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Archive for the 'Oil Spills' Category

Chemical dispersants move oil out of sight & out of mind

Gulf oil spill slick. Photo by U.S. Coast Guard
gulf-oil-spill-slick-2010, US Coast Guard

When chemical dispersants are sprayed onto the oil that’s floating on the surface of the Gulf of Mexico, it makes the oil disperse into the water. It makes it sink.

Whether the oil that has been changed into tiny droplets by the dispersants will then be  rendered harmless by natural organisms … or it will coat the ocean floor and cause further damage to underwater creatures … all depends on which group of scientists  you are listening to at the moment.

Whatever dispersants do, good or bad, it’s my guess that BP loves them for yet another reason. Once sprayed by the dispersants, the black, shiny, OBVIOUS oil sinks out of sight … and out of mind. And the news media stops writing about it, and people stop thinking about it.

Let’s see, now, what were we talking about? /Gary

Posted on Thursday, June 3rd, 2010
Under: Oil, Oil Spills | 1 Comment »

Gulf Leak Meter Widget by PBS NEWSHOUR to include live oil spill video

Oiled brown pelican. Photo by Flickr user IBRRC used under a Creative Commons License.
oiled brown pelican by IBRRC

I just received the following very interesting news release:

(Arlington, VA – May 24) The PBS NEWSHOUR today unveiled an updated version of its popular Gulf Leak Meter widget. The original widget has been modified to include a live video feed of the oil leaking into the waters off the Gulf Coast.

PBS NewsHour’s oil widget ( was originally released on May 9, offering readers the opportunity to choose among several scenarios based on BP’s and other experts’ best guesses of the spill’s size. The NewsHour continues to update the widget to include more perspectives on how much oil might be flowing from the leak and on May 17, factored in ( BP’s report of some success in siphoning 2,000 barrels of oil per day from the leaking well.
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Posted on Wednesday, May 26th, 2010
Under: Oil, Oil Spills | No Comments »

Gulf Oil Spill: 7 experts steer oil spill conversation into fresh waters

NASA satellite photo of Gulf oil spill, taken May 17, 2010. Photo by Flickr user NASA Goddard Photo & Video used under a Creative Commons License
NASA oil2

In an effort to broaden the conversation about the horrific Gulf Coast oil spill, seven Fellows of the Post Carbon Institute in Santa Rosa, CA, offer their perspectives on largely under-reported aspects and outcomes of the disaster.

I think you’ll find the following comments to be QUITE interesting. /Gary
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Posted on Thursday, May 20th, 2010
Under: Ocean, Oil, Oil Spills | No Comments »

BP controls information on how much oil is REALLY leaking into gulf

Satellite photo gulf oil slick. (NASA Goddard Photo and Video)
NASA Goddard Photo and Video

These quotes were in a story about the gulf oil spill in the New York Times on Sunday (May 16):

“Scientists studying video of the gushing oil well have tentatively calculated that it could be flowing at a rate of 25,000 to 80,000 barrels of oil a day. But the government, working from satellite images of the ocean surface, has calculated a flow rate of only 5,000 barrels a day.

“BP has resisted entreaties from scientists that they be allowed to use sophisticated instruments at the ocean floor that would give a far more accurate picture of how much oil is really gushing from the well.

“‘The answer is no to that,’ a BP spokesman, Tom Mueller, said Saturday. ‘It is not relevant to the response effort, and it might even detract from the response effort.'”
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Posted on Monday, May 17th, 2010
Under: Oil, Oil Spills | 2 Comments »

Pet fur being used to help Gulf of Mexico oil spill cleanup

Matter of Trust is a San Francisco nonprofit that has established a process for donating animal fur and human hair to create absorbent booms to soak up and remove oil from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Companies like Pet Food Express and Petco are collecting pet fur from their grooming salons and donating the fur to Matter of Trust. With nearly 1,000 grooming salons, Petco claims to be shipping about a ton of donated fur per day.

Yes, that’s a LOT of fur. Unfortunately, there’s also a LOT of oil to be soaked up. /Gary

Posted on Wednesday, May 12th, 2010
Under: Oil, Oil Spills | 1 Comment »

Gulf oil spill: Leak meter shows how much oil is leaking into the gulf

Gulf oil spill. NASA satellite image acquired May 9, 2010 at 19:05 UTC. (NASA Goddard photo)
NASA Godddard photo May 9, 2010

How much oil has been leaking into the Gulf of Mexico? PBS has a “Leak Meter” to help us get an idea of how much oil is being pumped into the Gulf of Mexico.

Check it out for yourself at

Posted on Monday, May 10th, 2010
Under: Oil Spills | 1 Comment »

Gulf Oil Spill: New real-time gulf crisis website goes live

Gulf oil spill disaster (U.S. Coast Guard)

The Center For Biological Diversity has launched a “Gulf-Crisis Website” that they will update daily with information on how big the spill is (total gallons spilled, continuously updated)) … where it’s hitting shore (spill maps) … what species are suffering the impacts … how the rescue effort’s going … what if there’s a spill in the Arctic … how often spills occur … what you can do? … and more.

Want to see what’s happening with the Gulf Oil Spill? Check here:

Posted on Friday, May 7th, 2010
Under: Oil, Oil Spills | 3 Comments »

BP — AND — government are responsible for Gulf oil spill

Gulf oil slick (U.S. Coast Guard)
gulf-oil-spill-slick-2010, US Coast Guard

It’s Not Just BP That Bears Responsibility for Spill; Government Is Responsible Too

Friends of the Earth’s president, Erich Pica, had the following response to President Barack Obama’s remarks on May 2 in Louisiana about BP being responsible for the Gulf spill:

“President Obama was correct when he said BP is responsible for this spill. But the government bears responsibility too, as it failed to protect U.S. waters and the people who depend on them. Offshore oil drilling is inherently dirty and dangerous. In order to fulfill its responsibility to protect its citizens and territory, the government must establish a permanent moratorium on offshore drilling.”

More information about offshore drilling, the oil spill and Friends of the Earth’s response can be found at

Posted on Thursday, May 6th, 2010
Under: Oil, Oil Spills | 2 Comments »

Gulf oil spill: Only 1 out of 10 oiled birds are usually ever found

Oil spill and important bird areas (American Bird Conservancy)
american bird conservancy2

Bird Group Warns that Oiled Birds Found Onshore May Be a Fraction of the Total Toll on Birds From Gulf Spill

As bird rescue groups prepare to deal with hundreds or potentially thousands of oiled birds resulting from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf, American Bird Conservancy President George Fenwick cautioned that the toll from the spill may be far greater when the unseen impacts are factored into the environmental disaster still ongoing in the Gulf of Mexico.
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Posted on Wednesday, May 5th, 2010
Under: Birds, Oil, Oil Spills | 1 Comment »

Gulf oil spill: This website is a good place to follow the action

Pelicans being treated at International Bird Rescue Research Center, Fairfield, California.

The International Bird Rescue Research Center in Fairfield, California, is one of the most experienced waterfowl rescue and oiled bird cleaning facilities in the world.

IBRRC has sent a team of their experts, led by IBRRC director Jay Holcomb, to the oil spill area in the Gulf to help set up and staff rehabilitation centers in areas of Louisiana, Alabama and Florida where the oil might come ashore.

Jay has worked on over 200 oil spills and rescue efforts around the world.
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Posted on Tuesday, May 4th, 2010
Under: International Bird rescue research Center, Oil, Oil Spills, Waterfowl | 4 Comments »