Five years later, the BP oil spill of 2010 remains a serious environmental concern. Who could forget the heart-wrenching images of what appeared to be the ocean on fire or the thousands of pictures of marine life sledging through oil, or dead on the beach? It’s hard to forget an accident that caused 210 million gallons of oil to be leaked into the Gulf of Mexico oil to be leaked into the Gulf of Mexico over about 90 days before it was finally sealed.
The environment certainly can’t forget the damage that was done. BP’s reputation will likely never recover from their epic failure response and delay in remediating the spill. In an attempt to aid the recovery of the Gulf, BP recently released a new report on the current situation in the Gulf, Gulf of Mexico: Environmental Recovery and Restoration. While the document provides a lot of positive information about the recovery of the Gulf, some experts are suggesting that it is missing some of the key elements and issues that remain of serious concern. The presence of dead zones remains one of these issues.
The oil spill caused significant oxygen deprivation that can be seen in the death of multiple species of marine life. The Gulf of Mexico’s coral community, in particular, has suffered tremendously. Years after the oil spill, coral skeletons continue to retain evidence of damage. BP attempted to refute their fault in the coral’s damage by stating that it could be the result of other sources of oil, like natural oil seeps. Conveniently this problem became evident only AFTER that BP oil spill.
Oil is still showing up on the beaches. The BP reports only an area of 1 mile as being heavily soiled. However, other studies report significantly higher statistics of tar balls, and oil residue showing up on the beaches. Many experts indicate that these residues may show up on beaches for years to come in the future, posing a threat to all of the organisms on or around those areas.
We’re five years down the road, and the BP oil spill of 2010 remains a serious environmental concern. In fact, many scientists suggest that we don’t fully even understand the grave impact the spill has made on the Gulf of Mexico. The water surrounding the well continues to demonstrate dangerously high levels of methane which causes very serious implications for the marine life in that area. As time progresses, and more research is conducted, we will begin to see the full effects of the BP oil spill of 2010 on the Gulf of Mexico.