Coastal Climate Justice with the Foundation for Louisiana's Liz Williams Russell

Foundation for Louisiana's climate response program.

On this episode, Peter Ravella and Tyler Buckingham talk to Liz Williams Russell, who directs the investments and activities of the Climate Justice Portfolio at the Foundation for Louisiana. The program works to build people power, advance just policies, and cultivate new narratives in support of economic opportunity, environmental justice, and equitable development throughout Louisiana. Existing in the tension between the world as it is and the world as it could be, she has the job to both dream and implement. As a New Orleans native with deep roots in Louisiana, Liz is no stranger to disaster. She interrogates the ways that land use, planning, and development solidify inequities, allowing tremendous variations in investment, social services, real estate valuation, criminalization, and access. She is committed to rooting out injustice and bringing about a more healthy, just, and vibrant Louisiana.

Peter Ravella & Tyler Buckingham

Peter and Tyler joined forces in 2015 and from the first meeting began discussing a project that would become Coastal News Today and the American Shoreline Podcast Network. At the time, Peter and Tyler were coastal consultants for Pete’s firm, PAR Consulting, LLC. In that role, they worked with coastal communities in Texas, Florida, and North Carolina, engaged in grant writing, coastal project development, shoreline erosion and land use planning, permitting, and financial planning for communities undertaking big beach restoration projects. Between and among their consulting tasks, they kept talking and kept building the idea of CNT & ASPN. In almost every arena they worked, public engagement played a central role. They spent thousands of hours talking with coastal stakeholders, like business owners, hotel operators, condo managers, watermen, property owners, enviros, surfers, and fishermen. They dived deep into the value, meaning, and responsibility for the American shoreline, segment-by-segment. Common threads emerged, themes were revealed, differences uncovered. There was a big conversation going on along the American shoreline! But, no place to have it. That's where CNT and ASPN were born.