The Progressive, May 2021

In the sixty-nine years that Sharon Lavigne has lived on the east bank of the Mississippi River in Louisiana’s St. James Parish, she has seen more than three dozen petrochemical plants turn her community from a rural place with sugar- cane plantations from the state’s history of slavery, tin-roofed shacks, and unspoiled wetlands into an industrial hodgepodge of billowing stacks, bulky tank farms, and noisy railroad tracks.

That’s why, a few years ago, when she heard that the Taiwanese manufacturer Formosa planned to build yet another hulking petrochemical plant in the parish’s 5th District, a mile…

Marcello Rossi

Freelance writer. My works appeared in National Geographic, The Economist, The Guardian, Al Jazeera, Nature, Smithsonian, Reuters, among many others.

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