The Climate Task Force's Final Report is here! Get the rundown in GS4GND's joint statement on the report.
Joint Statement of the Louisiana Policy Table of Gulf South for a Green New Deal on the Louisiana Climate Action Plan
However, the LCAP has significant limitations: it is not, in fact, a plan, but rather an unprioritized list of recommendations that provides no analysis of the relative greenhouse gas emissions reductions of the measures included.
Furthermore, the LCAP fails to include permitting limits that would apply to the emissions of industrial facilities likely to be constructed in the near future. The listed measures also rely heavily on industry-promoted technologies proven to increase rather than decrease GHG, such as carbon capture and sequestration, blue hydrogen, and emissions offset schemes. These false steps will not reduce emissions locally, but will allow industry to continue poisoning both individual bodies and beloved communities in our state. As the Climate Initiatives Task Force’s own data shows, an astounding 66% of greenhouse gas emissions in Louisiana come from industry (compared to 17% nationally), yet this set of recommendations assumes that industrial expansion - and therefore industrial emissions (carbon and otherwise) - will continue unabated.
It is not a certainty that we will actually deploy this plan, much less achieve the goal at hand of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, within the next 28 years. Mitigating against climate change and reducing harms to Louisiana and its people will require the coordinated efforts of state agencies at all levels - executive, legislative, and regulatory. We point especially to the Louisiana Legislature, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, and the Louisiana Public Service Commission as bodies that will have the responsibility of implementing these recommendations. To say that the future habitability of this state depends on the success of this plan is not an understatement, as the blue-tarped rooftops stretching from Houma to Lake Charles attest.
This report must not be an end in itself, but rather, we must treat it as a blueprint for action. Mere talk is not enough. Success can be achieved in a number of ways, which would improve on the LCAP as published:
More than a century of economic dependence on the fossil fuel and petrochemical industries has left the people of Louisiana woefully unprepared for the climate disaster that is already a regular part of our lives. Louisiana does not have time for further inaction on climate, and half-measures are useless in this fight. The good news is, if we do take action, Louisianans will have cleaner air, better health, greater safety, and a more stable economy. We need leaders with the wisdom to act swiftly, the vision to see through false solutions, and the courage to wrest the future of this state from the vise grip of industry.
Louisiana Policy Table of Gulf South for a Green New Deal Members
Angelle Bradford, Delta Chapter of the Sierra Club
Asali DeVan Ecclesiastes, Ashé Cultural Arts Center
Bernard (Ben) Gordon, Pax Christi USA, New Orleans/ Vets For Peace
Beth Butler, A Community Voice
Bethany Bultman, New Orleans Musicians Clinic & Assistance Foundation
Caitlion O'Neill, Loyola Environmental Law Society
Cidney Christie, REMIXEcology
Devon Turner, Grow Dat Youth Farm
Elizabeth Soychak, Coalition Against Death Alley
Ida Aronson, Bvlbancha Collective
Jesse George, Alliance for Affordable Energy
Marion Freistadt, 350 New Orleans and Extinction Rebellion, New Orleans
Michael Esealuka, Healthy Gulf
Nichelle Taylor, (GNOHA) Greater New Orleans Housing Alliance
Peter Digre, Greater N.O. Climate Reality Project
Rev. Gregory T. Manning, Greater New Orleans Interfaith Climate Coalition
Robert Desmarais Sullivan, First Unitarian Universalist Church of New Orleans
Robert Taylor, Concerned Citizens of St. John
Sylvia McKenzie, Louisiana League of Conscious Voters
Tricia Wallace, Née Orleans For Lincoln Beach
Vickie Boothe, 350 New Orleans