Gulf of Mexico

Indianapolis Zoo

You wouldn’t think Indiana and Louisiana have much in common. But that hasn’t stopped the Indianapolis Zoo from developing a partnership with The Nature Conservancy in Louisiana. Their goal? To draw attention to the Gulf of Mexico’s Dead Zone.


Elaine LaLanne joins us today to remember her late husband, fitness legend Jack LaLanne. A pioneer in the world of health & fitness, Jack took his message of healthy living and exercise to the homes of millions of Americans each week on television for over three decades. Even into his late 90's, Jack was still advocating a healthier way to live, eat, and stay active. He would have turned 100 years old today, and Elaine reminisces on the good times she had with Jack over the 50+ years they were married.

Also, LSU Oceanographer Professor Dr. James H. Cowan, Jr. joins us to discuss his opinion on the current state of the Dead Zone in the Gulf of Mexico. On August 18th, Dr. Nancy Rabalais, Dr. Cathy Kling, and Dr. Eugene Turner were on the show discussing the topic, and Dr. Cowan is here today to disagree with some of what they said.

Author April Smith joins us for the last segment today to close out the show and promote her latest book, the WWI based historical fiction novel A Star for Mrs. Blake. The book tells the story of five American women, Gold Star Mothers, who voyage across the Atlantic to visit the graves of their sons who died in battle during The Great War. Before boarding the ship, the women meet for the first time and over the course of their journey their lives are changed forever.

Also, News Reporter for LRN Michelle Southern joins us for a few quick minutes between guests to discuss an "accident" that happened yesterday while she was interviewing Louisiana State Senator J.P. Morrell over the phone.

Professor Cathy Kling of Iowa State University, Nancy Rabalais of the Louisiana Marine Consortium, and Professor Eugene Turner of LSU's Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences join the show for the first two segments to discuss the Gulf of Mexico's "Dead Zone." The three of them have been co-authors on recently published journal reports on the "Dead Zone" and they discuss and explain the causes of it, the impacts of it (both economically and environmentally), as well as ways to help reduce it.

Also, pollster Bernie Pinsonat joins us in studio to close out today's show. He and Jim discuss the upcoming November elections in Louisiana, as well as the recent remarks from Governor Bobby Jindal on his bid for the White House.

Jonathan Henderson of New Orleans-based Gulf Restoration Network is flying Louisiana's coast looking for oil. As usual, he's found some.

"I just noticed something out of the corner of my eye that looks like a sheen that had some form to it," he says. "We're going to go take a closer look and see if there's a rainbow sheen."

It's a target-rich environment for Henderson, because more than 54,000 wells were planted in and off this coast — part of the 300,000 wells in the state. They're connected by thousands of miles of pipelines, all vulnerable to leaks.



One reason the world is not yet running out of oil and gas is that energy companies keep finding ways to extract those resources from more and more difficult places, including far under the ocean. Royal Dutch Shell announced plans, yesterday, for the world's deepest offshore floating oil and gas facility.

NPR's Debbie Elliott reports.