The Beacon: admin's blog

Factsheet: Options for Dealing with an Oil Spill

For more, see the PDF version of this factsheet.

There is no truly effective way of cleaning up an oil spill. All the options available are not fully effective or have negative impacts.

Burning the Slick

Unfortunately, burning the oil is a no-win situation; it creates large, toxic plumes of smoke that can result in respiratory problems and eye, nose, throat and skin irritations in both wildlife and humans. Birds may also become disoriented in the smoke.

Burning may be the lesser of two evils as it removes large amounts of oil that can result in immediate and long-term impacts to wildlife in the area, including skin irritations, organ damage, reproductive failures, developmental abnormalities and death.


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Factsheet: The Gulf Spill’s Effect on Fisheries

To read more, click here for the PDF factsheet.

The federal government has closed commercial and recreational fishing in a wide swath of the Gulf as a result of the oil spill, which is a serious economic blow to the region.


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Factsheet: Recent Major U.S. Oil Spills


 Date

Location

Spill (gallons)

Substance


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Factsheet: Recent Major International Oil Spills

There have been many major oil spills around the world in recent years. For the pdf of this factsheet, click here.

 Date

Location

Spill (gallons)

Substance


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Factsheet: Exxon Valdez and Long-term Recovery after a Spill

To read more, click here for a PDF version.

The Exxon Valdez is to date the worst oil spill to have occurred in US waters. It has been well studied and provided twenty years worth of information on how ecosystems recover from oil spills.


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Factsheet: The Three Myths of Offshore Drilling

For the PDF of this factsheet, click here.

Myth 1: Offshore drilling is safe.

The Deepwater Horizon Drilling Disaster is not an isolated incident and offshore oil drilling is extremely dangerous. Since 2006, the United States Minerals Management Service reports that there have been at least 21 offshore rig blowouts, 513 fires or explosions offshore and 30 fatalities from offshore oil and gas activities in the Gulf of Mexico.

Just last year, a new offshore oil drilling rig off the coast of Australia had a blowout similar to the one on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico. The Australian rig spewed approximately 16,800 gallons of crude oil daily into the Timor Sea for about 75 days.

As we can see with the Deepwater Drilling Disaster, safety measures and so-called “failsafe” mechanisms can fail, and when they do, we do not have the technology to stop ongoing oil releases, nor are we capable of effectively cleaning them up.


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The Scanner: Sights on CITES Edition

bluefin tuna

© Oceana/Keith Ellenbogen

Happy Friday!

As we speak, an Oceana team is headed to the CITES conference in Doha, Qatar, which begins tomorrow. We will be bringing you updates from the conference as we push for trade restrictions for bluefin tuna, corals and sharks.

CITES wasn't the only thing on the ocean radar this week, though. Check out the rest of this week's stories:

…Scientists have found that oxygen-starved pockets of the ocean, known as dead zones, can contribute to climate change. The increased amount of nitrous oxide produced in low-oxygen waters can elevate concentrations in the atmosphere, exacerbating the impacts of global warming and contributing to holes in the ozone layer.

… OK, this one’s a little gross -- but also really cool. Forensic researchers recently dropped several dead pigs into an ocean dead zone off Vancouver Island to gain insight into how fast cadavers in an ocean can disappear thanks to scavengers. Marine researchers took advantage of the study to do their own by using an underwater camera to see what kinds of animals fed on the disintegrating dead pigs -- and how long they could tolerate low-oxygen zones. While crabs, shrimp and starfish normally stay at shallower depths (where there’s more oxygen), the scavengers pushed their limits for the pig pickin’. Who knew swine could be such a boon for ocean science?


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Great video on Oceana

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=2710193731826521107&q=oceana&tot...

This great video about Mercury in Seafood should be watched by anyone who eats seafood or cares about someone who does.

Also, its a test of the Gootube.module, which allows users to just post links to a video and it automatically adds the embed tag.


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Ranger Attack '07

In the early summer of 2007, Oceana's Ranger catamaran was threatened by a fleet of French driftnetters.


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