Southern Louisiana is the most endangered land in the United States. Some risk is due to man made factors, but much of the risk is secondary to long-term geologic and weather cycles that have periodically raised and then inundated the United States well into the Midwest. The core threat to people and culture in Southern Louisiana is building on land that was already headed for inundation before there was any human intervention. Man has hastened the process, and, with levees, denied its existence.
This Blog will consider the factors affecting coastal areas including global warming. While due attention will be paid to short term issues such as evacuations and disaster response, the primary objective is to explore how man can retreat from endangered coastal areas in a orderly fashion. If such a retreat can be envisioned and enabled, then lives, money, and cultures can be saved. If not, pursuing current strategies of denial and patronage-driven public works projects will only assure that all three are lost.
Edward P. Richards, JD, MPP
Director, Program in Law, Science, and Public Health
Professor of Law
LSU Law Center