Oil industry lawsuit supporter re-nominated in Louisiana

A board member for the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East, who has become known for his support of a lawsuit against the oil industry, was re-nominated for a position on the board on Sept. 18. The controversial suit against pipeline, oil and gas companies alleges that the companies damaged coastal areas that serve as a buffer against hurricanes and that they have not done enough to correct the situation.

The SLFPA-E board member is a geology and marine biology expert. His term formally expired in July, but board members argued that his knowledge of coastal matters and qualifications make him indispensable to the panel. He was re-appointed to the only available technical position, and Governor Bobby Jindal must formally appoint board members who are nominated. The board member’s re-nomination is expected to maintain the 5-4 majority in the SLFPA-E that favors the lawsuit.

Gov. Jindal’s office has opposed the lawsuit based on the belief that it exceeds the protection agency’s authority and that it costs taxpayers money. Oil industry supporters in the state have spoken out against it, and the Legislature voted to stop the suit retroactively. The actions of the Legislature are currently being challenged in court.

Maritime law involves a lot of regulations. Issues that arise regarding the effects of oil, gas and other industries on local water supplies are a leading reason of why an environmental suit may be filed. Those who wish to file such a lawsuit could contact an attorney with experience in environmental litigation. He or she could provide assistance and advice to plaintiffs through legal proceedings.

Source: Daily Journal, “In defeat for Jindal, panel backs supporter of oil lawsuit for seat on flood control authority”, Kevin McGill, September 18, 2014

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