From a release by Gov. Jindal’s office…
Today, Governor Bobby Jindal joined Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser to launch the parish’s first jack up barge and assess the needs of the parish as coastal leaders aggressively work to mitigate the impact of the oil on the state’s coast. Governor Jindal said the “jack up” barge is critical in the oil spill response efforts because it will serve as a central point to support booming efforts and speed up the deployment of resources. The Governor also announced that the Louisiana National Guard will build a float ribbon bridge at the Shell Beach Marina in St. Bernard Parish. The wharf will extend approximately 300 feet and be used to load boats with booms and supplies.
Governor Jindal said, “Through the leadership of Billy Nungesser, Plaquemines Parish is aggressively moving to protect their coastal resources. Around 100,000 feet of hard boom is currently being deployed and the parish is also ready to deploy around 24 miles of absorbent boom to supplement hard booming efforts.
“We’re here today to help Plaquemines Parish launch the first jack up barge as part of our work to mitigate the impact of the spill. This jack up barge will literally save hours of time to deploy resources to fragile areas of our coast. These kinds of barges can also be moved in the event that weather conditions shift and take the oil into another part of Plaquemines Parish – or even another part of our state.
“The entire area east of the Mississippi River remains our top priority since it is the most threatened by the oil spill according to the projections at this time. The plan for the area east of the Mississippi River, developed by the state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority with parish leaders identifies 82 closure points to combat the effects of the oil spill on our coast. We also know there will be additional requests for resources as parishes begin deploying the resources they have and identify additional needs – especially in places where the oil begins to impact our wetlands.
“We are also continuing to monitor the projections showing that it is possible for the oil to move west over the next several days and we are asking BP and the Coast Guard to move quickly in approving the plans for parishes on the west side of the river also. The oil in the water remains very dynamic and constantly changing. That’s why it is so important for BP and the Coast Guard to remain in constant communication with local leaders to ensure that plans to combat the spill are adapting as conditions evolve. Our coast is not just the backbone of our industry in Louisiana, it fundamentally is a part of our way of life.”
More information on the state’s response to the BP oil spill can be found on www.Emergency.Louisiana.Gov.