Our next stop -- the Bayou Corne Sinkhole -- is much more sobering, illustrating deep and extensive environmental damage in the region, and lack of capacity to deal with it. The area once drew people because of its economic promise as an alligator and crawfish nesting site; in 2012, the ground started shaking and bayou waters began to bubble. An underground salt dome that was used to store crude oil had begun to collapse, creating a huge, sucking hole in the earth. Residents had to be evacuated. In this collection -- even more in-the-making than others -- we want to foreground how the industrial activity has undermined the very grounds of life in southern Louisiana.
We also want to start from the sinkhole to think about the kinds of education, research and collaboration that will be needed to steward and remediate (to the extent possible) site of environmental damage in Louisiana and elsewhere.