environment

Gulf Dead Zone
12:54 pm
Wed August 8, 2012

Vitter: EPA gives La grant to help fight dead zone

U.S. Sen. David Vitter says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will award a $100,000 grant to the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority to help fight the Gulf of Mexico's "dead zone."

Vitter says the grant will be used to help reduce hypoxia, or low oxygen levels in the Gulf, caused by increased nutrients transported from the Mississippi River.

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Drilling Moratorium
12:47 pm
Wed August 8, 2012

Interior Department fights drilling moratorium ruling

Federal lawyers are preparing to defend the Obama administration's moves to shut down offshore drilling in the wake of BP's oil 2010 oil spill before an appellate panel on Wednesday.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was scheduled to hear an appeal by the Interior Department challenging a contempt of court finding U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman issued in February 2011. Feldman chided the department for its "dismissive conduct."

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Assumption Parish Sinkhole
12:39 pm
Wed August 8, 2012

Assumption residents demand answers about sinkhole

Residents near a large sinkhole that opened up in Assumption Parish are demanding answers and a plan of action from their state and local officials.

Officials told them Tuesday night at a community meeting in Pierre Part that they are doing their best to find an explanation for the 372-foot wide sinkhole that swallowed up bald cypress trees and evacuated dozens of people from their homes Friday.

Assumption Parish Sinkhole
1:31 pm
Tue August 7, 2012

Assumption residents to get briefing on sinkhole

PIERRE PART — People living near a large sinkhole that swallowed trees and forced evacuations will be briefed Tuesday by officials.

A community meeting has been set for 6:30 p.m. at the St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church Hall in Pierre Part.

The parish police jury also has set up a blog to keep people informed. The blog is at: www.assumptionla.wordpress.com.

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Low River Threatens Drinking Water
11:22 am
Tue August 7, 2012

Salt water moves up Miss. River, Army Corps reacts

The Army Corps of Engineers says it will construct an underwater sill in the Mississippi River to stop salt water from threatening drinking water supplies in the New Orleans area.

The move is needed because water levels in the drought-stricken Mississippi have gotten so low that the river is nearly at sea level and this is allowing salt water from the Gulf of Mexico to move far inland.

At the latest check on Monday, salt water was on the outskirts of New Orleans.

Environment
11:04 am
Tue August 7, 2012

Officials say diesel found in liquefied swampland

State officials say preliminary slurry water samples pulled from the acre of swampland that liquefied into muck over the weekend indicate the presence of small amounts of diesel hydrocarbons.

The pond of muck, located in Assumption Parish, first appeared Friday night and grew quickly, bending a 36-inch natural gas pipeline buried 16 feet in the ground as the muck expanded. About 150 homes and several businesses were ordered to evacuate after Gov. Bobby Jindal declared a state of emergency for the parish when the slurry area appeared to be expanding.

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Marsh Liquefies
11:32 am
Mon August 6, 2012

Highway 70 reopens near acre of liquefied swampland

NAPOLEONVILLE — Ascension Parish officials have reopened a four-mile section of highway near an acre of swampland that liquefied into soupy muck, toppling tall bald cypress trees and bending a 400-foot-long section of a natural gas pipeline toward the liquid acre.

Environment
2:27 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Gas bubbles-up in Bayou Corne community

Officials in Assumption Parish say gas bubbles in Bayou Corne are producing a diesel-like odor.

An area of slurry was found Friday in a swampy area between Grand Bayou and Bayou Corne, about a half mile from Louisiana Highway 70. The area is at least 2,500 feet from the nearest home, officials say.

State police are monitoring the area, seeking possible additional bubbling sites.

Officials say they don't expect any highways to be closed or evacuations ordered as a result of the increased monitoring.

Oyster Season
2:19 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Wildlife commission sets 2012-13 oyster season

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission has set the 2012-13 oyster seasons based on oyster stock assessments provided by state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists and the public.

Little Lake Public Oyster Seed Grounds and the Vermilion/East and West Cote Blanche/Atchafalaya Bay Public Oyster Seed Grounds will open at one-half hour before sunrise on Wednesday, Sept. 5.

Shrimp Season
12:12 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

State wildlife officials set fall shrimp season

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission says the fall inshore shrimp season will open at 6 a.m. Monday, Aug. 13.

The opening covers the state's inside waters from the Atchafalaya River and Atchafalaya River Ship Channel west to the Louisiana/Texas state line. The state inside waters from the Atchafalaya River east to the Mississippi/Louisiana state line will open 12 hours later, at 6 p.m.

The commission set the season Thursday.

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