For Immediate Release
Contact: Anne Rolfes, Founding Director, (504) 452-4909
When: 9:30 am, Friday, November 8th
Where: Convention Center Blvd & Henderson St. Location may change depending on security. For details call Jenna Deboisblanc (504) 289-3379
(New Orleans) President Obama’s stop in New Orleans on Friday morning is being met with emphatic calls to end the dirty energy and chemical export economy he is showcasing and instead transition to an economy that is safer for the environment, industrial workers and public health. “Our air and our rivers are filled with chemicals, workers risk their lives to go to their jobs and our asthma and cancer rates are soaring from being the nation’s sacrifice zone for energy and chemical production,” said Anne Rolfes, Founding Director of the Louisiana Bucket Brigade. “President Obama and the so called leaders of Louisiana believe it’s worth it to sacrifice our state, this time for other countries’ energy and chemical needs. Well, it’s not worth it.” Tulane students, environmental groups and public health advocates will be near the port today advocating for a different economy and a different future.
Among the projects that use Louisiana as an export base:
· The three coal terminals in Plaquemines Parish, including the RAM Terminal proposed next to the Myrtle Grove diversion (part of the Coastal Master Plan).
· Shell’s LNG terminal in Ascension Parish
· The numerous new construction and expansion projects along the Mississippi River, including production of ammonia, methanol and polyvinyl chloride.
· Louisiana refineries are exporting more oil than ever, according to the Mid Continent Oil and Gas Association.
This development is in contrast to the boom in other states in renewable energy and technology, businesses that do not exact a toll on the health and environment. Low natural gas prices are an underlying reason for increased exports from Louisiana. “Other states – even those with the export capacity and infrastructure - realize we are in the 21st century and they won’t accept these dirty businesses,” said Anne Rolfes. “We need to expand our vision of economic development and pursue safe development, not fuel our addiction to oil and chemicals that will leave our state polluted and destroyed.”
The Louisiana Bucket Brigade is an environmental health and justice organization supporting neighborhoods’ use of grassroots action to create informed, sustainable communities free from industrial pollution.