Near the end of the article, it states that BP will spend $500 million over the next 10 years to determine the impact of the spill on the environment, along with the environmental impact of the toxic oil dispersant they are using. It sounds like they’re using Louisiana as a lab to do experiments on.
Almost 70 miles of Louisiana coast are soaked with oil. That’s more land than the seashores of Maryland and Delaware combined, Gov. Bobby Jindal said Monday after Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano were flown over the devastated coast. Napolitano said the federal government would “disperse it, boom it, burn it,” to keep more oil from coming ashore. But St. Bernard Parish President Craig Taffaro had a different idea. “I would be betting the plan is to let us die,” Taffaro said.
Federal officials delivered messages similar to Napolitano’s, but none wanted to address an incident that occurred last weekend, when BP and the Coast Guard abandoned 44 boats loaded with booms on Louisiana’s shores as thick black oil flooded into the marshlands.
BP was nowhere in sight as the oil inundated the fragile marshes. And the oil company has provided little explanation about what made it jump ship rather fight the oil as it hit land.
BP has continued to spray two chemical dispersants into the Gulf despite an order by the Environmental Protection Agency to end the spraying on Sunday night. The chemical dispersants, made by Corexit, are banned in BP’s homeland, the United Kingdom, because of their toxicity.
Ever since the April 20 explosion of the BP oil rig the Deepwater Horizon, oil has spewed unchecked from a broken well at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico. At least 6 million gallons of crude have already gushed into the Gulf, though the estimates vary widely. Some experts have said that every week the spill has dumped more than the 11 million gallons the Exxon Valdez released off the Alaskan coast in 1989, in what was formerly the worst oil spill in U.S. history.
Far below Louisiana’s fragile wetlands are reserves of crude oil and other valuable minerals. Local residents speculated on Monday that BP is after the mineral rights, which it cannot touch while the wetlands are alive.
It’s a grim prospect, perhaps far-fetched, but not for those who live along the 70 miles of oil-saturated coast, who wonder what the heck happened this weekend when BP refused to fight the incoming oil.
“We can actually see birds that are covered in oil,” Gov. Jindal said Monday at the news conference in Galliano.