One month after the Gulf oil spill disaster began, 14 major environmental groups joined together on a letter asking President Obama to ban offshore drilling in places off U.S. coasts that are not currently being drilled. One month after the BP Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, the well is continuing to gush thousands of barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico. The groups called on the President to reverse his previously announced policy of expanding drilling off Florida, the Atlantic coast and Alaska and instead ban drilling in these places. The President has the authority to ban drilling in new areas through a Presidential withdrawal.
Defenders of Wildlife
Posts By: Defenders of Wildlife
On the 30-day anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion that has led to what may be one of the worst environmental disasters this country has ever seen, Defenders of Wildlife takes a look at 20 ways the oil industry and our federal government have failed to keep us safe from the dangers that offshore oil and gas drilling poses to wildlife and coastal habitats. We also recommend 10 ways that Congress and the administration can make changes that could help prevent future oil catastrophes and mitigate the impacts of the current crisis.
The waters of the Gulf of Mexico and Florida’s Atlantic coast are home to five species of sea turtles: green, hawksbill, leatherback, loggerhead and Kemp’s ridley. All are listed as endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The oil gushing from BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig poses several additional threats to the already precarious existence of these rare creatures.
Florida is on pins and needles waiting to see whether oil will enter the Loop Current and make its way down the east side of the Gulf, around the Keys and along the Atlantic Coast. Much of Tuesday morning was spent getting briefings on the status of the oil and on impacts to fish and wildlife. On one call, we heard from Jane Lubchenco, administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. She and her experts reported that a tendril of oil was headed down towards the Loop Current, which would take it to the Florida Straits. On a later call, representatives from the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) , NOAA Fisheries and National Park Service discussed existing and potential impacts to fish and wildlife.
A daily news roundup of articles pertaining to the state of affairs and the impacts of wildlife in the Gulf.