Latest news: November 11, 2011

Gulf Coast lawmakers optimistic about garnering 80% of BP oil spill fines

By Bruce Alpert, Times-Picayune (New Orleans, La.). November 9, 2011.

“WASHINGTON — Despite support from President Barack Obama and influential congressional Republicans, a bill that would channel 80 percent of BP oil spill fines to the Gulf Coast is far from enactment…”

Cypress swamp near Lower 9th Ward will be restored as hurricane defense

By Mark Schleifstein, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, La.). November 10, 2011.

“Local leaders announced Thursday the beginning of a project to restore a key area of cypress swampland near the Lower 9th Ward, an effort they called essential to protecting the metro area in the event of another major hurricane…”

Sewage latest weapon in Louisiana’s coastal fight

Reported by: John Snell, Fox8TV (New Orleans, La.). November 10, 2011.

“New Orleans– John Taylor, a lifelong ninth ward resident, recalls trapping for nutria in the 1960’s in the area of swamp known as the “central wetlands.”…”

Louisiana refuses to sign BP-Coast Guard oil spill cleanup transition plan

By Mark Schleifstein, The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, La.). November 9, 2011.

“The state of Louisiana has refused to sign off on a Coast Guard-BP plan to transition from a cleanup program to a long-term recovery in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, charging that the plan leaves coastal beaches and wetlands vulnerable to continued oil contamination with no guarantee that BP will be required to pay for future cleanups…”

Study: Change method to assess gulf oil spill

By Kate Spinner, Herald-Tribune (Sarasota, Fl.). November 10, 2011.

“Current federal requirements to assess polluters for repairing environmental damage will likely be inadequate for the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster, according to a new report to Congress…”

Louisiana Forced to Start Adapting to Climate Change

By Susan Buchanan, Huffington Post. November 11, 2011.

“South Louisiana residents know the coast is losing wetlands to the Gulf–at the rate of a football field an hour–as well as they know how the New Orleans Saints played last weekend. Climate change may be controversial but state and local agencies and utility-giant Entergy Corp. are beginning to adapt to new weather trends. Adaptation could be key to the coast’s future…”

Federal lawyers seek to overturn ruling on Corps of Engineers’ liability

By Sandy Rosenthal (, Times-Picayune (New Orleans, La.). November 10, 2011.

“Yesterday in New Orleans, federal lawyers attempted to overturn a November 2009 ruling that found the Army Corps of Engineers guilty of shoddy maintenance of a shipping channel in eastern New Orleans and thus financially liable for damages that occurred during Hurricane Katrina…”

Feinberg: Shrimpers to get more generous claims offers

By Dan Murtaugh, Press-Register (Mobile, Al.). November 11, 2011.

“MOBILE, Alabama — Oil spill claims czar Ken Feinberg said this week that he’ll announce a new, more generous, payout formula for shrimpers in coming weeks…”

Jindal announces millions for levee work, bayou

By Nikki Buskey, Daily Comet (Lafourche Parish, La.). November 10, 2011.

“RACELAND — Local levee protection, coastal-restoration efforts and drinking-water quality will benefit from $11.3 million in grants for local projects announced by Gov. Bobby Jindal in Raceland Wednesday, officials said…”