Louisiana’s wilderness paradise is again threatened, but Cajuns mad as hell are preparing for a battle destined to become bloody unless America’s new president can halt the planned assault on them. The battle, however, will not be televised. In fact, this author can all but guarantee a mega-media blackout, including most alternative media outlets. The reader is not to know that at a Bayou Bridge pipeline permit hearing last week in Baton Rouge, opponents warned that if the permit is granted, an all out battle to stop the pipeline will likely turn the Atchafalaya Basin into a Standing Rock protest. In absence of presidential humane intervention, the situation could be deadly in Cajun Country.
(Feature photos credit: DeSmogBlog)
Energy Transfer Partners’ proposal is for a Bayou Bridge pipeline be the tail end of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) route and that it cut through the heart of Louisiana’s Cajun Country, the world’s phenomenal Atchafalaya Basin.
How special is the Atchafalaya Basin? Want to see? Emmy Award winning journalist and filmmaker Bill Rodman detailed nature photographer CC Lockwood’s return to America’s largest swamp wilderness, thirty years after his acclaimed Atchafalaya book and National Geographic article. Surprisingly, Lockwood found the swamp’s most interesting and threatened inhabitant has vanished. The story Rodman weaves explores the degree to which the Atchafalaya Swamp has changed – naturally and culturally – since the great flood of 1927, while revealing an account of one of America’s last and most intriguing frontier communities. Atchafalaya Swamp Revisited (below) received Suncoast Emmy Awards for Documentary Program and Writing in 2003.
(Above Youtube Video Credit: Bill Rodman. www.billrodman.com)
The Dakota Access pipeline made 2016 international news when security working for the pipeline company turned dogs on unarmed protesters, followed by tear gas and water cannons in sub-freezing temperatures. Over several months, thousands traveled far and wide to unite in solidarity with the indigenous peoples of Standing Rock area demonstrating against the pipeline’s completion. Protestors, calling themselves “water protectors,” faced what the United Nations called Energy Transfer Partners’ security forces’ “cruel and inhumane” treatment.
“Police marking numbers on bodies of protesters detained in dog kennels was a last straw for many Americans, including some police officers, sheriffs and other law enforcement officers, who stepped down, refusing to follow orders to assault peaceful protesters protecting the right to clean water. Millions are demanding that President Barack Obama intervene in the $3.8 billion DAPL construction, the site of daily atrocities.
If DAPL is completed, fracked oil from North Dakota will flow to Patoka, Illinois, to existing pipelines leading to Nederland, Texas, and pass through a newly completed pipeline to Lake Charles, Louisiana.
If permitted, the last 163 mile stretch would be the Bayou Bridge pipeline. It would link Lake Charles in western Louisiana to refineries in St. James Parish — cutting across the phenomenal national heritage area that is America’s largest natural swamp, the Atchafalaya Basin.
The Atchafalaya Basin is home to endangered species, attracts bird watchers and other wildlife tourists, and is the hub for the commercial crawfishing industry. It is already littered with thousands of abandoned wells.
Energy Transfer Partners and Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s battle over the pipeline is at an impasse. The fight, however, is destined to re-ignite once President-elect Donald Trump takes office. He owns stocks in the oil company Energy Transfer. The oil company helped pay for his election: Energy Transfer CEO financially contributed to Trump’s campaign. And that, dear reader, is why this story and others like it will be censored.
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