Plaquemines fishermen join suit against EPA

Plaquemines fishermen are part of a lawsuit seeking to change the Environmental Protection Agency’s outdated rules regarding oil dispersants.

Venice commercial fisherman Kindra Arnesen is part of a suit filed by the University of California at Berkeley Environmental Law Center last week on behalf of victims of catastrophic oil spills off the coast of Louisiana and Alaska.

Arnesen has been attached to the suit since last spring when the lawyers at UC Berkeley began drawing up documents using information from plaintiffs affected by either the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010 or the Exxon Valdez spill in 1989 off the coast of Alaska. The EPA’s rules regarding use of chemical dispersants like Corexit have been updated several times over the decades, but still allow use of chemicals that the suit claims are just as bad as the oil.

A 2018 study from the National Institutes of Health said the combination of oil and dispersants has been shown to cause coughing, shortness of breath, dizziness and a burning sensation in the throat and lungs. Arnesen has been quoted in multiple articles over the years describing her family’s struggles with headaches, rashes and fatigue that she attributes to exposure to dispersants in the wake of BP’s Deepwater Horizon cleanup efforts.

Plaquemines Gazette

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