Louisiana Must Begin Planning for a Future with Less Oil

Louisiana must begin planning for a future with less oil

Illustration by Kenneth Harrison (NOLA.com)

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the sailing ship industry when the steam engine came along and Louisiana’s political leadership in these early stages of climate change.

And that led me to the conclusion that our Coastal Master Plan should have a companion initiative: Master Plan for Coastal Economic Survival.

You see, back in the late 19th century some segments of the sailing ship industry tried to ignore or downplay the role of steam even as the technology and facts made it obvious a revolution was underway. Eventually they found themselves out of work.

Today, Louisiana’s majority political party, the GOP, is repeating that mistake.

The measurable evidence continues to confirm the science that global warming is here. Costly impacts already are being felt and will become even more crippling in the decades ahead unless we reduce the major cause: greenhouse gas emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.

Oh, and Louisiana’s own scientists say a major cause of that warming – sea level rise – could submerge most of the state below I-10 in the next 40 years. In fact, that’s what they hope to spend $92 billion trying to mitigate.

But Louisiana’s GOP leaders have chosen the sailmaker’s strategy – on steroids. Not only are they continuing to ignore or disparage the proven facts about climate change and its causes – they are actively fighting any attempts to legally address those causes.

Read the rest of the article at The Times-Picayune.