The Economics and Politics of Fisheries Disaster Recovery: Louisiana's Response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita Public Deposited

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  • On the morning of 29 August 2005, Southeast Louisiana was decimated by the winds and flood surge associated with Hurricane Katrina. Shortly thereafter, Hurricane Rita played havoc on the Southwestern part of the state. Louisiana's commercial seafood industry, already on the decline for a number of reasons, including declining output prices, was further crippled as a result of damage to vessels, docks, processors, and the distribution sector. Even those fishermen who were able to fish immediately after the hurricanes experienced problems selling the product due to the decimation of the distribution sector and the paucity of local customers. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has been active in attempting to rebuild the commercial industry and, with the aid of economists at Louisiana State University, is attempting to more accurately estimate the damage caused by the hurricanes. Complicating the estimation of these damages is the fact that many of the fishermen, dealers, and processors were geographically displaced and unavailable for interviewing purposes. Estimates of damages must therefore be calculated using alternative methodologies, two of which are outlined in this paper. Additionally, the paper provides coverage of ongoing rebuilding efforts and the potential strength and weaknesses of these efforts in light of recent the economic trends facing the commercial fisheries in Louisiana.
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  • Caffey, Rex, Hamady Diop, Walter Keithly and Richard Kazmierczak. 2006. The Economics and Politics of Fisheries Disaster Recovery: Louisiana's Response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. In: Proceedings of the Thirteenth Biennial Conference of the International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, July 11-14, 2006, Portsmouth, UK: Rebuilding Fisheries in an Uncertain Environment. Compiled by Ann L. Shriver. International Institute of Fisheries Economics & Trade, Corvallis, Oregon, USA, 2006. CD ROM. ISBN 0-9763432-3-1
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