2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill
Due to the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig located in the Gulf of Mexico near Venice, Louisiana, oil began spewing from the offshore well on the April 20, 2010. BP’s inability to quickly cap the well has resulted in massive damage to area waters and the coastline. Even though a cap has been installed and appears to be working, the repercussions of the spill and its clean-up will have ongoing effects on the area and its residents. For in-depth, current information, check out the websites below.
BP’s Gulf of Mexico Response is a website dedicated to conveying the latest company news to citizens. The site includes hotlines and phone numbers for claims, volunteers, wildlife distress, and innovative ideas to help.
The University of South Florida Libraries established The Gulf Oil Spill Information Center (GOSIC), a compiled guide to resources and information regarding the spill. The website is arranged by subject and provides information about BP, current issues, regional news, and oil spills in general, as well as maps, video clips, and news releases. Some information included on the site is considered “grey literature” (conference papers, reports, and data) which can take a long time to become formally published and reach the public.
The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is providing current information on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and is updating their page as information becomes available. The organization is testing water conditions of unaffected areas in order to project a baseline. It includes links to geospatial imagery, the impact on wildlife, reports from sampling sites, maps, and congressional information.
NOAA’s Library and Information Services Division has released a bibliography, Resources on Oil Spills, Response, and Restoration: A Selected Bibliography, compiling information about the spill. Interested persons can find a massive variety of electronic sources and websites, videos, journal articles, and other print resources related to both the Gulf oil spill and the effects of oil spills in general.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working with local and state health departments to monitor health effects that may be caused by the spill. The CDC is monitoring worker safety and compiling samples to test the quality of air, water, and soil. The website also includes fact sheets for hazardous materials such as crude and fuel oils, and many other links relating to public health concerns.
Be sure to check out the Monroe County Library System for more information about oil spills and other environmental disasters:
After the Spill: The Exxon Valdez Disaster, Then and Now
By Sandra Markle
Examines the impact of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill on the environment and people of Prince William Sound and describes the steps taken to minimize the damage and prevent a recurrence.
Crude [DVD]: The Real Price of Oil
Released in 2009 by First-Run Features
An in-depth look at one of the most controversial lawsuits in history, between U.S. oil company Chevron and over 30,000 people living in the Ecuadorian rainforests that are trying to fight this giant from contaminating their lands. Bonus features include commentary by the director, interviews with director Joe Berlinger and actress Trudie Styler, and bonus scenes.
Disaster at Parsons Point
By Susan Saunders
An oil spill threatens the life of sea animals and the fishing industry on the Atlantic coast.
By Michael Woods and Mary B. Woods
Describes environmental disasters, including oil spills, chemical leaks, toxic pollution, and nuclear accidents, and discusses how they impact people, wildlife, and the environment.
Healing Our Coasts, Protecting Our Future: 15 Years of Protection and Restoration of the Nation’s Coastal Resources
Published by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Examines environmental aspects of oil spills, how to prevent them, damage assessment, remediation, and restoration programs.
Also available as an online government document
By Gloria Rand
On Prince William Sound in Alaska, Denny rescues a baby seal hurt by an oil spill and watches it recover at a nearby animal hospital.
Sludge and Slime: Oil Spills in our World
By August Greeley
Explores what oil is and how it is used, the harm that is done when it is spilled into the ocean, and what can be done in the future to prevent such disasters as the 1989 wreck of the Exxon Valdez.
Story of a Seagull and the Cat Who Taught Her to Fly
By Luis Sepulveda
A seagull, dying from the effects of an oil spill, entrusts her egg to Zorba the cat, who promises to care for it until her chick hatches, then teach the chick to fly.
Washing the Willow Tree Loon
By Jacqueline Briggs Martin
A loon is rescued from an oil spill, cleaned, and cared for before being returned to the wild. Includes information on cleaning birds.