A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans said last week that coastal erosion lawsuits filed by Louisiana coastal parishes against oil companies need to be decided in state, not federal courts.
The order in the case, Parish of Plaquemines v. Chevron USA, will open the door for 41 other lawsuits to be argued in state courts as well. The lawsuits allege that oil and gas exploration and production activity, such as cutting canals through marshes, have resulted in the loss of coastal habitat due to saltwater intrusion and later erosion.
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