Marnie Winter remembers seeing the oil spread through the waters of Barataria Bay in southeastern Louisiana. It was 2010, just a few weeks after an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico began the largest marine oil spill in US history . About 4 million barrels of oil were poured into the sea, affecting more than 1,300 miles of shoreline from Texas to Florida . “It was scary,” says Winter, who’s the assistant director of the environmental department at Jefferson parish, one of the three parishes surrounding Barataria Bay. She and other local officials began working with the Coast Guard to keep the oil from reaching the shore, but despite their efforts, the oil began coating the Louisiana marshlands. “It was no surprise that the vegetation would die,” Winter says. Those plants and their roots, however, had been keeping the land from eroding. After […]