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Shades of gray: LSU researcher studies South Louisiana's historical ties to the oil industry
Date:4/20/2011

lient system of land and water management can help current residents face the future challenges that inevitably come with coastal living.

"Oil isn't just a natural resource," said Pasquier. "To understand oil, we need to understand people. With the LSU Coastal Sustainability Studio, my collaborators and I are combining ethnographic fieldwork, archival research, geospatial analysis and design speculation to understand how people live on land and with water in environmentally threatened areas."

Pasquier and his students are in the process of producing eight short documentaries chronicling some of the personal stories of the individuals they have met in Bayou Lafourche.

"We want to have documentation of this way of life, not just for our own research but also for the people of Louisiana," he said. "This kind of local knowledge is unquantifiable, but incredibly valuable."

The photos and documentaries are just a starting point, he said, toward understanding the relationships between the people, the oil industry and the environment.

"This isn't about justifying our use of oil, or being pro-oil or pro-environment," Pasquier said. "It's about assessing the terrible consequences of the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster by taking the time to focus on and understand the big picture, the realities that exist in everyday life for many Louisianans. This is about our history and our culture this is about us and our future."


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Contact: Ashley K. Berthelot
aberth4@lsu.edu
225-278-8694
Louisiana State University
Source:Eurekalert

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