American Energy, Imperiled Coast

Oil & Gas Development in Louisiana’s Wetlands.
by Jason P. Theriot

American Energy, Imperiled Coast explores the tension between oil and gas development and the land-loss crisis in coastal Louisiana.

Theriot’s first academic book is a history of energy development and environmental change along Louisiana’s shrinking coastline. The book explores that rapid growth of the pipeline infrastructure along the coast in the post-war era, followed by the gradual recognition of the coastal erosion problem and the herculean efforts to fight it beginning in the 1980s. Theriot pieces together decades of political, economic, social, and cultural undertakings that clashed in the 1980s and 1990s, when local citizens, scientists, politicians, environmental groups, and oil and gas interests began fighting over the causes and consequences of coastal land loss. The mission to restore coastal Louisiana ultimately collided with the perceived economic necessity of expanding offshore oil and gas development at the turn of the twenty-first century. This book bridges the gap between these competing objectives.

Map of the pipeline infrastructure along coastal Louisiana and historic land loss area