WWL>Topics>>4-7-14 2:10pm Angela: on the Green Army

4-7-14 2:10pm Angela: on the Green Army

Apr 7, 2014|

Angela talks about the work being done by the "Green Army" with founders Lt. Gen. Russel Honore and Sandy Rosenthal as well as Anne Rolfes of the La. Bucket Brigade and Jonathan Henderson of the Gulf Restoration Network.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

I really really enjoyed talking to the people who are so excited about what's happening in retail in this community and long time coming and a lot of people -- worked very hard. And it is happening and it's happening today. But we're gonna do sort of the shift -- to talk about something that is also happening today. General Russel -- may have retired from the military. But he is very much a part of an army. The green army made up of groups and individuals who want to fight for the environments in Louisiana. General on -- was front and center at the sinkhole still bubbling and by you corn. And in -- -- fighting for environmental controls. Where a company has announced expansion plans. Now he takes his green army to the legislature. To battle house bill 862. That would strip local governments and Levy boards of the right to sue for wetlands damages. Unless they first obtain permission from the department of natural resources. The general on -- is with us today to talk about this and many other things but he is not alone. Green army members sandy Rosenthal. Founder and president of levees dot org. And -- office founding director of the bucket brigade. And Jonathan Henderson of the gulf restoration network are all here and we have a lot to talk about. I'm gonna -- gonna throw would have -- Just take me to Baton Rouge what are you finding. Well refining. Nearly 200 use of bad government. That sort of focus. On the B group Rico forty economy -- there's. You -- -- if it created jobs. And made us rich blow that the outcome of that for two years to become a state. Is that well wetlands are just about destroyed. And in those 200 years ago we gave way to Whitman's two private. Ownership. And then it became exploited on the wall exploration. And canals were put in that would not replace. And hundreds of wall wells -- -- that sector the government out. All remediation and deceptive now on video of poisoning you know weapons. And the estuaries. Where Austro. Or issues can be as much of the fresh fish we use. Those habitats would be destroyed which I'm sure you. Ahead on recently. Or -- rubio and colleagues. The Gulf Coast fisherman overall. I'm concerned about the the quality. As well as what's happening along the coast so I'll legislator has taken -- as their mission. To protect the oil and gas industry is supposed to protect and to people. All air our water -- I'll seafood and now lane and that is the problem and you've got you loan industry. Handed down to them through a series of dialogues. That to spend more time as described by the EPA the legislative -- has been more time protecting. The oil and gas business and to do protecting the people are war and now there and you need only go to CI plays like home. Where years ago. Because the government told a of people homeless it was OK to put an injection -- in the middle middle home. Because this state law allowed it. While of people lived this please don't put rejection well. This is closed to close a -- it went to court and the reason so all gas industry -- you know all three branches ago. Governor's office. The legislature. And audio on our court system and do this bill will seal the deal. That the legislative reports and the laws would be able to tell people you cannot go to court. And try to get your rights represented. -- land mitigate it albeit a place where people can live. When brings -- and so that's what we're up against him and hope to people lose you will listen and help us. Kill bill our house bill is 62. As senate bill 553. Comedies and we. This is really borne from. They the bill that the levee districts. Filed saying that the oil and gas industry must fix those and pay for a all of the canal damage correct and from that all of these bills have. Perked up. Well actually meet the permits when did we did have sufficient law that says you must fix what you Britain right. The legislators have for years allowed them not. June -- and make him go back to fix what you broke. And now we've got accumulation of bad things that have happened that I'll defer to my colleagues here -- or deeply entrenched in this particular battle. This is sandy Rosenthal with the levees dot alike and we have historic legislation that's been filed. Seven years ago -- -- -- Katrina and this historic new legislation. Gave our Libby -- College that they never had before I it changed the way that let people at work here in Louisiana. It did three things remove distractions from the pre Katrina let people it. It is required. That there has to be that the members of the bullet had professional expertise. Including civil engineering and hydrology. And probably most important it removed. The colloquial. Passed by half life. Governance and made it regional governments of this new historically the -- legislation which put us on the forefront. -- all the entire nation nobody has good governance like we have here in Louisiana. And with that good governance we have filed lawsuit on these -- to file a lawsuit against 97 oil gas and pipeline companies and this also is historic. And the legislation is now trying. To stop it. OK so. I'm gonna play doubles after just first second. Those some would argue without the oil and gas industry. Look at the jobs that would be lost. Look at these families that would have to move it -- setter I think the issue is how do we. Stay married. And lived together. And and handle. The where we feel safe -- environments feel safe and yet we can still have jobs and. The good news on that angeles' and office from the bucket brigades speaking is. That if we work to solve this problem of of our -- if we if we would really fully fund the master plan. Which is what the lawsuit could achieve on it would create as a recent study showed over 300000 jobs and that's -- conservative estimates so. On the one hand we've got some really bad news in the state and that is that the oil and gas industries had its way with us for. Half a century and more but the good news is that if we now can reckoned with all the problems it actually would be a boon to our economy. Might it -- a little bit of profit from ExxonMobil. Absolutely but that is not bad for our economy it would be excellent for our state economy and and common cents says that if you start to fill in these canals. What does it take it takes workers and it takes equipment. Stay with us everyone this is a very very important topic and it's something that you can get involved if you have any thoughts give us a call to six so. One at somebody but stay with us we're gonna talk to the green army. Well we are sitting with the green army general. Russell on the ranked. -- also sandy Rosenthal founder and president of the levees dot org and -- this founding director of the bucket brigade and Jonathan Henderson. Of the gulf restoration network and to say they're on a mission is an understatement. Other the mission they're facing right now is the legislature in some of the bills that have been proposed. But that the bigger issue is very clearly sent out by a general on -- of we need to get our land back we need to protect ourselves and I want to talk to Jonathan about what your group is doing. Thank you Angela. Louisiana has lost 19100 square miles of land since the 1930s. And you have to ask yourself what would this country do you. If another country decided to tests and X 19100 square miles of land from the United States who go to war that. So it's kind of fitting that I'm sitting here with retired general. Because we are at war three claim that the Atlanta. But now. That the fight has taken an interest in turn because we have our own lawmakers. Defending. The companies that have. Done that aren't that land. This is this the lawsuit that was filed is not about stopping drilling. It's not about killing jobs it's about holding an industry accountable for the damage that they cause they fixed it and they they broke it. They should fix it. And there is a law that says it should be fixed. That's right in fact if you go on how to golf dot org website -- frustration network's website you'll be able to see today. An outline of permit locations within the southeast Louisiana for protection authority east jurisdiction. That with photos that match permits that were issued where the language is very clear that there were supposed. I put the went back in that place it was before they started did you dredging this can house. But the photos that have taken just as recently as last week are very shocking the staggering. The amount of damage that has been done by by this reckless activity. Is is a serious risk to. The greater New Orleans area. And I think there's just it's hard to sit back in and listen to legislate -- -- beat becomes so disconnected from what happened after Katrina. That the risk is so real it's so it's so. Close to us and we're here we are getting gearing up for another hurricane season. And we don't have that natural storm defenses and that we used to have when I was kid growing up in New Orleans I wanna stay here. I got in this fight because I'm from hero Levitt and I wanna raise a family here but honestly I am when I go out and I see is damage in a regular basis I'm really scared. About about about what. Could potentially happen because we don't have that defense anymore. We should all be frightened this is sandy with levees dot -- and I know -- from my experience right after Katrina that some people feel that qualified personally did not flood I'm not affected. There was almost nobody in the entire country that was completely unaffected. By the flooding in greater new -- right after Katrina we're all affected we all should be concerned we should all be joining the green economy. They. Almost know where to start. A lawsuit has been filed that is really saying to the oil companies exactly what you're saying fix what you broke. Now the legislature in these bills. They're trying these bills are essence saying but that should have been filed because they didn't follow the right process. So what you all are doing correct me if I'm wrong if you're going to different legislators introduced last week saying OK please think about this. So tell us what respond you've gotten -- went to see what they sent. And -- so repeal bill 553 senate bill chaired by senator. In his oilman he admits suit in all languages all -- all right north Louisiana you know hundreds of miles away from that from any chairs a committee on transportation -- seasons -- -- And in this particular -- 553. Was the the right of the people as soon but typically do you know authority the levees or. Too soon. Even dole this has been reviewed and you court review by the time -- -- Reviewed. District judge. Now Austin. Active -- destruction from ago. Witches are going to legislation that would kill. The opportunity for any future body like this appease a levee district to sue. But also make direct -- and government and the democracy. So medical law that doesn't exist right now the only back it up. I'm not months. To kill this lawsuit so. You understand that in democracies will move government is happening in the past allotted one week and I was there and it's an Arab is edited but you wanna make it retroactive. So -- not only kill it from happening in the future monetary goddess lol you lose about presented court. Session started. -- is set to meet him or bring them remarks and he gave his chair to his deputy. And he came and he gave testimony to be committed any -- but what did Bob Bennett's. And he took an honest and OK the -- and -- have arguments. And he went back and assumed this position as the chair of the committee. Seoul I was a fifth person to speak and Republican and is watched as you said we had third man is the ribs and to people. Ought to watch it is wants it he died it took his position and it's chaired -- community. And look intimidating -- all of the other committee members there was certainly there. At a -- is the bill Paris after what I thought was a pretty good. A representation of what of people Louisiana State we need to do news. And if you're gonna do it don't being vindictive and roll it back. Proctor in the US constitution you can do it did not pass a law made it retroactive and so -- sanity can do it. General at this governor it was such a good idea at this law was such good governor and why does it apply only to the flood authority east. Why do you think that is it only applies to the float outside the east the only FR ID. That stood up against big oil and the only -- he who has filed lawsuit should doesn't pass the smell test to me. Well you understand what would be way if this government was beaten to a national level and take Louisiana government the rest of the nation. How many federal laws we won't Qatar. And -- director acted ridiculous until it now because this is not a democracy is a Russian style. Style democracy Islam and run it and whatever has gotten the second poorest state and -- most polluted state even that lakes around a State Capitol polluted. That they said that lets you -- Double small is glued moss bill didn't know birds in moss deal. And you can bring the war so what is this all is well -- build -- fool. And where is it just is mr. jobs that go with it is as well as the economic. Development of prostate. Why do in our itself because we have been good screens in our roads are some -- the worsens I'll where's the money go. And the ball and gas industry said it produce fifteen percentage ops would guess what. The tourist industry and the people of Louisiana create fifteen percentage up. But guitarist emergency food and not -- the -- all the gas companies -- we gotta fix that. You know I'm looking at you and I'm looking at the other people. You are astounding people -- it makes such a name for yourself over many years. For them not to listen to -- It's pretty astounding is that what you're saying they didn't even listen. Well and you know I think I think they're actually messing with the wrong man because we have a general in the room. And they are. Are not accustomed to resistance on this level yes we all are involved with nonprofit organizations and some of us have been. In this for over a decade but it is a new day we have the general in town. And we've -- I think this movement has a stature that we've not had before so. You know last week the committee hearing didn't go our way but. But senator Hadley has been exposed the man -- hundreds of miles away from the -- And yet here he is carrying the ball for oil and gas I'd urge your listeners to call their own senators the number is area code 225. For four to 2040 that's the capitol switchboard. For four to 2040 in Baton Rouge say no on 553. And Angela I'd like to point out that. None of that though let's none of the bills that have been filed by that those that oppose this the fight or -- lawsuit. Are attacking the lawsuit on its merits. It they just don't want this lawsuit to go to court. Because they they can see it very clearly that these companies have violated very clear permit language. And so that's what they're trying to do that trying to avert having having this lawsuit had -- day in court and that's just not right that that's not what our system. Is is designed for -- response that checks and balances. And you know having that though legislate legislature try to intervene and -- that this -- from from having its day in court. Is this is so a wrong a wrong message to not only Louisiana but the rest of the country -- we're looking to the -- the country invests in state. Everyone stay with us we're gonna continue the conversation with the green army right after the go to the newsroom. They call themselves the green army and it's a bunch of organizations and individuals and it's led divide the one and only general -- Retired from the army but just formed a solid. It is on a mission over talking about things that are affecting lives in affecting this state. And our environment. And it isn't just what we're facing in the legislature which is what we're doing right now but other things we'll talk about let's talk about. What the three fuel did on Friday. Going to legislators. Asking them essentially please consider this and what respond should it. Let me first correct the phone number it's 2253422040. Big green army was giving listeners -- test how badly do you wanna communicate with your senators so. Please call us senator at 3422040. Years senator and saying no on 553. But is sandy wanted to give everybody in -- we get on Friday. We'll certainly last five day for a different groups that have. That -- past members of the green nine me. Showed up in front of representative Nielsen Abrams office in front of the building pan out on played a street not far from here actually. To peacefully. Point out that that weapon that -- -- Abramson should recuse himself. -- voting on any of these laws because not only does his law firm. Defend the oil industry but he himself says on his own web page that he defend the oil industry so we just asked him. The reasonably politely or calmly to recuse himself from voting and even discussing those. -- and and this was a coordinated. Who work we were also at the at the data on revenues office in Lafayette he is the represented who's introducing the bill and this is. You know there's there's so many bad bills -- won't get into the numbers but this is yet another bill that tries to medal in the power of ordinary people to suit. On -- and and government bodies to suit the oil industry. On you know that the interesting. Thing is that representative Abramson in particular. Responded with great outrage. And as if we as ordinary people in -- organizations. Who have dedicated our lives stick to this subject. Don't have the right to question an and that's I've found that really quite astonishing. You know it's. -- this is what democracy is right all of the speaking and pointing out a clear conflict of interest I mean the third bullet on represented Abramson. Web profile page on on the list don't -- web site is. Oil industry defense. Now tell me how it is possible that that man ought to be in any discussions of these bills. You know again we want him to get out of the way we want all these bought off representatives and senators senators to get on the way. And let the courts decide and I can tell you if the courts don't. Aren't allowed to decide it's we the taxpayers who are gonna pay for all this damage. And who do you want paying for you know ExxonMobil that made 44 billion dollars last year or you know me and my -- Jonathan Wells there's that that's very true. And there are there are ready communities that there's no second chance and if after day we should have another catastrophic hurricane. Who are losing towns communities -- from the map. No it can't keep up with with the changes on the coast and a I I talked to people and communities all across 'cause all the time. And their their their stories are just got ranging. In it if it's not one hurricane it's it's an oil disaster. Laureates another hurricane and they're dangerous they're scared they're fed up they're stressed out -- have post traumatic stress. And there's there's no help -- That they don't have that they're not very hopeful the state hasn't stepped up stepped up to fund. -- not structural -- master plan which would. Which includes you know moving communities. And -- homes these these kinds of things sect that. That they so desperately need. So that despite is is not just for. It's not just about some environmental organizations that care about the environment. Let debt that that thought that the -- was made up Republicans and Democrats this is bipartisan issue all of us are involved. And you know we talked to people every day from all walks of life who agree. You know it did there's been pose an event that 80% of the people agree that the flight authority -- should go forward. And you know so it's it's a rallying cry. But it impacts all of us and you know we're we're really a lot of communities are really that desperate situation. And we need that money now and those companies did wrong last as a base just have to pay for it. At any given time they can settle. It they can just put the money this is this lawsuit was in the first time anybody is called them. Out on the damage that they cost in my organization nickel frustration is there for twenty years and we've been. You know talking about the damage that the industry is cause Louisiana's what weapons for for for years and years but they've just been able to ignore it. Because it had. -- that does this strengthen muscles of their oil and gas lobby and and the bottom legislatures protecting them. And you know now there's stitches at tidal shift and and and you know we we need this -- If they just when I hadn't fixed it if you stand. And leaving. Right and and and you know John Berry to is one of the members of the southeast protection -- authority. Board and tell the governor threw him off he's made the point that -- the oil industry works in the Sudan and in Nigeria I mean these threats that they will leave. Are really preposterous. You know this is really about -- right. How much money is enough these industries are wealthy the people who work there are wealthy the -- have a lot of money. And I understand not wanting to give up that money but it's time it is long past time to you know they -- greedy oil industry. On. Has enriched themselves while they're off you know as as the general has said that there. At their states and villas all over the world while they you know at the while Louisiana to sinks into the -- stay with -- -- we're not finished with a green army. We're talking with general Russell on the range and his green arm and we have a collar Shannon from -- Saint John Shannon. Well -- and -- I'm Alan I get started working I apologize in in getting this information already. Street canal. Try to get more information on the green army are conjoined well. They'll be here they're here to tell -- There's an analyst button on the green army web site which is go green army dot com. And you can read about it. You know as general honoree has said. This is an idea. Right that we are spreading an idea so it's really important. Tell all of us Shannon that EU. I get involved in the best way that you can maybe by helping some of the groups here that are here on the radio today. And and also by pulling your friends and you know calling your legislators. To 25. 3422040. Ask your senator I'm I'm not sure who it is in nearby Saint John but -- senator to vote no on 553. If you can get a network or your friends and those you know but it tip call that's agree first. It did didn't we need to if you see -- say something smells up and say so and at oak trees -- up. And we need people like you. -- seats -- this goes up and this -- -- do something because if not it will only get worse in your kids won't be able to enjoy. The goodness of this place that you rejoice in -- but -- -- yet and you can start green army our unity -- -- Paris. I doubt you did contact Jeremy and will give you -- designated him noble. Much information I think what you guys -- and -- grade and and I definitely would like to get involved I know my friend who has hit -- thank you. Thank you very much for calling Shannon I have to say in the commercial we were talking about do you remember when my apology to punch train was polluted -- by you saying John was filthy. It was people it was people power that cleaned it up. People I think underestimate their power. They must communicate with their legislators they have to say listen to us we put you there we can take you out. If 80% of the people believe this lawsuit should go on them by golly pay attention to that. Anything else guys. Yet you know this is a challenging issue and no question about it and and there are frustrations. And yet you know we've just heard that on the break one of the house bills -- there. Terrible bills that they were gonna put up this week is now being delayed until next week you know we think that that may be a result of some of the actions that we took last week so. Yes it's a daunting situation but people can do something about it and it and it you know that's what brings meaning to life -- to get engaged on matters for us. Well. We need only go ride along the coast and talk to some of the people live there that you tell you in their lifetime. Coastline. His -- pollute a very seldom use a word environmental justice Bob well activist. All our dynamic -- from New York semis and it at all. Go the warming -- -- -- -- certainly you know -- as hard do we stand at all. Think about what will happen. If we -- dolls seafood restaurants -- applied. What will happen. What would define what defined this city is the seafood and we recruited. Do we wanna stop woods saga. New Orleans crabs from Merrill. Because we've led British Petroleum. South Africa and all. And Exxon. -- now weapons -- estuaries where seafood it can be. -- grow and we have an abundance of catch. That defy this city do we want to start Sam and now favors on reasonable laws we've got all issues but the from. New York quoted from Mexico. Because of Louisiana legislators. All wanted to protect big ball who still have oil wells. That you did cleanup from Katrina and bear down all of their rates in the why does our legislative inside that three miles on Wednesday lose and allowed that to happen. And talk with such bravado. About is about jobs is not about jobs about money. Is about money that goes in their pockets and those who legislators. For donations endure all company in the meantime. I'll coastline and become and always is about pollution. We are we've got it pollution problem in Louisiana. And is it's not just the water is there. We've -- communities in allied. No cola. Where the plants are there. We got moss bill. We've got -- -- we've got Alexandria read this report all of these communities have serious. In bond no problem just from the air. Because we don't monthan air in the 21 century standards we monitor -- like he was fifty years ago. Minimum detection equipment. No automation no reverse 911. No black box in the plants every detail was all. We have to bring this stuff in his 21 century if we don't mean will. I go back to your original things -- if there are laws on the books that say oil companies are responsible to clean -- whether it's the going through the canal -- or these rigs or whatever that are still laying there. Who's in charge of telling them to do well at the bottom bottom is to lose and you drill although enough Bebop. As -- boys out there about your cold has blown that salt -- Texas Brian. And Bill Gates came and put it well and on the meet the water. And there's no requirement goes out to be bonded because Al legislators as not a requirement -- -- well when you could all well and distraught late Rhett. And not be bond. Can you believe that now. I can't put a -- -- when your house unless he's bond. Which you can go on the ground in my distraught mother nature's most serene. -- pieces of terrain. And they'll never be the same again just that was evidently put knew when to try to go in and as salt -- Where thirty years ago to -- Jefferson out of Guatemala way to describe him out -- -- -- all. You notice that this is a travesty. To our democracy at your mother nature. It's a travesty general and I can understand how. Angeles some of you listeners may feel like who will look an idea I'm just one person and that the huge industry here this is sandy Rosenthal would levees dot -- And I can tell you can do something after Katrina and after the levees broke just me and my son just fifteen years old it was just us. And we decided it was up to us. Two to somehow get the people of America to understand that here in the city of new -- This wasn't mother nature that this was bad civil engine hang and we did it it's 25000 supporters and chapters in five states later we did it but it started out just me and my son. And for the and have you out there they wanna help but the green on -- the green on me is real live people that have been harmed. By poorly regulated oil and gas extraction on you have to do was go to go green dot a gold green army dot -- Stay with -- to be right back it has been a pleasure to have the general general Russell on the rent and overall it's. Up golf is sandy Rosenthal and Jon and Anderson they are the green army but it is much bigger than that and you know how to join just go to their web site. Wanna remind everybody birthday is Saturday April 19 and Armstrong park and the good general good to be speaking at 530. You'll wanna hear that thank you all will continue this discussion. Good luck and stay with this video talking another subject in the next hour on PT SD. Very very important as well but again thank each and every one Dana thank tour callers. Now let's go to the news.