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Louisiana environmental issues lead to creation of coalition

Over the past few months, many environmental leaders in Louisiana have been watching as one environmental issue after another begins to affect the state. These issues have far-reaching consequences. As a result, the "Green Army," which is the name given to a loose coalition of environmental leaders concerned about the state's future, has been created. The hope is that many environmental groups will be able to move their focus from local issues to issues that have a bigger impact.

John Barry, the former vice-president of the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority - East's board, has created a nonprofit organization called "Restore Louisiana Now." This organization is determined to stop intervention by the Louisiana Legislature against a lawsuit filed by the SLFPA-E. That lawsuit was filed earlier this year against almost 100 gas and oil companies and claims that oil and gas operations, like dredging and building pipelines and canals, has caused extensive damage and injury in the state's coastal areas.

This is just one of the environmental issues that the "Green Army" hopes to address. Other issues include the Bayou Corne sinkhole, more drilling at Lake Peigneur's natural gas storage caverns and salt water infiltrating Baton Rouge's aquifer.

The coalition is led by Russel Honore, a retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General. Gen. Honore has spoken at an event that was addressing the lack of action at the Bayou Corne sinkhole. This was when Gen. Honore said that he realized he needed to get more involved. He's made it clear that he's not getting paid for his involvement, nor is he trying to run for office.

The Green Army had about 40 people at its first "get to know the issues" meeting. Gen. Honore says that policy change is needed in order to see a change in the environmental issues. The coalition plans to head to the State Capitol right before the next legislative session begins and show their support for such policy changes.

Environmental issues will not fix themselves. It requires dedication and persistence to make people stand up and take notice. Experienced law firms can help by providing options and rights for their clients.

theadvocate.com, "Environmental groups create 'Green Army' to take on key La. Issues" Amy Wold, Nov. 17, 2013

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