The state Department of Natural Resources says Lake Peigneur
area residents were not at risk during a January power failure that caused a
loud disruption at a nearby natural gas storage facility. DNR has released a
report on the incident , at the request of Sen. Mary Landreiu. Officials say
that the The Jefferson Island Storage and Hub facility’s safety systems
operated properly, preventing any risk. The power failure, which was caused by
a nearby vehicular accident, triggered a brief shutdown at the facility.
According to the report, the Jefferson Island Storage facility has a fail safe
blowdown system which releases pressure in the event of a power failure. This
caused a volume of natural gas to be vented out into the atmosphere from a
section of the plant’s piping for approximately three minutes. Commissioner of
Conservation James Welsh writes that “based on a review of operators procedures
for abnormal operations, records pertaining to the event, and by the onsite
field review at the facility, the Office of Conservation agents found that the
facility’s blowdown system found the facility’s blowdown system performed as
designed and further, did not find any apparent probable violations pertaining
to the Jan. 29, 2008 event.
The investigation was conducted after a petition from local
residents and a request from Sen. Mary Landrieu. Nara Crowley, Vice President
of the Save Lake Peigneur community organization, told The Daily Iberian that the investigation wasn’t handled properly. “Everyone is outraged,” she
said. “The DNR completely disregarded all the statements and testimonials that
area residents provided about the incident. What did the DNR investigate? They
got all their facts and figures from AGL.” Save Lake Peigneur was formed by Jefferson Island
residents concerned about the natural gas storage facility, which deposits gas
in the salt dome underneath the lake. Save Lake Peigneur has complained of
strange bubbling that occurs at the lake and also has opposed the facility’s
plans for expansion.
Is it a crime for citizens to photograph, video, or take notes of a police officer in the line of duty, or a right protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution? Locally, such activity, as witnessed recently, will at the very least result in a night spent behind bars.
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
Episcopal School of Acadiana’s Dr. Joshua Caffery, chair of the school’s English Department, is headed to Washington, D.C., and the Library of Congress as the latest winner of the Alan Lomax Fellowship in Folklife Studies.