Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Hydrocarbon Hucksters: Lessons from Louisiana on Oil, Politics, and Environmental Justice

Some of you may have been following my story long enough to remember that one time that I went to law/grad school and earned myself some fancy degrees. (You know, "that one time," a.k.a. that extremely difficult five-year period of my life in which I got diagnosed with RA right in the middle and struggled find a treatment that worked, retain my identity, and finish what I started. That time.)

In any event, lest you think my degrees currently do nothing but gather dust and cost me monthly student loan payments, I am excited to announce the publication of the second book I have been lucky enough to co-author!! And this time my name is even on the cover!!

This book has nothing to do with the topic of this blog, but it is a big achievement in my life so I wanted to share
Hydrocarbon Hucksters: Lessons from Louisiana on Oil, Politics, and Environmental Justice

Hydrocarbon Hucksters is the saga of the oil industry's takeover of Louisiana--its leaders, its laws, its environment, and, by rechanneling the flow of public information, its voters. It is a chronicle of mindboggling scientific and technical triumphs sharing the same public stew with myths about the "goodness" of oil and bald-faced public lies by politicians and the captains of industry. It is a story of money and power, greed and corruption, jingoism and exploitation, pollution and disease, and the bewilderment and resignation of too many of the powerless. Most importantly, Hydrocarbon Hucksters is a case study of what happens when a state uncritically hands the oil and petrochemical industries everything they desire. Today, Louisiana ranks at or near the bottom of the fifty states on virtually every measure related to the quality of life--income, health, education, environment, public services, public safety, physical infrastructure, and vulnerability to disasters (both natural and man-made). Nor, contrary to the claims of the hydrocarbon sector, has there been much in the way of job creation to offset all of this social grief.

The authors (one a scientist, the other an environmental lawyer) have woven together the science, legal history, economic issues, and national and global contexts of what has happened. Their objective is to raise enough national awareness to prevent other parts of the United States from repeating Louisiana's historical follies. The authors are uncle and niece, a generation apart, who have melded their conclusions from two separate tracks.

Dying to read more? You can totally buy my book on Amazon!!  ~;o)

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