Monday, April 26, 2010

Government Response to Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill

An explosion last week on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig near Louisiana caused an oil spill that now covers more than 1,800 square miles of the Gulf of Mexico (read about the spill in today's New York Times). Officials are trying to activate a blowout preventer to seal off the well.

You can read more details about oil spill monitoring, containment, and cleanup on this page of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA's) web site. NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration is part of the unified command for the Deepwater Horizon Explosion Response, which also includes the U.S. Coast Guard, BP, the Marine Spill Response Corporation, National Response Corporation, and Louisiana Department of Fish and Wildlife. Check the web pages of these groups and agencies for more information about the oil spill:

  • Unified Command web site, featuring updates on the oil spill and including photos.
  • "The Emergency Response Division (ERD) Role in OR&R" from NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration.
  • "What's the Story on Oil Spills?" is also provided by NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration. It provides a table that can give you an idea of how much 42,000 gallons is (this is the amount of oil leaking from the Deepwater Horizon rig per day. The leak would have to continue for 262 days to match the amount of oil spilled in the Exxon Valdex disaster in 1989).
Need to find more resources about pollution and environmental cleanup efforts? Take a look at our guide.

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