New Orleans Region Could Escape Severe Econonic Damage From Jittery Market

New Orleans, La. – Allison Plyer of the Community Data Center says New Orleans has been slipping in economic growth since 1980 and the oil industry collapse.

"New Orleans was a really strong economy for a long time before 1980. And in many ways we got used to having oil and gas which is really lucrative and then tourism was something we could kind of fill in the gaps with, but I think that those are starting to really run their course with the amount of productivity and revenue we can generate from them."

Plyer says New Orleans still has several billion dollars coming in post-Katrina recovery money.

"New Orleans area is going to be in pretty good shape, just relative to the rest of the country. We're going to continue to have a stimulus and then we need to just take this opportunity to look to the future so that while we're sort of buffered from the economic storm we can think about where we're going to go next when our money runs out."

She says industries that look promising for future growth in the region include clean-tech industries, oil spill remediation and water management.
For WWNO, I'm Eileen Fleming