BP Oil Spill Crisis
The Deepwater Horizon was a nine year old, ultra-deepwater, dynamically positioned, semi-submersible, offshore drilling rig built in South Korea. In 2008, British Petroleum (BP) leased it from Transocean to drill for oil in the Gulf Coast. In September 2009, the rig drilled the deepest oil well in history at a depth of 35,055-feet. On April 20, 2010 while drilling the rig exploded at 9:45PM (CST), killing eleven workers and injuring seventeen others. It was caused when methane gas from the well shot all the way up and out of the drill column, expanded onto the platform then ignited and exploded. The explosion then led the rig to burn, with the resulting fire unable to be extinguished 2 days later it sinked leaving the well gushing causing the largest oil spill in history (as seen in Fig. A in attachments). Some estimates placed it in late May or early June 2010 as the largest oil spill in history. Flow Rate Technical Group estimated the flowing of barrels of crude oil per day at 35,000 to 60,000. The oil now covers at least 2,500 square miles in the Gulf of Mexico, with estimated 73 to 126-million gallons released.
Oil remains the world’s biggest business. Every aspect of our lives depend on the refinement of crude oil for energy, plastics, chemicals, and drugs. Due to the major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, it has become one of the world’s most hazardous concerns. There are many effects of the BP oil spill: wildlife, fishing and shrimp industry, tourism, and health effects. I will discuss why I highly disagree with the main source of energy to be is oil.
The Gulf of Mexico contains some of the most spectacular wildlife in the world include manatee, bottle-nose dolphins, and whooping cranes, just to name a few. In fact, there are more than 400 fish and wildlife species relying on the Gulf Coast for food, cover, and breeding areas. This disaster of the BP oil spill has caused many deaths: 64 mammals, 2,919 birds, and 489 sea turtles according to National Wildlife Federation and these numbers are going to continue to rise year after year till all the oil is cleaned up. Also, the Gulf is home to endangered species. Kemp’s ridley sea turtles are currently listed as endangered, and could go to threatened in the next couple years. Another example is the Bluefin Tuna which is labeled as endangered and could send them to extinction due to the massive oil spill. This is one dire effect that is hurting our ecosystem, and this same instance happened in Alaska with the Exxon Valdez oil spill. A great example of how gruesome the oil has taken on wildlife, look at Fig. B where a there is an oil-soaked pelican. I believe the world should change its main source of oil to a different less destructing fuel.
Another effect from the BP oil spill it’s jeopardizing the Gulf’s billion-dollar fishing and shrimping industry. With the Gulf accounting for 40-percent of North Americans seafood, it is the second largest seafood...