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Lawmaker's proposal would halt carbon capture project at Lake Maurepas

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LIVINGSTON PARISH - For Lisa Cothern and Mayhew Barnum, Lake Maurepas is more than just a body of water.

"The first time I learned to swim was in the lake. This is a very vital part of our community," Cothern told WBRZ.

Right now, seismic testing is happening under their lake in an attempt to find a place to store carbon dioxide underneath it. The company doing this testing is Air Products.

A spokesperson for the company says this idea would minimize the effects of greenhouse gases in Louisiana. But some say the testing has already caused damage to the lake and worry what will happen to the water and the wildlife in it if the project moves forward.

"Will there be any more of this for our future kids to come out here and catch fish like this?" Barnum said.

"It's too pristine. There is too many other places they can do this than to take this beautiful lake and destroy it," Cothern said. 

The concerns even have the attention of State Representative Bill Wheat. It's why he is proposing a bill that would stop this from happening for at least another 10 years.

"We want our way of life to continue the way it is in that area," Wheat told WBRZ.

He says there needs to be more time to see if this project is safe.

"We don't want to look down the rearview 10-30 years from now and going 'I wish we would have spent more time finding out more on this project.' I think now is the time to do that," Wheat told WBRZ. 

A group called the Lake Maurepas Preservation Society will be at the capitol Tuesday, hoping other legislators agree with Wheat.

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