|Quote, originally posted by http://www.ecpulse.com/en/topstory/2010/05/03/gulf-of-mexico-oil-leak-getting-worst/ Â»|
|Gulf of Mexico oil leak worsening, state of emergency declared in several states!!!|
The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico began on April 22 when a British Petroleum (BP) oilrig exploded and sank about 16 miles off the Louisiana coast, killing 11 crew members, rupturing an oil rig, which has been spewing around 200,000 gallons of crude oil into the sea each day, three times more than what was originally estimated.
Now the oil slick spread over 9,000 square kilometers (3,500 square miles), reaching the shores of southern states, thereby Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida declared state of emergency. Now those states are seeking ways to deal with this catastrophe and legal options to deal with damages since some of those regions live mainly on fishing.
Despite the efforts made by the cleanup crews to limit the widespread of the pollution, the oil slick is moving fast so its expected to reach the Pensacola Beach coast by Tuesday or Wednesday. This determined the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to ban recreational and commercial fishing in a 6,817-square-mile area of federal waters from the Mississippi River to Pensacola Bay for at least 10 days.
It seems that there are growing questions about the safety of the seafood from that area. "It's kind of a precautionary move, which we felt was necessary to ensure the public safety and to ensure consumer confidence in the Gulf of Mexico seafood in light of all the issues that are going on nowÃ¢Â€Â, said Roy Crabtree, southeast regional administrator for NOAA Fisheries.
The decision left many fishermen with a gloomy outlook for their businesses, "It's going to collapse our local economy for sure," said a licensed fisherman. Thereby, in an attempt to measure the extent of the damage of what might become one of worst ecological disasters in the US history, President Barack Obama who deployed the Navy to help limit the extend of the disaster, made a visit to the site of the spill off the Louisiana Coast.
Ã¢Â€ÂœItÃ¢Â€Â™s a massive and potentially unprecedented environmental disaster. Let me be clear: BP is responsible for this leak, so BP will be paying the bill. The government will do whatever it takes for as long as it takes to stop this crisisÃ¢Â€Â, Obama said. But BP is defending it self by saying its Ã¢Â€Âœa failed piece of equipmentÃ¢Â€Â that should be blamed for this disaster which might turn out to be even greater than the 1989 spill when Exxon Valdez in Alaska sent 258,000 barrels into the sea.
Meanwhile, the spill is threatening to destroy not only wildlife and tourism in the region, but also the abundant fishing industry. But BP highlighted the difficulty to shut off the well a mile beneath the sea saying that in the Ã¢Â€Âœbest-case scenario, it will take a week to shut off the oil leakÃ¢Â€Â. However, even if the leak will be stopped in one week, the question is, how long will it take for the gulf to recover, months or maybe years!?