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Coastal Louisiana, Energy and the Environment Topic of Upcoming Talk

Environmental historian Jason Theriot will present "Building America's Energy Corridor: Pipelines, Wetlands, and the Breaux Act" on Monday, January 30, at 4:00 in the Holliday Forum of the Journalism Building.

Theriot, a native of Louisiana, Manship School of Mass Communication alumnus, and fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School for Government will speak on the history of oil and gas development and wetland policy in coastal Louisiana, his research in the John Breaux Papers in the LSU Libraries Special Collections, and the impact of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the Macondo oil spill on recent policy developments in the Gulf. The latter is the current direction of his research as a Kennedy School fellow.

With an emphasis on the value of historical research for providing context for public policy-making, he offers a unique and valuable perspective on the ongoing discussion of Louisiana’s efforts to balance economics, energy exploration and extraction, and coastal preservation and restoration. Former U.S. Senator John Breaux’s efforts to secure a steady revenue source for coastal projects through revenue sharing are a central part of Theriot’s narrative and analysis, and the John Breaux Papers provided an important resource for his research.

His dissertation and current book project Building America’s Energy Corridor: Oil and Gas Development and Louisiana Wetlands (University of Houston, 2011), explores the history of pipelines in the Gulf of Mexico, the environmental implications of oil and gas development for coastal Louisiana, and coastal restoration policy and funding.

A reception will follow in Hill Memorial Library, located just across Field House Drive from the Journalism Building.

Theriot will also be featured on the Jim Engster Show on WRKF 98.3 at 9:00 on Jan. 30.

The event is co-sponsored by the following LSU departments: the Coastal Ecology Institute, Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences, Department of History, Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs, LSU Libraries Special Collections, Center for Energy Studies, and the Craft and Hawkins Department of Petroleum Engineering.

For additional information contact Tara Z. Laver, Interim Head of Special Collections, at 578-6546 or

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