The Full Catastrophe
By Miryam Ehrlich Williamson
If the BP oil disaster were in my town, the area covered would reach from a point in the Atlantic Ocean east of Portsmouth, New Hampshire west to Utica, New York; and from Hartford, Connecticut north to Barre, Vermont. This information leaves me breathless.
You can see what the full catastrophe would do to your home turf by clicking here. Type in your location, and the oil will move there.
A friend shared the link with me. Please share it with others,as many as you can, or send them here so perhaps they’ll be inspired to action, too.
On the site you will also find the clearest live video feed I’ve seen — you can actually see robots at work — and a counter that estimates the number of gallons leaked since the rig exploded April 20, 2010. Last I looked, the total was approaching 21,500,000.
I’ve come to the point where outrage is replacing grief. Outrage at our President’s response, which is far more temperate than any emotion I feel. I’m starting to catch Jim Hightower’s mood, want the government to implement Bob Reich’s suggestion.
Someone in the White House reads every e-mail sent to the Office of Public Engagement at <firstname.lastname@example.org>. (EOP stands for the Executive Office of the President.) Each night a small number, I think ten or twelve, are delivered to the residence for Barack Obama to read. I want my letter to take him by the shoulders and say, “Here. Feel this.”
The web site I hope you’ll visit also has a list of suggestions for you.
What Can You Do?
- Learn. Read more about the spill and its ecological and economical impact on the gulf coast. Follow the Deepwater Horizion Joint Investigation which is investigating the cause of the explosion.
- Talk. First, share this map with your friends so they can understand the impact as well. Next, write to your Representatives and Senators and share your feelings about this disaster.
- Think. The EPA is soliciting ideas for possible technology solutions to aid in the oil spill response efforts. Submit your idea. You can also visit the clever inventors over at GulfClean.org and help them build their crowdsourced technology for oil cleanup.
- Volunteer. Lousiana and Florida are both looking for volunteers to help in cleanup and prevention. If you have a boat and live or work on the gulf coast, you can participate in the Vessels of Opportunity program.
- Donate The National Wildlife Foundation and Save Our Seabirds are accepting donations for coastal relief.
I suppose it’s a good thing that BP has managed to saw through a pipe atop the well in an attempt to cap it. I think it means more oil will flow to the surface for a while, which is not a good thing, though. It’s meant to slow the leak, not stop it. Nobody expects an end to this horror before August, if then.
Action is the best antidote to grief. You’ll feel better if you do something.
Posted on June 4th, 2010 by Miryam Ehrlich Williamson
Filed under: Environmental disaster