The suit was brought by landowners in Mississippi, who claim that oil and coal companies emitted greenhouse gasses that contributed to global warming that, in turn, caused a rise in sea levels, adding to Hurricane Katrina’s ferocity.The premise behind the suit is basic - since oil and coal companies willfully caused the emissions of billions of tons of CO2, they are at least in part responsible for the damage of the ferocious hurricanes of 2006. While people will certainly argue with the science, there are many models and predictions out there that state that warmer ocean temperatures caused by global warming create fiercer hurricanes (see the IPCC). So it is not like the plaintiffs are grabbing for straws. In my non-legal opinion, it seems unlikely that this suit will actually be something that will in and of itself shake the foundation of our nation. But the implications could be great due to the precedent that this is setting. Is it right to sue a company (or group of companies) for their greenhouse gas emissions? What grounds does anyone have to sue an American company over a Chinese one? A start-up polluter vs. a company that emitted millions of tons but went out of business 30 years ago? Thoughts? Comment below. Pls. remember to offset your carbon footprint, such as through our program, Live Climate, here.
100 years ago, the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley in Northeastern Louisiana was a wetland ecosystem that supported 22 million acres of forested habitat. After decades of land conversion for agriculture this region now supports less than 20% of that forested habitat. With help from the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Trust for Public Land, Carbonfund.org is working to restore some of this area to its original splendor. The Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge Reforestation Project will restore approximately 1,870 acres of native bottomland hardwood forest that will re-establish habitat for an estimated 400 species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish including threatened and endangered species such as the Louisiana Black Bear and the Florida Panther. The newly forested area will also benefit the local community by providing suitable areas for hiking and biking, a destination for school groups and an opportunity for nature photography. Reforestation and forest preservation carbon offset projects are part of the global warming solution. Forest-based carbon offset projects fight climate change by sequestering carbon dioxide emissions from the atmosphere in trees and soil and have many co-benefits for the community and local wildlife. Forest preservation creates jobs, maintains and expands wildlife habitats, protects biodiversity, and improves local environmental quality. This project was the first reforestation project in North America to be validated to both the Voluntary Carbon Standard and the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standards. To learn more about this and other Carbonfund.org carbon offset projects visit www.carbonfund.org/projects.