Chemical Plant Threatens to Destroy Mossville, LA Community that was Founded by Freed Slaves

Signs on a homeowner's lawn in Mossville, La MOSSVILLE ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION NOW
Signs on a homeowner’s lawn in Mossville, La
MOSSVILLE ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION NOW

A project led by the South African chemical giant SASOL threatens to erase the small community of Mossville, La., which was founded in 1790 by Jim Moss, a freed slave,Mother Jones reports.

Over the last half century, the small, predominantly African American unincorporated enclave on the outskirts of Lake Charles in Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana, has been encroached upon by more than a dozen industrial plants, the report says.

But the latest initiative (pdf) threatens to wipe out the community. The project, expected to cost as much as $21 billion, could earn more than $2 billion in incentives (including $115 million in direct funding) from the state’s floundering budget, Mother Jones reports. It could potentially infuse $46.2 billion into the state’s economy, according to a study by Louisiana State University.

The project, one of the largest industrial projects in the history of the state, has the support of Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal, who is widely considered to be a presidential candidate in 2016. And after a community meeting on Tuesday, the proposal is one step closer to fruition, the report says.

But the massive plant would come with a huge environmental toll. It could produce more greenhouse gases than any other facility in the state. The initiative would also likely result in the end of the 224-year-old settlement of Mossville, a poor community of 500 people that for years has been forced to accommodate industrial facilities no one else wanted in their backyard, the report says.

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Source: The Root | 

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