Today, senior campaign director Jackie Savitz and I went on the first boat trip for conservation groups to observe NOAA's attempt to understand the scope of the oil spill and how to respond to it. The crew we shadowed was trying to measure oil underneath the Gulf's surface. Along the way, we saw shrimpers turned oil skimmers, reddish oil on the water and sadly, a pod of dolphins including calves swimming and feeding in the oil-polluted waters.
In this video, Jackie summarizes a lot of what we saw. We'll have much more video and photos from the trip soon, so stay tuned. Thanks to NOAA for allowing us to come along and learn about this critical work.
As evidenced by all the comments and e-mails we’ve been getting the last few weeks, it’s clear that you all want to know how to help respond to the Gulf oil spill. And a big thanks to everyone who has already taken action with us!
Here’s an update on what you can do, whether you are in the Gulf region or not:
What you can do on the ground in the Gulf:
- Register through OilSpillVolunteers.com to volunteer or join a cleanup organization.
- The Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL) is accepting volunteers. Register on their website.
- The Mobile Baykeeper is asking for volunteers. Call 251-433-4229.
- The Audubon Society is looking for help. You can report oiled wildlife at 1-866-557-1401. To report areas with oil ashore or to leave contact information to volunteer in the affected areas, call 1-866-448-5816.
- The BP Volunteer Hotline has set up numbers if you need to report injured wildlife or damage related to the spill. You can also request volunteer information at 866-448-5816.
What you can do from anywhere:
- Become an Oceana Oil Activist and find out about volunteer opportunities in your area.
- Sign the petition: Tell President Obama and Congress to stop new offshore drilling.
- Donate today to help us make sure another catastrophe like this doesn't happen again.
- Follow us on Facebook and Twitter and help spread the word.
- Reduce your consumption of gasoline by driving less: use public transit, ride your bike and walk.
While oil-covered birds have become an emblematic image of catastrophic oil spills, sea birds aren’t the only ones affected. Oil is extremely toxic to all wildlife, and the toxic effects on marine life begins as soon as the oil hits the water.
Here are 10 examples of how marine life may be affected by the Gulf spill in the coming days, weeks and years