The airline filed for Chapter 11 in November 2011 and has been waiting to emerge from bankruptcy to complete a proposed merger with US Airways.
More than 4,500 retired players had been part of the lawsuits. They claimed the league hadn't properly protected them over the years. In the settlement, the NFL does not admit any liability.
Eight years after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans has a new flood protection system -- $14 billion of levees, pumps and flood gates built by the Army Corps of Engineers. Residents, though, don't think that will be enough. The Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority - East, the local levee board, basically, says that as sea levels rise and wetlands down river get washed away, New Orleans will need more help.
And the agency knows exactly who should pay for it. It's suing 97 energy companies, saying they share the blame for the billions that New Orleans is going to have to spend to protect itself.
Trace a map of the Mississippi River south from New Orleans, and you see the land dissolve, from solid to a delicate lace. Zoom in real close on the delta, and you see thousands of sharp, geometric cuts.
"Look at these canals, I mean, they were just going the shortest distance between two points, with whatever's in the middle didn't matter, just cut across," says Dr. John Lopez, who studies the river delta for the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation.
In the 1930s, he says, oil and gas companies started plowing through the swamp to get what was underneath. First, you dug a canal wide enough to fit a barge with all the gear and workers. Then, you drilled down. But maybe you didn't hit quite the right spot.
"You might have a dense network of canals, but if you want to move over 200 feet you've got to dredge a new canal," Lopez says. "And that's why you see these spider maps of oil and gas canals."
This happened all over the swamp, with pretty much zero regard for the land. "For centuries, swamps were the equivalent of wasteland," Lopez says. "The terminology was almost interchangeable."
Then, around the 1970s, science proved the value of marshland -- as a habitat for all kinds of species, and for flood protection. The state listened, and passed regulations. But the damage was done.
Today the canals are still used -- for industry and recreation. Out on the water, we pass a barge ferrying equipment offshore. Hissing, clicking natural gas wells…the so-called Christmas trees of pipes, valves and knobs stick up from the water, just a few feet away from crab traps.
The landscape doesn't look damaged, but, Lopez says, "These canals are a lot wider than what they were dredged. They've eroded. That's about 200 feet right there."
Likely double its original size, he says. The canals let in saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico. That eats away the marsh. So when a hurricane swirls across the Gulf, walls of water now build, unchecked, and push in to New Orleans, 50 miles away.
"The loss of the buffer means that more water washes against the levee system, John Barry says. "Then we have to build larger stronger more expensive protection systems than we would otherwise have to do.
Barry wrote a history of Louisiana flooding, "Rising Tide." He's also vice president of the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority - East. "At least for a few more weeks," he says.
Maybe only a few more weeks, because his agency is suing the energy companies, and Gov. Bobby Jindal has demanded it drop the lawsuit. Energy is Louisiana's largest industry.
Barry says the oil companies should pay their fair share. "I don't say the industry has done nothing. I do say it hasn't done anything like nearly enough."
Louisiana has a master plan for flood protection, but not the billions needed to fund it.
Some parts of the state don't want to wait. They're paying for the work themselves. And they say they need the oil companies' help. Southwest of New Orleans, watery Terrebonne Parish has its own system of flood gates.
Reggie Dupre directs the Terrebonne levee district. "We built this system on our own," he says.
The oil industry owns much of the land here. Dupre says the lawsuit could endanger key relationships. "I need right-of-ways and places to build mitigation," he says. "Well, I get free right-of-ways and very good cooperation from these companies."
And oil and gas companies are not to blame for land loss here, he says. It's the levees upriver that killed this marsh -- cut off the land's access to fresh water.
Louisiana politicians, scientists and lawyers are in for a long battle over that question. What is to blame for disappearing wetlands? And who will pay for protection as sea levels, and risk, keep rising.
Production assistance on this story provided by Nicholas Gremillion.
The two orders would stop private individuals from importing U.S.-made military surplus weapons from abroad and close a loophole that allows some felons to skirt background checks.
The Tomatina Festival, the famous free-for-all in which partiers pelt one another with ripe tomatoes, was held in Bunol, Spain, Wednesday. The big party was a bit smaller this year — for the first time, the town sold tickets for 10 euros (about $13.25) to be part of the huge food fight.
The young, secular revolutionaries who led the 2011 uprising against the Hosni Mubarak regime have been pushed to the margins of the current confrontation in Egypt. They also feel they are battling two sets of authoritarian forces — the military and the Muslim Brotherhood.
The young, secular revolutionaries who led the 2011 uprising against the Hosni Mubarak regime are have been pushed to the margins of the current confrontation in Egypt. They also feel they are battling two sets of authoritarian forces — the military and the Muslim Brotherhood.
Miley Cyrus' provocative performance at the MTV Video Music Awards got some people clapping, but many more fingers wagging. Host Michel Martin talks about the cultural implications of twerking.
Tighter lending standards for certain student loans have left many people looking for other ways to pay for school. Critics say historically black colleges and universities are hit particularly hard. Host Michel Martin speaks with David Wilson, President of Morgan State University, about the situation.
When President Obama asked Americans to examine their own racial biases, photographer Jane Critchlow took that to heart. She approached black men in her neighborhood and asked to take photos with them. Host Michel Martin talks with Critchlow about her project, and the men's reactions.
As thousands of people gathered in the nation's capital to mark the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, many more activists participated online. Host Michel Martin talks about social justice in the digital age with Michael Skolnik of Global Grind and Corey Dade of The Root.
There's been a lot of talk this week about the U.S. and its allies staging a military intervention in Syria after increasing evidence of President Assad's regime using deadly chemical weapons against Syrian civilians. The debate over intervention still rages -- as does the civil war in that country. One weapon being used in the conflict is the power to shut down the internet. Mashable reporter Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai has been the latest on this story.
When we last checked in with government statisticians, they though the economy grew at an annual rate of 1.7 percent. Today, a surprisingly strong revision upward. Now, gross domestic product grew 2.5 percent from April to June, which helps build the argument that the Federal Reserve will ratchet back on its stimulus program. Diane Swonk, chief economist at Mesirow Financial in Chicago, tells Marketplace what this means for the economy.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will help direct an attack on Syria, if and when it happens. But for now he's in Brunei for the ASEAN Plus meeting, far from the drums of war. It's an opportunity to build military-to-military ties — and sell weapons. But the prospect of action in Syria is never far away.
Josef Ackermann, one of the most famous businessmen in Europe, has resigned as chairman of Zurich Insurance under highly unusual circumstances. The move was connected to the apparent suicide of the company's chief financial officer, Pierre Wauthier.
"The unexpected death of Pierre Wauthier has deeply shocked me," Ackermann said in a statement. "I have reason to believe that the family is of the opinion that I should take my share of responsibility, as unfounded as any allegations might be."
Reporter Jo Fahy has the latest on the story from Zurich.
Dr. Donald Berwick ran Medicare and Medicaid right after the Affordable Care Act became law. Now he's running for governor of Massachusetts. But he hasn't left behind his work as a health quality oracle.
Mars had more of the key minerals needed to get life going, a researcher says. He theorizes that some of the rocks that have traveled from the Red Planet to Earth had those elements and gave life here a kick start.
The Dutch social affairs minister warned recently about the negative consequences of immigrants from Bulgaria and Romania. The debate comes as the Netherlands — and Europe — still feels the effects of the global recession.
Yasin Bhatkal, a co-founder of the Indian Mujahideen, is arrested in what authorities have described as a major blow to Islamic terrorism in the region.