Van Heerden was supposed to keep that secret. He didn't. He told me, on camera -- knowing the floodwater of official slime would break over him. He was told to stay silent, to bury the truth. But he told me more. A lot more.
"I wasn't going to listen to those sort of threats, to let them shut me down."
Well, they did shut him down. After he went public about the unending life-and-death threat of continued oil drilling and channeling, LSU closed down its entire Hurricane Center (can you imagine?) and fired Professor van Heerden and fellow experts. This was just after the University received a $300,000 check from Chevron. The check was passed by a front group called "America's Wetlands" -- which lobbies for more drilling in the wetlands.
In place of Van Heerden and independent experts, LSU's new "Wetlands Center" has professors picked by a board of petroleum industry hacks.
In 2003, Americans protested, "No Blood for Oil" in Iraq. It's about time we said, "No Blood for Oil" -- in Louisiana.
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