For immediate release
October 31, 2017
Contact: Anne Rolfes, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, (504) 452-4909, firstname.lastname@example.org
Press conference: 11:45 am, 1001 Capitol Access Road, Baton Rouge, LA
(Baton Rouge) The Bayou Bridge Pipeline is the focus of two events this week, the first an ongoing, weekly gathering at the Governor’s Mansion in Baton Rouge on Tuesday, the second a rally at the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) on Friday. The theme of the Friday event is “DEQ: Do Your Job.” The events follow an opinion piece in The Advocate by crawfisherman Jody Meche who detailed the harm that the oil industry has done to his livelihood. “Take a boat ride in the Atchafalaya and you can see the impacts of the pipelines and the ongoing accidents. What should be a place teeming with life is instead a dead swamp where crawfish can’t survive,” said Anne Rolfes of the Louisiana Bucket Brigade. “ "We are allowing the Atchafalaya Basin to be killed by the oil industry on our watch."
Louisiana residents have called on Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards to request an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Bayou Bridge Pipeline. The Governor has not replied to recent letters about the Environmental Impact Statement, including an October 17th letter in which five local nonprofit organizations asked the Governor to share results of an Environmental Assessment. “We are baffled that the Governor would not want to know how this pipeline would affect our water and land,” said Renate Heurich of 350 Louisiana. “ What would it take for the Governor to respond? An emergency? Then, it would be too late. Aren’t our people, his constituents, worth an Environmental Impact Statement?“
The groups involved in today’s action, including the HELP Association, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, 350 Louisiana and BOLD Louisiana are highlighting the ongoing crisis in the Atchafalaya Basin. East-West Pipelines cross the Atchafalaya Basin and have restricted north-south water flow such that entire sections of the swamp are dead. Crawfishermen’s livelihoods are at risk, and a national treasure is slowly dying. The Bayou Bridge Pipeline proposed route is through the Basin and would exacerbate this destruction. The company’s long record of accidents further risks oil spills in the area.
Today’s action is the fourth in a series of events calling on Governor John Bel Edwards to request that the Army Corps of Engineers conduct an Environmental Impact Statement.