widespread as originally feared.” (Read More)

Gulf Coast beaches, marshes show ‘substantial recovery’ after 2010 oil spill, BP witness testifies
By Jennifer Larino, The Times-Picayune. Jan. 28, 2015
“On cross examination, Justice Department attorney Abby Andre suggested Taylor was downplaying the spill's shoreline impact, noting oil was still being reported on hundreds of miles of coast as recently as May 2013.” (Read More)

BP executive: ‘Nothing we can do or say’ can change oil spill tragedy
By Jennifer Larino, The Times-Picayune. Jan. 27, 2015
“A BP executive testified Tuesday that the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill was a tragedy, but he is proud of the company and the efforts of its employees in gathering resources and experts to contain the disaster.” (Read More)

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