Stories tagged with Gulf of Mexico oil spill

Black eye

Spill-rate lowballing reflects badly on government cleanup oversight

Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.): “Okay. What is the current spill per day today?”Lamar McKay, President and Chairman of BP America: “The current estimate is 5,000 barrels a day.”– From hearings (PDF) held by the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, Wednesday, May 12, 2010 Still from a May 11 video of oil and gas streaming from the larger of two leaks in the Deepwater Horizon well. For weeks, government officials, politicians, oil industry executives, and journalists — including me — have been repeating the “fact” that oil is gushing from the Deepwater Horizon leak at the rate of 5,000 barrels …

Unheard Voices from the Gulf Coast

The Vietnamese community of greater New Orleans makes up roughly half of the fishing industry in the area. They help to supply more than one-third of the nation’s seafood. As our country faces a potential shortage of Gulf shrimp, crab and fish, these workers face complete economic uncertainty. Low-income communities and communities of color have the most to gain from a clean-energy future and the most to lose under the current dirty economy. Their livelihoods are prisoners of, and sadly victims to, our current energy policy. We are seeing this tragic tale unfold in neighborhoods across New Orleans. Johnson Nguyen, …

Casting dispersants

Want to phase out a hazardous substance? Dump it in the Gulf!

A U.S. Air Force plane sprays chemical dispersants over the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.Photo: Deepwater Horizon ResponseEPA chief Lisa Jackson, along with other EPA officials and representatives from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, gave a press teleconference on use of dispersants in the Gulf Wednesday afternoon. I attended and got in a question. I wanted to hone in on the hazardous ingredients in the dispersants now in use, which I discussed at length in a post last week. Last week, the government’s Deepwater Horizon Response website confirmed the use of two dispersants: Corexit 9500 and Corexit …

The People Have Spoken?

Poll results on energy, climate, and offshore drilling are all over the map

More evidence that polls are to be taken with a thousand grains of salt:  A few days ago, former Obama pollster Joel Benenson released the results of a survey showing that 61 percent of those queried support a comprehensive clean energy bill that would charge energy companies for carbon pollution, and 39 percent said they are more likely to support it in the wake of the Gulf oil spill. Now an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll concludes that 60 percent of Americans support more offshore drilling, despite the gurgling mess in the Gulf of Mexico.  And 53 percent think the potential …

Trollin' trollin' trollin'

[updated] Lisa Murkowski (R-ExxonValdez) opposes forcing oil companies to pay to clean up oil spills

On the Senate floor a few moments ago, Sens. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J), and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) asked for unanimous consent to pass their Big Oil Bailout Prevention Liability Act of 2010, which would raise the liability cap on offshore drilling accidents from $75 million to $10 billion. Unanimous consent simply means the bill passes without all the usual Senate procedural folderol. Now, ask yourself: Who could object to this? Does anyone really think BP should only have to pay $75 million — a drop in the bucket relative to what’s necessary; an even smaller drop in the …

a breath of death air

What’s in the air along the Louisiana coast?

Working to clean up the Gulf oil spill Cross-posted from NRDC’s Simple Steps blog. Venice, La. – “You shoulda been out here last evening” said Carey, the shrimp boat captain who took me out to South Pass today. He saw that I was taking air samples with a hand-held monitoring device, and recounted the strong smell and choking fumes he had suffered through yesterday when he went out to rescue a stranded boat in the Main Pass channel. “Those guys on that boat had it worse than me” he added. “They were pretty sick – headaches and sick to their …

BP: Beyond Promises

A quick look back at BP’s pre-spill greenwashing

The BP oil spill in the Gulf is heartbreaking, so is the “It wasn’t our fault” denial. A little walk down memory lane (and not too long of one) should give us good reason to be skeptical of oil giant, BP. In my new book, I talk about the power of skilled corporate greenwashing to inoculate against public outrage when something tragic, and preventable, like this BP “accident” occurs. I wrote: BP’s rebranding has been so effective that the company’s rep has been relatively untarnished despite incidents that should have bruised its reputation. One was an explosion at BP’s Texas …

I pod

Feed your ears with new Victual Reality podcast

I now have a regular podcast about food politics called Victual Reality, part of the Edible Communities project Edible Radio. Look for me there every other Tuesday — and for other terrific podcasts. I’ll also be posting my ‘casts here on Grist.  In my latest one, which went live this morning, I talk to Richard Charter, an authority on how offshore drilling affects coastal ecosystems. When the Deepwater Horizons oil rig exploded off the coast of Louisiana last month, Charter’s expertise became invaluable to anyone trying to understand what the ongoing spill meant for the Gulf of Mexico, one of the …

two views, both oily

From above and below, Gulf oil leak looks bad on video

The Waterkeeper Alliance provides aerial footage of the Gulf oil leak, shot last week. And BP, after initially refusing, releases underwater footage of the leak. From above: From below: One more from last week: Writes Jed Lewison at DailyKos, “BP is trying to position itself as a responsible corporate citizen, but its [temporary] decision to keep this video secret from public scrutiny in the midst of what is likely to become the single largest oil spill in American history underscores the fact that first and foremost, BP wants to protect its own interest, everyone else be damned.”    

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