Oil and Gas in the Water

the third of three parts

A congressman insisted “This is not an environmental disaster…”  Then ExxonMobil’s Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Response Plan promises to protect the walruses, walruses in the Gulf waters!  There’s no shortage of bumbling and stupidity.  Mistakes were made.  There’s not much to smile about here.

Noted: April 22 was the day that the Deepwater Horizon rig sunk and the oil spill started.  It was also Earth Day (the 40th anniversary of Earth day)!

I’ve initiated a series of studies trying to place this disaster into historical and global perspective.  Eventually I’ll try to write something else based on what I learn.  Some websites and topics of interest are included here.

Next time, I’ll provide a sort of “postscript” on various plans and hopes to help stop this underwater “gusher” and what to do about it once the flow stops.

A very interesting list of oil spills with going back to 1910:


A New York Times timeline of oil spills:


“This isn’t a case of bad luck. The only surprising conclusion — based on reports of other near misses — is that BP hasn’t had more accidents.” :


This is a Louisiana lawyer’s blog.  They have an interesting perspective on it all here.  This pointed me toward some interesting stories:


the problems facing the Atakapa-Ishak Indians:


Some say that the oil companies have treated Louisiana far worse than they do Alaska.  They take the money and run and give little back to the people.  Some even say that it compares with how oil companies treat people in “Third World” countries.  No, nothing could be that bad, could it?.

Another example (from the world of “big oil”), Chevron in Ecuador:


The recent documentary film Crude is based on this story.  Then this:

“With new estimates that as many as 2,5 million gallons of oil could be spilling into the Gulf of Mexico each day, the Niger Delta has suddenly become a cautionary tale for the United States.” New York Times June 17


Yes, there’s been fifty years of continuous oil spills in Nigeria!  The BP-Gulf of Mexico disaster is shocking and thoroughly awful.  Yet I’m only beginning to wrap my head around the wider context of oil pollution worldwide.  Oil and gas get into the water.

Then some of it gets into vehicles and is used as fuel.  This then gets into the air and contributes to global warming.  It’s a vicious cycle but what can we do? Well we better think of something.  It’s later than you think!


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