WHEREAS, Louisiana’s coastal bays, estuaries and territorial sea are extraordinarily productive habitats for finfish, shrimp, crabs, oysters, sea and shore birds and other species that support the in and near shore aquatic food chain and ecosystem, and
WHEREAS, Louisiana’s coastal wetlands and barrier islands substantially define and contribute to the productivity of coastal waters but are under severe stress due to erosion and subsidence and the encroachment of saltwater that is accelerating wetland loss, and
WHEREAS, from time to time proposals are made to discharge brine from mineral production and the creation of caverns within salt domes for the storage of natural gas, petroleum or other products, into Louisiana coastal waters, and
WHEREAS, the discharge of brine into coastal waters is another perturbation to an already stressed system that has the potential to adversely impact fish & wildlife resources and habitat, not only by the discharge of concentrated saltwater but by the impacts of the placement of the infrastructure (pipeline) to convey the discharge that may disturb and damage wetlands, oyster reefs and other productive waterbottoms, and
WHEREAS, the cumulative damage of oil and gas development and other development activities is widely recognized and has led to the enactment of laws that prevent further abuse and, considering the risks that the effects of past damage and abuse now pose to coastal resources and communities, it is prudent to adopt a policy of prevention going forward, and
WHEREAS, there are environmentally-acceptable alternatives to the disposal of brine in Louisiana’s estuaries, coastal bays and nearshore waters such as injection into confined subsurface saltwater zones or discharge in deep offshore waters.
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Louisiana Wildlife Federation opposes the discharge of brine into Louisiana’s estuaries, coastal bays and territorial seas.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the LWF urges state and federal agencies with such authority to prohibit brine discharges to Louisiana estuaries, coastal bays and territorial seas.
Adopted by the Louisiana Wildlife Federation in convention assembled, February 28, 2010 at Cypress Bend Resort, Many, Louisiana.