BP's tarballs coat Elmer's Island, LA -a non-amenity beachGRN and our partners in the environmental community have pointed out BP's offshore sheen time and again for over a year. It's ridiculous that yesterday's announcements from government and BP continue to lack a good answer as to where the oil is coming from, and why it continues to show up.
Oil in the water harms whales, bluefin tuna, and many other species, and it's unacceptable that two years later, BP hasn't been able to secure their disaster site.
Beyond the offshore sheen, GRN has documented BP's oil continuing to plague our marsh and our barrier islands, especially in the wake of Hurricane Isaac. Just before the storm, the Coast Guard seemed to be willing to let BP off the hook. BP has continued to claim that they've cleaned up their mess, and no new oil is showing up - especially on 'amenity beaches' a term of art designed to keep the discussion away from Louisiana's coast.
To add insult to injury, BP has only actually spent 7% of their promised $1 billion for early restoration. While talk of a 'global settlement' has sent politicos spinning, and doing everything possible to position their state for the biggest payout, it's far more important we keep our eyes on the Gulf, and do all we can to make sure BP is held accountable for every element of this tragic story.
Aaron Viles is GRN's Deputy Director. You can follow him on twitter here.