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The BP Oil Disaster is Not Over

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  • December 23, 2011
  • 11:30 am
The BP Oil Disaster is Not Over
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NOTE: This is a guest post from Aaron Viles, the Deputy Director of the Gulf Restoration Network.

Over a year and a half ago, BP’s Macondo well erupted, spewing over 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. We continue to experience impacts from the disaster today. The oil is still washing on shore and the environmental impacts are still being revealed – the BP oil disaster is not over.

We’ve seen record numbers of dolphin mortality — nearly 500 since the disaster, low numbers of whale sharks returning to the Gulf, and deformities on the gills of the Gulf killifish — an abundant bait fish and an important food source for many marine species.

oily footprints in Barataria Bay. Photo: GRNOily footprints in Barataria Bay. Dec. 10, 2011. Photo: GRNEven worse, recent headlines and GRN’s monitoring efforts have underscored that the oil industry continues to abuse the Gulf, failing to learn the lessons of the BP drilling disaster.  Our nation’s energy sacrifice zone is paying the true price of our collective oil addiction.  Adding to the outrage, not a single bill has been signed into law to protect and restore the Gulf or the threatened coastal communities which rely on it.

First, the back story:  Recent research shows clearly that the act of removing oil and gas deposits from beneath Louisiana’s marsh over the past 50 years fueled catastrophic subsidence, playing a huge role in turning nearly 2,000 square miles of coastal wetlands into open water since 1932.  Add in the impacts of 10,000 miles of canals that have been dredged by and for the oil industry, and the role of levees and jetties which keep the Mississippi River from ever rebuilding those wetlands with dirt and fresh water, and Louisiana is faced with an unparalleled coastal wetlands crisis.

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Photo: Taylor Energy well - leaking since 2004's Hurricane Ivan. Dec. 8, 2011. GRN Photo.

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10:38AM PST on Dec 9, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

6:23PM PST on Jan 15, 2012

Has anyone been under a rock so long that they don't know big oil is extremely evil?

8:29AM PST on Jan 9, 2012

This disaster will never be over except for maybe the hundreds of thousands of animals who perished because of our greed and arrogance. And unless we stop the drilling this disaster will be repeated over and over again and humans will not have learned a thing.

This is one reason why I prefer the company of animals to people........................

4:57PM PST on Dec 27, 2011

"One substitute for oil would be oil from ExxonMobil's GE high-yield oil algae. I wish they would get going on it. It would be worth while to both tax crude oil for the pollution it causes and to subsidize the development of algae oil."Grace A.
Yes, that does sound like a much better alternative that we should be doing more with.

1:19PM PST on Dec 27, 2011

noted.....people tend to forget these things after awhile

10:12AM PST on Dec 27, 2011

pretty sick they are killing the planet off and all they care about is keeping oil flowing when things could be done different.

8:37AM PST on Dec 27, 2011

The Macondo leak itself is not over! See this:

7:29AM PST on Dec 27, 2011

Thanks for the reminder.

4:55AM PST on Dec 27, 2011

One substitute for oil would be oil from ExxonMobil's GE high-yield oil algae. I wish they would get going on it. It would be worth while to both tax crude oil for the pollution it causes and to subsidize the development of algae oil.

4:00AM PST on Dec 27, 2011

The only way to stop oil spills is to stop using oil and find alternatives...

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