Over 125 Katrina Anniversary Community Events Planned Nationwide

For Immediate Release:Thursday, August 22, 2007For More Information:Aaron Viles, 504-525-1528ADVISORY: Over 125 Community Events Planned for 2nd Katrina Anniversary and Louisiana’s Coastal CrisisFrom Germany to Iowa Activists to Watch Film, Flood WashingtonWhen: Wednesday, August 29, 2007, time dependent upon host’s plansWhere: 125 communities throughout the country, and GermanyWhy: To remind the public about Louisiana’s ongoing coastal crisisOn August 29, 2007, groups will gather in community centers, churches, living rooms and back yards to view Washing Away: Losing Louisiana and show support for rebuilding Louisiana’s coastal wetlands two year’s after Katrina made landfall. The Gulf Restoration Network is sponsoring over 125 screenings of Louisiana Public Broadcasting and award-winning independent producer Christina Melton’s Washing Away. The screenings are being held from Alaska to Florida and California to New Hampshire, with an event being organized as far away as Germany. The documentary artfully illustrates the connection between ever more devastating hurricane damage and Louisiana’s shrinking wetlands by telling the story of six Louisianans struggling to recover from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and Rita. Each of these individuals represents a cross-section of the varied cultural and social “gumbo” that is Louisiana yet they all rely on a healthy coastline to support their communities, lives, and livelihood.The second anniversary of Katrina is fast approaching but the Gulf Coast and its communities still need help. “Levees are not enough to protect vibrant Gulf Coast communities from powerful hurricanes” says Aaron Viles, Campaign Director of the Gulf Restoration Network. “Natural storm defenses, such as wetlands, coastal forests, and barrier islands, are an essential buffer zone between powerful storms and the humans and wildlife that reside along the Gulf Coast yet every 35 minutes Louisiana loses a football field’s worth of wetlands to erosion.” One aspect of the events is to build local awareness and support for Louisiana coastal restoration projects which are currently held up by President Bush’s threat to veto the Water Resources Development Act, which includes $20b in critical projects for Louisiana’s coast and communities.Event hosts are available to speak with the media in: California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Germany. Contact aaron@healthygulf.org for event details and host contact information.###

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