By Jason P. Theriot
In the post--World battle II period, Louisiana's coastal wetlands underwent an commercial transformation that positioned the sector on the middle of America's energy-producing hall. through the twenty-first century the Louisiana Gulf Coast provided approximately one-third of America's oil and fuel, accounted for half the country's refining potential, and contributed billions of greenbacks to the U.S. economic climate. this day, hundreds of thousands of miles of pipelines and similar infrastructure hyperlink the state's coast to grease and fuel shoppers national. in the course of the process this old improvement, notwithstanding, the dredging of pipeline canals speeded up coastal erosion. at present, eighty percentage of the U.S.' wetland loss happens on Louisiana's coast even though the nation is domestic to simply forty percentage of the nation's wetland acreage, making glaring the big unin-tended environmental rate linked to generating power from the Gulf Coast.
In American power, Imperiled Coast Jason P. Theriot explores the strain among oil and gasoline improvement and the land-loss obstacle in Louisiana. His ebook deals an enticing research of either the striking, albeit ecologically harmful, engineering feats that characterised business development within the area and the mounting environmental difficulties that threaten south Louisiana's groups, tradition, and "working" coast. As a historian and coastal Louisiana local, Theriot explains how pipeline know-how enabled the growth of oil and gasoline supply -- studying formerly unseen pictures and corporate files -- and strains the industry's far-reaching environmental footprint within the wetlands. via particular learn provided in a full of life and available narrative, Theriot items jointly a long time of political, fiscal, social, and cultural undertakings that clashed within the Eighties and Nineties, whilst neighborhood electorate, scientists, politicians, environmental teams, and oil and fuel pursuits started combating over the factors and outcomes of coastal land loss. The undertaking to revive coastal Louisiana finally collided with the perceived fiscal necessity of increasing offshore oil and gasoline improvement on the flip of the twenty-first century. Theriot's booklet bridges the distance among those competing objectives.
From the invention of oil and gasoline lower than the marshes round coastal salt domes within the Nineteen Twenties and Thirties to the emergence of environmental sciences and coverage reforms within the Nineteen Seventies to the big repercussions of the BP/Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, American strength, Imperiled Coast eventually finds that the traditional and man-made forces chargeable for quick environmental switch in Louisiana's wetlands over the last century can in basic terms be harnessed via collaboration among private and non-private entities.
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Additional resources for American Energy, Imperiled Coast: Oil and Gas Development in Louisiana's Wetlands
According to one rather graphic depiction of these wetlands, “the slime, called water, stands over this festering purgatory in depths from knee deep to many feet. It also provides a happy home for myriads of leeches, snakes, water-bugs, and alligators, to say nothing of micro-varmints such as typhoid, dysentery, etc. ” 49 The outsiders had good reason to fear and despise this harsh terrain. Emmitt Sellers, who worked for Texaco in the marshes around the Bayou Sale ﬁeld, experienced a common occurrence of wetland operations.
When they eventually found Giliasso living in seclusion in Panama, company ofﬁcials negotiated an agreement with him for an exclusive operating license for a submersible drill barge. In 1933, the barge rig Giliasso, built at a shipyard in Pennsylvania, drilled its ﬁrst well at the Lake Pelto salt dome in Terrebonne Bay. The new rig reduced operating time by 20 percent. By 1935, Texaco’s ﬂeet of seven submersible drill barges had each drilled six wells per year and saved the company $600,000 in operating costs.
Dennis Neal recalled that the Texans initially treated the Frenchmen with disrespect: “I’ll tell you, some of these tool pushers there, boy they didn’t like the Cajuns down here . . they gave us a nickname . . ” 48 The term “coonie” or “coonass” became a derogatory ethnic slur originally attached to the Cajuns by non-Cajuns and was used extensively throughout the oil ﬁelds by the Texas oil men. Over time, however, some outsiders began to appreciate the work ethic of the Cajun folk and became more accepting of the Cajuns’ cultural norms, their cuisine, their ﬁsheries, and other local delights.