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Officials said the current spill had the potential to be the worst seen in the United States since the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil tanker spill, considered one of the worst man-made environmental disasters.

On April 24, the Coast Guard reported that more than 40,000 gal. of crude oil a day was leaking into the Gulf waters just 50 miles south of the coast of Louisiana.

What else will man do to the Earth?
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What else will we do to the planet?? Good question Sue.

Oiled birds and dead turtles have been washed up on the shore. What a disaster, and this oil will travel, causing all kinds of damage to sea life and their habitat. Frown

The oil is spreading through one of America's richest and most fragile natural habitats. Frown

Nearly three-quarters of all US waterfowl – and all its 110 species of migratory neotropical songbirds – use Louisiana's three million acres of wetlands to rest or nest.

Worse, this is the most vital season for the Gulf's fisheries, which also largely depend on them. Oysters have just started to reproduce, speckled brown trout have started spawning, shrimp have just begun to grow, to name but a few. Nine out of 10 of all the region's marine species rely on wetlands at some point in their life cycle, and these are mainly in Louisiana.
During these very two weeks, 25 million songbirds can cross the Gulf each day, mostly making their first landfall in the wetlands.

And there is an even worse prospect – that the wetlands, 40 per cent of the US total, may perish altogether if the slick gets really big.

The concern now is that grasses that hold the whole system together could be smothered by the oil and die: without them all that would remain is mud, to be washed away within a year. And the wetlands are not just vital for fish and fowl, but provide a vital buffer against storms and hurricanes: if they had been healthier, it is accepted, Katrina would probably have been less damaging.
Last edited by Inda
This is a very terrible disaster.
Humans are constantly destroying the balance of the Earth, with no thought for other living beings.
This tragedy will surely cause severe weather conditions to escalate on this planet.

Let us hope that they can put a stop to this disaster as soon as possible.

3.5 million gallons of oil have spilled so far into the Gulf of Mexico, and there does not seem to be a way of stopping it very soon.

What a disaster.

The oil slick could become the nation's worst environmental disaster in decades, threatening to eclipse even the Exxon Valdez in scope. It imperils hundreds of species of fish, birds and other wildlife along the Gulf Coast, one of the world's richest seafood grounds, teeming with shrimp, oysters and other marine life

Oil clumps seabirds' feathers, leaving them without insulation - and when they preen, they swallow it. Prolonged contact with the skin can cause burns, said Nils Warnock, a spill recovery supervisor with the California Oiled Wildlife Care Network at the University of California. Oil swallowed by animals can cause anemia, hemorrhaging and other problems, said Jay Holcomb, executive director of the International Bird Rescue Research Center in California.


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Last edited by Inda
Originally posted by dear Inda:
3.5 million gallons of oil have spilled so far into the Gulf of Mexico, and there does not seem to be a way of stopping it very soon.

What a disaster.

The oil slick could become the nation's worst environmental disaster..

I hate to agree, so fully!

Timeline: Oil spill in the Gulf
Oil spill threatens world's largest artificial reef

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Last edited by Teo

Right now, scientists say they're seeing the worst effects of the spill in one area of the Louisiana coast, but expressed concern about what they're not seeing and worry that the ecological impact will only worsen.

"Now that the stuff is really sort of coming ashore, it really is living up to its potential. It's certainly breached the sort of outer defense system of Louisiana," James Cowan Jr., a professor at Louisiana State University, told the Post. "It's the very worst-case scenario for things like birds and mammals."

So far, wildlife officials counted 440 birds affected by the spill -- 393 of which are dead and the rest captured alive. Dozens of turtles and dolphins have been found dead and scientists are testing to determine how many died from oil exposure, the Post reported. Oil-slicked jellyfish lay dead or dying on the shore.

Scientists said what they've found so far is a fraction of the number of animals affected.
Thank you everyone for your input and concern.
I can't see how they will ever be able to stop this.,
so far nothing has worked.

"Now that oil has entered the Loop Current, it is likely to reach Florida within six days," Dr Chapron said. "Since Envisat ASAR, ERS-2 and other SAR satellites are systematically planned to acquire data over the area, we will monitor the situation continuously."

ASAR image for 12 May
The scientists warn however that since the Loop Current is a very intense, deep ocean current, its turbulent waters will accelerate the mixing of the oil and water in the coming days.

"This might remove the oil film on the surface and prevent us from tracking it with satellites, but the pollution is likely to affect the coral reef marine ecosystem," Dr Collard said.

Combined efforts using satellite imagery and in-situ measurements of collected water samples will help to assess whether oil is in the deep waters of the ocean.

The Loop Current joins the Gulf Stream — the northern hemisphere’s most important ocean-current system — sparking fears that oil could enter this system and be carried up to the US East Coast.
from may 25th

(Photo: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service)
Sea Turtles
Of the seven remaining species of sea turtles known today, five of those species are in the Gulf. The oil spill area is one of the only foraging grounds for the most endangered species of the bunch, the Kemp’s ridley turtle, which is in its peak nesting season.
One of its two primary migration routes runs south of Mississippi. Loggerhead turtles, also endangered, feed in the warm waters in the Gulf between May and October.
The seven species that can be found today have been around for 120 million years (longer than the dinosaurs) -- and many of these species live up to 80 years.

(Photo: NASA)
Several dolphin species routinely inhabit the northern Gulf, and already 12 bottlenose dolphins have been found dead due to the the oil spill, reports Yahoo! News.
When marine mammals come to the surface to breathe, they may inhale hydrocarbon vapors that can result in lung injuries; oil that comes in contact with the animals’ sensitive mucous membranes and eyes may produce irritations.
Young cetaceans may be injured due to ingestion of oil from contaminated teats when nursing; and there may be long-term chronic effects as a result of migration through oil-contaminated waters.

this is one of the times I'm thoroughly embarrassed to be a human, totally! Especially how little importance this is getting in news and overall state-of-the-world. (I'm so sorry turtlys! Fishies and birdies, I'm so sorry.. Roll Eyes Roll Eyes ) This will likely create the worse weather conditions ever, be a floating death to ocean after ocean, industry after industry, and that is if it is stopped NOW! When will it be stopped? Any guesses? Will Earth's plates smash into each other without the oil lubricating it's innards? Will the oceans simply die and with them our oxygen? I'd better shut up, this distresses me too much! Mad
Many Gulf Coast residents don't believe it. Some accuse BP of making it up. And even those convinced that the oil leak has finally been stopped are tempered in their relief, aware that their environmental nightmare is far from over. Gulf Coast residents have suffered from months of false starts and dashed hopes, failed "top kills" and abortive "junk shots," containment domes and "top hats," as they watched the biggest offshore oil spill in U.S. history foul their shores and eat into their livelihoods.

hundreds of oiled pelicans and terns have turned up in Louisiana's largest seabird nesting area are a sad reminder of the extensive damage already caused by the spill. Gulf residents, businesses, wildlife, and ecosystems will take a long time to recover from this tragedy, and they need our support in the process of rebuilding.

Last edited by Inda
Even though the oil has been stopped, health threats from the Gulf oil disaster could persist for years.
This toxicity will have disasterous effects on people and all the marine life. What we see on the ocean surface is nothing. Scientists have discovered massive bubbles of undersea oil, some 80 km distant from the oil well, in high concentration capable of killing marine life and causing genetic malformations for years.

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