The Environmental Law Institute (ELI) celebrates its 50th anniversary this year! In honor of this milestone, ELI is dedicating additional programming each month to a different aspect of our mission. In July, we have been reflecting specifically on how environmental justice informs our work as an organization. ELI's Taylor Lilley and Lovinia Reynolds have authored a blog on environmental justice along the Gulf Coast, where challenges like flooding, land loss, or the destruction of an oil spill hit some communities harder than others. Taylor and Lovinia also reflect on the Gulf Team's ongoing process of learning how best to support and amplify the work of local environmental justice leaders. Read the blog, Bridging the Gulf: Environmental Justice and Spill Restoration.
To coincide with the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees' annual public meetings earlier this month, the ELI Gulf team has updated our informational factsheets on each of seven Trustee Implementation Groups (TIGs): Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Open Ocean, and Regionwide. These factsheets explore how each TIG has committed its restoration funding to date, how much funding remains for the different restoration types, and how the public can engage with the NRDA process. Read on.
The newest installment of our "Why I Participate in Gulf Restoration" blog series shares the story of Alanderia Whitlock, a native of Gulfport, MS. Alanderia is a journalist and community advocate who has recently founded a social media platform for residents of the Gulf Coast to learn about and share opportunities for engaging in their communities. She spoke with us about what motivates her work to restore and improve her community.
Read more about Alanderia in "Lifting up Gulf Voices: A Snapshot of Gulfport, MS Resident and Community Advocate Alanderia Whitlock."
In mid-November, several members of the ELI Gulf Team traveled to Biloxi, MS to attend the 2018 Mississippi Restoration Summit, as well as to meet with representatives from local organizations like Mississippi Coastal Fisheries United (MCFU), Boat People SOS (BPSOS), and the Biloxi NAACP, among others. Both the Summit and these meetings provided opportunities for us to hear from community members about their experiences in the restoration processes and their environmental priorities moving forward.
Read more about our trip in a new blog from Taylor Lilley, one of our new team members.
Event on June 6, 2018 in Gulfport, MS
It has been more than eight years since the start of the BP oil spill. In that time, many steps have been taken to restore and recover the Gulf. This includes the approval of numerous plans, programs, and restoration projects. As Gulf restoration and recovery efforts continue to move forward, how can the public engage and help shape restoration?
To help members of the public better understand how to get involved, ELI, along with Environmental Management Services, Mississippi Commercial Fisheries United, and Public Lab, co-sponsored an event on “Engaging in the Gulf Restoration Processes: How the Public Can Help Shape Restoration.” The goal of this event was to provide participants with tools and information that they can use to more effectively engage in the restoration and recovery efforts.
Click here for the draft agenda.
Event on March 27, 2018 in Gulfport, MS
As a result of the BP oil spill, billions of dollars are going to restoration and recovery efforts in the Gulf, with most of that money going to restoration projects. Although there are many different types, restoration projects can be technical and difficult to understand. So how are members of the public supposed to make heads or tails of them?
To help the public better understand how to evaluate restoration projects, the Environmental Law Institute, in partnership with Steps Coalition, Audubon Mississippi, National Wildlife Federation, and Ocean Conservancy, hosted an in-person event in Gulfport, MS on “Making Heads or Tails of BP Oil Spill Restoration Projects.”
The event convened experts to cover topics such as how to navigate through restoration projects to understand when one “good” project could be prioritized over another, how to deal with scientific uncertainty, and how restoration projects work in practice. The goal of this event was to provide participants with tools and information about restoration projects so that they can more effectively engage in the restoration and recovery efforts moving forward.
Click here for agenda