Questions for DNR About the Blue Ribbons < Update, Answers

A reader asks this and so do we:

Using Louisiana Public Record Law:    La. R.S. 44:1 et seq please, DNR,  reply to these questions.

Questions about the Blue Ribbon Committee Bayou Corne

  • How often do they meet?
  • How many meetings in the past year?
  • Where do they meet?
  • Do they give the residents of Bayou Corne weekly or monthly updates?
  • Where do you obtain the minutes for their meetings? That should be public record.

Louisiana Public Record Law:    La. R.S. 44:1 et seq

UPDATE, Sept. 7

DNR Communications Director had these answers:

How often do they meet?

The full commission meets once a month, in addition to two monthly meetings each for the Stability Subgroup and the Gas Subgroup – though individual members are free to meet with each other to exchange information and ideas in periods between scheduled meetings.

How many meetings in the past year?

22 BRC meetings have been held since the BRC was formed in March 2013 – six full commission meetings and 8 meetings each for the Stability and Gas subgroups.

Where do they meet?

With the exception of the initial meeting and public introduction of the members on April 5, and the 3-day conference and site-visit held from April 29 through the public meeting on May 1, meetings are held through web/teleconference, as the wide geographic spread of the experts selected for the BRC – including members from across the U.S., from Canada and from France – would make arranging regular in-person gatherings prohibitively complex.

Do they give the residents of Bayou Corne weekly or monthly updates?

The BRC has provided updates through the Assumption Parish blog in April, May and June, as well as a report at the May 1 community meeting, and members were on hand at the July 16 meeting to provide a report and information, though other discussions at the meeting pre-empted the formal report. The BRC currently intends to provide its next public update following the September meeting of the full commission.

The members named to the Commission are:

•Pierre Berest, Ph.D., Research Director at France’s Ecole Polytechnique, member of French Commission for Underground Storage Safety, former president of the Solution Mining Research Institute

•David Borns, Ph.D., Geotechnology and Engineering Program Manager for Sandia National Laboratories, research focused on subsurface monitoring for environmental applications, risk assessments and simulations

•J.C. Chamberlain, 12-year resident of Bayou Corne area, 30 years of industrial experience

•Randall Charbeneau, Ph.D., Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research with University of Texas-Austin’s Center for Research in Water Resources, former member of Science Advisory Committee for EPA Underground Injection Control program, former chairman of review panel for EPA’s Robert S. Kerr Environmental Research Laboratory Groundwater Modeling Research

•Doug Duncan, Associate Coordinator of U.S. Geological Survey Energy Resource Program, research focused geologically based energy resources and impacts to environmental and human health

•Blayne Hartman, Ph.D., Geochemist with Hartman Environmental Geoscience, contributor to regulatory guidance documents on vapor intrusion for EPA and several state agencies

•Gary Hecox, Ph.D., Senior Hydrogeologist and GIS Analyst with CB&I, technical lead for CB&I Bayou Corne response team

•James Linn, Ph.D., Geotechnical consultant, former president of Solution Mining Research Institute, former Underground Storage Technology Manager for Sandia National Laboratories

•Denis O’Carroll, Ph.D., Associate Professor for University of Western Ontario’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, research focused on groundwater contamination and remediation

•Will Pettitt, Ph.D., Vice President of Itasca Group, member of microseismic and geomechanics team in ongoing Bayou Corne response

•John Rogers Smith, Ph.D., Associate Professor with LSU’s Craft & Hawkins Department of Petroleum Engineering, consulting engineer for federal Oil Spill Commission on events leading to 2010 Deepwater Horizon accident

•Thomas Van Biersel, Ph.D., Hydrogeologist with Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, former Assistant Professor with Louisiana Geological Survey at LSU, coordinator for Science Work Group advising Bayou Corne response

•John Voigt, Executive Director of Solution Mining Research Institute, President of Voigt Mining and Geotechnical, specializing in salt geology and brine/water inflow evaluation


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