Posted by: terrauniversity | April 5, 2012

BP Oil Spill

by Ashley Hardin

April 20, 2012 will mark exactly two years that the Deep-water Horizon oil well exploded where 170 gallons of crude oil rushed into the Gulf of Mexico and killed 11 workers that worked on the drilling rig. The oil spill damaged some of the most profound fisheries in the world and the damage still continues.

Even after a year after the spill it has left that part of the country still cleaning up the mess, and has changed some peoples lives forever. The harm on the environment has been very harsh and the restoration of that area has been slim to none. It took 87 days for BP to plug the well, and only about 8% of the oil was burned off the surface of the Gulf of Mexico and oil has also washed up onto 1,053 miles of shoreline. This oil spill also killed nearly 230 bottlenose dolphins and sea turtles that have been washing up on shore even two years after the spill happened. (Dean, 2011).
There is a long list of operational mistakes and equipment failings leading up to the explosion of the BP oil well, which Congress is ignoring. The oil industry is resisting reforms that could potentially make drilling safer and more efficient.

If an oil spill like this one were to ever occur again their needs to be more safety precautions and they must be strengthened. Our main goal would be to keep our workers and our wildlife safe; this means we need adequate funding, training and equipment.

Other than just strengthening our safeguards while dealing with oil wells, but if we as American’s reduce our use of oil it would help out our environment and our pockets tremendously. In this country we use 800 million gallons of oil, which is 26 percent of the worlds daily output of oil. (Dean, 2011). This goal can be achieved! If we invest in sustainable resources we can all live better lives.

For educators: Discuss how we can live more sustainable lives and reduce our dependency on oil, and what steps we can take to live a “greener” lifestyle.

The BP Oil Spill Disaster: A one-year assessment and recommendations for restoration and reform. Bob Dean. 2011 Extracted from:

Material Safety Data Sheet, Version 5.

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