A one-month expedition this fall to the Lower Mississippi River Basin studied many issues, including the fact that Mississippi Delta lands are being lost at the rate of 1 football field per hour. There are 4 reasons for this:
- USACE dams upstream allow barge traffic to travel this river highway; but those dams and levees block natural sediment flow downstream to replenish coastal lands
- Climate Change: Sea level rise and erosion from more intense storms
- The degrading “lacework” of Delta lands created by oil and gas canals built to access to rigs but never removed
- The subsidence (lowering or capsizing) of land due to cavities created underground where oil and gas reserves have been emptied
“The Great Invisible” adds to the land loss issues described above as it addresses the BP oil spill and responsibilities of oil and gas industries to repair damages incurred during extraction to fisheries, local livelihoods and residents’ health to the land loss issues described above.