Overview of BP Oil Spill in the Gulf
Category : Uncategorized
The following story, NaturalResilience, is a great short report! It covers several items that I wanted you to see, but did not have time to write about. The author does it better than I would have anyway. A few teasers follow but please read this report.
…BP, a company that spent the last decade and a half burnishing its reputation as an environmental paragon, apparently to the detriment of its capacity to manage old-fashioned oil production safely.
…All this, just when things were going so well in the oil-spill business. The number and collective size of oil spills (over 7,000 tonnes) has declined in each of the last four decades.
Speaking of microbes, do not underestimate nature’s powers of recovery. After most big oil spills, scientists are pleasantly surprised by how quickly the oil disappears and the marine life reappears….Indeed, the sea floor in the Gulf is rich in `cold seeps’ — communities of tube worms and other organisms that live off oil naturally seeping from beneath the seabed. (The annual flow of oil through such seeps is about half the total spill.) Hundreds of these clusters of clams and tube worms have been found since the 1980s in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico, living off the microbes that eat the oil.
The final lesson is that the environmental threats that matter are the slow, continuous ones, not the telegenic sensations like oil spills. BP’s spill is known to have killed just over 1,300 birds so far. Just one wind farm, at Altamont Pass in California, was until recently known to kill perhaps 1,300 birds of prey every year. [The wind] industry kills far more rare birds per joule of energy produced than oil does.