Latest news: December 29, 2011

12.29.2011 | In Latest News, Uncategorized

A Year of Coastal Questions

By Gambit (New Orleans, La.). Dec. 27, 2011.

“The future of the Gulf Coast following the BP oil disaster is in the hands of congress, but will there be any help in 2012? This year, both chambers of Congress successfully drafted near-identical bills that dictate where fines against BP will go. They argue the bulk of the fines, which BP will pay for numerous Clean Water Act violations, should go to the Gulf states…”

Plan for a cleaner Gulf of Mexico, healthier region

By Editorial Page staff, St. Petersburg Times. Dec. 25, 2011.

“The Obama administration did the nation — and Florida in particular — a great service by putting forth an ambitious plan to restore the Gulf of Mexico. The blueprint unveiled this month could, over time, begin to reverse decades of man-made damage that hammered the gulf long before last year’s historic oil spill. The federal government and the states must follow through to protect this rich ecosystem and national economic treasure…”

Walton County officials travel to D.C. to support RESTORE Act

By The Walton Sun (Walton County, Fl.). Dec. 26, 2011.

“Walton County Commission Chairman Scott Brannon, Commissioner Cecilia Jones and South Walton Tourist Development Council Executive Director Dawn Moliterno traveled to Washington, D.C., for the House Committee Hearing on the RESTORE Act held Dec. 7. The group, there to press Congress to quickly approve the measure, met with Florida congressmen in a show of support for its passage…”

Artificial reefs a plus, but it’s not a ‘habitat’

By Bob Marshall, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, La.). Dec. 25, 2011.

“How can an event be both good and sad at the same time? How can it be an occasion when both congratulations and condolences are in order? Yet, that was the only way to look at Wednesday’s press event marking the start of construction on the Dudley and Kim Vandenborre Artificial Fishing Reef in Lake Pontchartrain between Slidell and Irish Bayou…”

Endangered whooping cranes released into the wild

By NBC33 News (Lake Charles, La.). Dec. 28, 2011.

“VERMILLION PARISH, LA (NBC33) — An endangered species is making a comeback here in Louisiana. Over a dozen whooping cranes were released back into the wild by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries…”

BP’s Top U.S. Officer Called to Testify at Gulf Oil Spill Trial

By Laurel Calkins and Margaret Cronin Fisk (Bloomberg). Dec. 29, 2011.

“Dec. 28 (Bloomberg) — BP Plc’s highest-ranking U.S. executive, BP America Inc. Chairman and President Lamar McKay, was subpoenaed to testify at the February trial that will determine liability for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill…”

NRDA Releases Early Restoration Plan Details for Deepwater Horizon Spill

By The Bradenton Times (Bradenton, Fl.). Dec. 28, 2011.

“BRADENTON — When disaster strikes and the Natural Resource Damage Assessment process starts, early restoration is a way to get natural resources back to normal faster. It can be implemented prior to the completion of the NRDA process, which is important because NRDA’s are complex and can sometimes last many years…”

Protection project a good step

By the Daily Comet (Lafourche Parish, La.). Dec. 27, 2011.

“The money for a restoration project near Fourchon was approved back in 2009. But work — long delayed by bureaucracy — will finally get under way on it…”

Giant tiger prawn invades Gulf of Mexico

By Russell McLendon, Mother Nature Network. Dec. 28, 2011.

“The giant tiger prawn is more than just a jumbo shrimp. It’s a huge, hungry and highly invasive species that could pose a jumbo problem for the already embattled Gulf of Mexico ecosystem. And according to wildlife officials along the U.S. Gulf Coast, it had a very big year in 2011…”

Mississippi River at Vicksburg at all-time high December crest

By Greg Hilburn, The News Star (Monroe, La.). Dec. 28, 2011.

“The Mississippi River, which just reached an all-time high December crest, will fall about a foot before beginning another rise sometime next week, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Vicksburg District’s chief of water control said Wednesday…”

Partners hope to help restore Mollicy floodplain

By the Associated Press. Dec. 28, 2011.

“MONROE, La. (AP) – Meandering natural streams like Shiloh Creek and others in the 20,000-acre Mollicy unit of the Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge, once stagnant and filled with sediment when the land was enclosed for farming, flow again to the Ouachita River…”

Creativity contest boosts awareness of coastal plight

By Mike Nixon, Tri-Parish Times (Houma, La.). Dec. 29, 2011.

“Louisiana students are being offered an opportunity to demonstrate their creativity while thinking of ways to enhance coastal restoration. America’s Wetland Foundation has announced that it offers a Keep your Eye on the Prize competition and $5,000 award to the schools of 10 students who best present through creative endeavors their ideas regarding land loss and coastal restoration in Louisiana…”

Old, used Christmas trees can help fight marsh erosion

By the Associated Press. Dec. 27, 2011.

“NEW ORLEANS — Old Christmas trees can have new life in Louisiana’s marshes when various recycling programs get underway next month…”