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#41 sevnson_71

 

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Posted 14 June 2010 - 09:36 AM

Should Oiled Birds Be Cleaned?

http://m.npr.org/ima...rakC6YbQQfxVnJI

AP

An oiled white ibis lands on an island in Barataria Bay off the coast of Louisiana last week.

Published: June 14, 2010
by Nell Greenfieldboyce

Brian Sharp, an ornithologist who has a private consulting firm in Oregon, says that on the news lately, he has heard wildlife experts in Louisiana talk about their efforts to clean up wild birds that have gotten covered in oil.

"And they're saying, 'Yes, we can save these birds,' and, 'Yeah, we can take care of them,' " Sharp says.

But he seriously doubts it.

Sharp says he believes many of the cleaned birds will simply not survive after being released back to the wild. That's because in the wake of the Exxon Valdez accident, he looked at several species of seabirds affected by oil to see how long they lived after being washed and banded with ID tags.

Based on tags that were later found, Sharp says the majority of rehabilitated birds didn't last long after being released -- just days, or weeks.

"When they're released, they're still incapacitated," he says. "They're still sick."

The birds hadn't been just covered in oil -- they'd ingested it as they tried to preen. Sharp says he does understand how agonizing it is to see the suffering of oiled birds, and he thinks that if people want to try to clean them, that's their choice.

"Just so that they don't deceive themselves and the public that they're really having great, grand results and saving lots and lots, a high proportion of the birds," Sharp says. "Because it's just the opposite."

Other scientists have come to a similar conclusion. One biologist in Germany recently has been widely quoted as saying that oiled birds should be left alone or euthanized.

Rehabilitation

That bothers Michael Fry, a toxicologist who works at the American Bird Conservancy. Some research doesn't support such a grim view, he says.

"The success at rehabilitation goes all over the map, from like 3 percent of the birds that are brought in, to over 90 percent of the birds that are brought in," Fry says.

Many factors can influence the outcome of a rehabilitation effort, Fry says -- everything from the type of oil to the species of bird.

"Loons and grebes, for instance, are very delicate birds when it comes to oil spills," he says. "Gulls are tough birds. Penguins are very tough birds."

He notes that studies of African penguins cleaned after oil spills show that most survive and go on to breed.

Plus, Fry says, studies done years ago may not reflect the success rates that rescuers could have today because modern rehabilitation techniques cause birds less stress, and birds are carefully monitored to make sure they are ready to be released.

"The responders are getting much better at assessing the health of the birds," Fry says.

Little Data

But some scientists say it's not clear how much difference that makes for the birds' survival.

"They are getting better care in captivity," says Dan Anderson, a biologist at the University of California, Davis, who has studied the effect of oil on birds.

Still, he says, "I'd like to see a report, you know, with statistics and everything on how well these newer techniques are working."

About 20 years ago, he and Fry collaborated on a study that used radio tracking to follow brown pelicans in California that had gotten caught in oil spills, and then cleaned up and released.

"There was one bird that made it for 19 years," Anderson says. "But most of the birds didn't even make it through the first six months."

And the survivors didn't seem to breed, at least during two years of tracking. Anderson says he thinks scientists should try to find out if brown pelicans in this latest spill fare any better.

"The question is still under debate, and legitimately so," he says. "Some follow-up work on this oil spill needs to be done."

Workers who clean oiled birds also want to see more research on how the animals do once they are released.

Mark Russell, a project manager with the International Bird Rescue Research Center, says that the Gulf spill seems like "a golden opportunity to find more information out."

But Russell says that in the absence of clear answers, the birds' suffering still demands action.

"Until we know, we have a moral obligation to stay the course and care for these animals," he says, "and we owe it to each individual animal."

Sometimes, Russell says, euthanasia may be the right choice if it looks like there's no chance a bird could return to the wild. But if recovery seems possible, he thinks a bird should get that chance. [Copyright 2010 National Public Radio]
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#42 JulesLuvsShinzon

 

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 04:07 AM

What concerns me about this whole business is the way in which Obama seems to be determined to use this environmental disaster to make self-serving political points. The fact that Americans are constantly referring to "BP" as "BRITISH Petroleum" suggests that this whole tragedy has played straight into an already extant culture of blame. It seems just a little too convenient to emphasise that the company responsible for the pollution is not American, whereas BP is in fact a multi-national company and "BP" ceased to stand for "British Petroleum" years ago to reflect that standing. It wasn't so long ago that Union Carbide - an American company - caused pollution and untold misery to thousands of people in Bhopal, India, ad those people received virtually none of the compensation that Obama is demanding that BP pay to American citizens for their loss of livelihood. I would also suggest that now is not the time for Obama to make such a case for moral indignation about BP's apparent inability to clean up Louisiana shores, when America failed to clean up properly after Hurricane katrina and left thousands of Americans ( a lot of them black and already poor) homeless in New Orleans and the surrounding area. That time of course, they couldn't blame a third party for the destruction, but if America hasn't got a rescue infrastructure, or contingencies to clean up its own shores in full knowledge that their was deep drilling taking place just off them, why would they expect anyone else? It's not like oil drillng is an alien industry to America! To be honest, had it have been an American company who dumped a load of oil on British shores, I don't believe for one minute that the clean-up would have happened any faster, or indeed that our government would have had a struggle to even get the company concerned to accept responsibility, let alone manage to ensure that our citizens were compensated.

I can't help but think that had Obama been less ready to point the finger, proper co-operation between American agencies and BP could have got this under control with far greater effiency. As it is, BP are constantly on the defensive and spending money on TV ads just to apologise, while Amerian commentators complain that about th way in which BP have communiated with the American public in the "wrong" way.

I wasn't going to allow myself to get drawn into this discussion, but after hearing on yesterday's evening news that Obama is now comparing this environmental disaster to 9/11, I feel I have to protest. In no way is this like 9/11, which, as we all know was he result of simmering resentment on the part of Islamic fundamentalists against America and the result of deliberate act designed to cause as much human misery and destruction as possible. Obama drawing a parallel between the BP and Al Quaeda is extremely offensive to Britons. I don't think Obama can even justify this assertion on the grounds that he thinks it will profoundly affect Americans and change the way in which they think. 9/11 only changed American foreign policy for the worse, and if he really thinks that he can use this convenient environmental disaster to force through environmental policies that were floundering or deeply unattractive to the American mindset, then I think he's a wee bit deluded. Although I find it odd to be agreeing with Shlomi, I have to say he's nailed the problem regarding oil-dependency.

I do think that generally Obama is an intelligent man who will be good for America in the long run, but his performance here has been less than sparkling.

#43 sevnson_71

 

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Posted 15 June 2010 - 10:04 PM

What concerns me about this whole business is the way in which Obama seems to be determined to use this environmental disaster to make self-serving political points. The fact that Americans are constantly referring to "BP" as "BRITISH Petroleum" suggests that this whole tragedy has played straight into an already extant culture of blame. It seems just a little too convenient to emphasise that the company responsible for the pollution is not American, whereas BP is in fact a multi-national company and "BP" ceased to stand for "British Petroleum" years ago to reflect that standing. It wasn't so long ago that Union Carbide - an American company - caused pollution and untold misery to thousands of people in Bhopal, India, ad those people received virtually none of the compensation that Obama is demanding that BP pay to American citizens for their loss of livelihood. I would also suggest that now is not the time for Obama to make such a case for moral indignation about BP's apparent inability to clean up Louisiana shores, when America failed to clean up properly after Hurricane katrina and left thousands of Americans ( a lot of them black and already poor) homeless in New Orleans and the surrounding area. That time of course, they couldn't blame a third party for the destruction, but if America hasn't got a rescue infrastructure, or contingencies to clean up its own shores in full knowledge that their was deep drilling taking place just off them, why would they expect anyone else? It's not like oil drillng is an alien industry to America! To be honest, had it have been an American company who dumped a load of oil on British shores, I don't believe for one minute that the clean-up would have happened any faster, or indeed that our government would have had a struggle to even get the company concerned to accept responsibility, let alone manage to ensure that our citizens were compensated.

I can't help but think that had Obama been less ready to point the finger, proper co-operation between American agencies and BP could have got this under control with far greater effiency. As it is, BP are constantly on the defensive and spending money on TV ads just to apologise, while Amerian commentators complain that about th way in which BP have communiated with the American public in the "wrong" way.

I wasn't going to allow myself to get drawn into this discussion, but after hearing on yesterday's evening news that Obama is now comparing this environmental disaster to 9/11, I feel I have to protest. In no way is this like 9/11, which, as we all know was he result of simmering resentment on the part of Islamic fundamentalists against America and the result of deliberate act designed to cause as much human misery and destruction as possible. Obama drawing a parallel between the BP and Al Quaeda is extremely offensive to Britons. I don't think Obama can even justify this assertion on the grounds that he thinks it will profoundly affect Americans and change the way in which they think. 9/11 only changed American foreign policy for the worse, and if he really thinks that he can use this convenient environmental disaster to force through environmental policies that were floundering or deeply unattractive to the American mindset, then I think he's a wee bit deluded. Although I find it odd to be agreeing with Shlomi, I have to say he's nailed the problem regarding oil-dependency.

I do think that generally Obama is an intelligent man who will be good for America in the long run, but his performance here has been less than sparkling.

You'd rather they be referred to as Belgian Petroleum? :P British Petroleum, like it or not is their company name. We aren't blaming the British as a whole, just BP as a corporate entity and their subcontractors, one of which was Halliburton who installed the faulty blowout valve that caused it. But remember, the platform was owned and operated by BP and they hold the mineral contract to do so. Personally I would have no objection to them filing a civil suit against them to recoup losses and would be utterly shocked if they didn't.

If you want to think back our gov was every bit as hard on Exxon after their good Captain decided to pilot a supertanker whilst quite inebriated into the Alaskan shoreline. That spill was miniscule by contrast. Also I don't think Obama was so much calling BP terrorists as comparing the long term scope of the disaster to the region to 9/11. There are entire industries in that region that will just basically cease functioning for a very long time in an area that is not the most economically or industrially diverse to begin with. Figure how it would impact your hometown if by something done by an American company somehow diverted the hot springs. There would be hell to pay. Now compound that impactover several thousand miles of shoreline built around tourism and seafood. Like say if there was a similar spill extending from Blackpool down to Cornwall. In the middle of the summer season. It'd be an economic and environmental disaster for them as it is for our country.

In my town when someone wants to develop a property they are required to post a bond to cover costs associated with restoring the property in the event of a problem halting the project. I suspect the end result of this will be our government agencies requiring something similar from anyone leasing and pulling resources from Federal property.
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#44 JulesLuvsShinzon

 

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Posted 16 June 2010 - 08:50 AM

You'd rather they be referred to as Belgian Petroleum? :P British Petroleum, like it or not is their company name.


That's my point: it isn't their company name and hasn't been for more than a decade because it is a multinational company. BP no longer refers to British Petroleum, in the same way that BT no longer refers to British Telecom. Obama putting the British back into BP is quite simply a political expedient in order to focus blame.

We aren't blaming the British as a whole, just BP as a corporate entity and their subcontractors, one of which was Halliburton who installed the faulty blowout valve that caused it. But remember, the platform was owned and operated by BP and they hold the mineral contract to do so. Personally I would have no objection to them filing a civil suit against them to recoup losses and would be utterly shocked if they didn't.


If you're referring to BP suing to recoup losses from Halliburton then I am sure they will do that - in time. However, there's something to be said about American negligence in failing to carry out their own checks of a mineral contractor's apparatus given its proximity to their shores.

If you want to think back our gov was every bit as phlox Exxon after their good Captain decided to pilot a supertanker whilst quite inebriated into the Alaskan shoreline.


And rightly so, although this is not a parallel situation because Exxon was an American company fouling American shores. Embarrassing for sure, but this is not the first time an American company has been found negligent, which is why Obama's finger pointing at Britain is a tad hypocritical. If America had a 100% safe operations record in its own locale and in other countries, Obama might have had a point. As it is, this looks like a convenient way to blame a third party for a lot of failures closer to home. All the time nobody can clean this mess up it serves Obama to be the one demanding money to pay for the clean-up that isn't really happening. Where are the American oil drilling experts in all this? As I've said before this is a disaster too big to be about blaming, or leaving it all to BP. The mess is not just BP and their contractors' error, it is increasingly Obama's.

That spill was miniscule by contrast. Also I don't think Obama was so much calling BP terrorists as comparing the long term scope of the disaster to the region to 9/11. There are entire industries in that region that will just basically cease functioning for a very long time in an area that is not the most economically or industrially diverse to begin with. Figure how it would impact your hometown if by something done by an American company somehow diverted the hot springs. There would be hell to pay. Now compound that impactover several thousand miles of shoreline built around tourism and seafood. Like say if there was a similar spill extending from Blackpool down to Cornwall. In the middle of the summer season. It'd be an economic and environmental disaster for them as it is for our country.


I don't think you can draw comparisons between which spill or environmental disaster in order to define which is worse than another. Damage to the environment no matter how large and area it affects is a disaster and lives will be ruined. If the same thing happened here I doubt if the subject would even feature on the American news.

As I've said before, if a disaster caused by an American company happened here on a similar scale, I have no doubt that our government would have trouble even getting the company to admit liability, let alone provide a clean-up operation or compensation.


In my town when someone wants to develop a property they are required to post a bond to cover costs associated with restoring the property in the event of a problem halting the project. I suspect the end result of this will be our government agencies requiring something similar from anyone leasing and pulling resources from Federal property.


I think this goes back to my point about who is really culpable. I think lessons will have been learned on both sides. :)

Edited by JulesLuvsShinzon, 16 June 2010 - 08:52 AM.


#45 ensign edwards

 

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Posted 16 June 2010 - 09:02 AM

What she said. Environmentalists can say "we need to get off oil now" but that doesn't change the fact that oil is the easiest fuel we can get our hands on right now because our entire infrastructure is based upon it. It's going to take time, and/or a great deal more industry-threatening events such as this until the change becomes substantially underway.


You and poko are right, but you shouldn't be, if that makes any sense. I know it's unrealistic to expect our entire society to change overnight, but it shouldn't be. We shouldn't be so intransigent (and I'm not just pointing the finger at other people here; it's not like I'm going to do anything radical). We are poisoning the planet. The decision to change shouldn't be a difficult one, and the fact that it is just shows how screwed up humanity really is. Kinda makes you wonder if there's any hope for us at all.

#46 JulesLuvsShinzon

 

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Posted 16 June 2010 - 10:23 AM

Yes, but it's not just motor cars that use oil. So much of our infra-structure depends upon the petro-chemical industry. Personally, I'd love to see and end to our dependence on fossil fuels - especially oil - because it would make the Gulf States so much less powerful, as well as being of benefit to the environment.

Vegans get this wrong all the time. They assume that meat prduction causes damage to the environment, but forget that large areas of the Rain Forest are felled every day to clear ground in which to grow the soya derivatives they eat as meat and dairy substitutes. They wear plastic shoes because its kinder to animals and guess where they come from?

Making environmentally friendly choices is never that simple because there are so many "hidden" negative effects on the environment. Even recycling certain materials can take more energy than it does to manufacture that material in the first place.

However, while you're saying we "shouldn't" be doing this and that - how many miles a week do you do by car which could be travelled on public transport, bicycle, or on foot? I'll readily admit to using transport when I should be walking because there is a time factor involved. I also despise having to smell other people's farts and B.O. on packed trains and busses, or having to listen to half a conversation being conducted on a mobile phone. Busses never run when I want them to and they are never frequent enough. They are also expensive and having already forked out annually for my road tax and insurance, it's often cheaper to buy the petrol to travel than it is to endure a slow, smelly, and loud journey on a bus.

Even if I chose to drive a Toyota Prius rather than the powerful BMW I drive today, the Prius would be stuffed full of plastic components, all of which are derived from petro-chemicals and have a huge battery that is difficult to dispose of an environmentally friendly way.

My family recently took part in the 21st Century Living Project run jointly by the Eden Project and a major DIY retailer. The project ran for around 18 months and looked at the attitudes of 100 specially selected, typical British families towards environmental issues and the steps they were prepared to take to "go greener". As an incentive each family was given £500.00 to spend on products that would help the family to go greener. We were also given gifts of green household projects to try out gratis. Periodically we were interviewed and experts came to do such things as take an infra-red photograph of where heat was escaping from our houses. We also completed detailed questionaires at the beginning and end of the poject, and at the end we were all invited to attend a party at the Eden Project in Cornwall and to view the results of the survey. It was discovered that this project produced results of such importance that it might well be something that could be looked at in term sof changing attitudes globally. The research is being hailed as one of the most significant studies into public attitudes towards global warming ever done.

What the survey discovered was very significant in that almost every single household had not just spent the £500.00 on sensible measures to conserve energy, they matched (and in many cases exceeded) the amount given to them with their own money. For example, having already had double glazing, wall and loft insulation, we spent the £500.00 on an 'A' Rated energy efficient cooker and refridgerator to replace aging white goods that were energy inefficient even though both items together cost far more than £500.00. We then purchased an energy efficient replacment dishwasher - spending in total £1,000.00.

The purchases made by the families were almost without exception ways to save money on energy expenditure in the home by using less energy in the first place. It was important that this project didn't look at the "converted" - the smug "green" types who were already leading very eco-friendly lives - but at what might persuade the vast majority of people who might be willing to do something, or do more, to protect the environment through their actions at home. The fact that financial incentives seemed to be the trigger is something every government can take forward, and that governent subsidies for such things as installing solar panels (something we plan to do in the future) and initiatives like households being able to sell energy created in the home by such devices back to the grid, could well have a much greater impact than first thought. This survey showed that it was the carrot, rather than the stick, that seemed to work rather better in changing behaviours. To this end, fast, efficient, and above all - cheap - public transport is the way to encourage people out of their cars, not higher road taxes or making towns a nightmare to drive around. More people would install solar panels if they felt that at least part of the outlay was a "gift" there were prepared to match with their own money, something they were getting directly from the government rather than income tax going the other way! There are signs that our govenment is beginning to think the same way and is scrapping charges to households for the amount they send to landfill in favour of giving vouchers as rewards for how much they receycle instead.

Above all, E E pure ideology doesn't shift attitudes - money does. You might think that this is somewhat depressing, but a little prudent channelling of funds is what will eventually cause individuals to change. :)

Edited by JulesLuvsShinzon, 16 June 2010 - 10:37 AM.


#47 Shlomi of Vulcan

 

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Posted 16 June 2010 - 02:21 PM

While BP is a British-based company, in every respect, particularly since its merger with AMOCO (American-Standard Oil) in 1998 and ARCO (Atlantic Richfield Co.) and Burmah Castol in 2000, it is more of a global conglomerate with the majority of its stockholders being citizens of the United States. Therefore, I must agree that perhaps it is time to stop the "British Petroleum" bashing and just realize that when it comes to this kind of horrific disaster, it is time to focus on fixing the problem, cleaning up the mess (if that will even be possible) and ensuring that this kind of thing will never happen again. There will be plenty of time to lay blame and collect compensation, however, it in all honesty, every citizen on this planet that uses any kind of petroleum product, from plastic bags and bottles to fuel and energy, is to blame. As long as there is a demand for this kind of crude, there will always be a entrepreneur ready to meet it and profit from it (not that I have any kind of problem from profit making - but never at the expense of safety when so much is at stake).
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#48 sevnson_71

 

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Posted 16 June 2010 - 02:28 PM

That's my point: it isn't their company name and hasn't been for more than a decade because it is a multinational company. BP no longer refers to British Petroleum, in the same way that BT no longer refers to British Telecom. Obama putting the British back into BP is quite simply a political expedient in order to focus blame.

Now c'mon, that is like saying just because Kentucky Fried Chicken changed their name to KFC their food won't still clog your arteries :P Whatever you want to call it, be it effluent or a more rustic term s*** still stinks when it is stuck to your shoe.

If you're referring to BP suing to recoup losses from Halliburton then I am sure they will do that - in time. However, there's something to be said about American negligence in failing to carry out their own checks of a mineral contractor's apparatus given its proximity to their shores.

Oh and they have been called to task on that. They have been cleaning house in the offending agency and continue to do so.

And rightly so, although this is not a parallel situation because Exxon was an American company fouling American shores. Embarrassing for sure, but this is not the first time an American company has been found negligent, which is why Obama's finger pointing at Britain is a tad hypocritical. If America had a 100% safe operations record in its own locale and in other countries, Obama might have had a point. As it is, this looks like a convenient way to blame a third party for a lot of failures closer to home. All the time nobody can clean this mess up it serves Obama to be the one demanding money to pay for the clean-up that isn't really happening. Where are the American oil drilling experts in all this? As I've said before this is a disaster too big to be about blaming, or leaving it all to BP. The mess is not just BP and their contractors' error, it is increasingly Obama's.

My point is it doesn't matter where the company HQ is based out of, and it isn't personal. It is business. Obama is asking BP for the money not Parliament, not your PM, the Crown, or the British public. Like it or not a contract is a contract. Also the Navy, USCG and several Federal agencies have been in the Gulf right along. They have an Admiral coordinating it. So it isn't as "hands off" as you have been led to believe. Also BP has been turning away volunteers in favor of their own people to assist with the cleanup.

I don't think you can draw comparisons between which spill or environmental disaster in order to define which is worse than another. Damage to the environment no matter how large and area it affects is a disaster and lives will be ruined. If the same thing happened here I doubt if the subject would even feature on the American news.

As I've said before, if a disaster caused by an American company happened here on a similar scale, I have no doubt that our government would have trouble even getting the company to admit liability, let alone provide a clean-up operation or compensation.




I think this goes back to my point about who is really culpable. I think lessons will have been learned on both sides. :)

Of course all environmental damage is bad. Had it been Exxon-Mobil, Phillips-Conoco, or any other hyphenate American oil conglomerate it would stick to them just as badly, at least here. The US government likes to write very ironclad contracts especially when it comes to processing our resources. This has become exponentially more strict since the inception of our EPA, which is charged as the enforcing body when such a catastrophe occurs, but also as an impartial investigator in finding out how and why it happened to prevent the same thing happening again.
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#49 JulesLuvsShinzon

 

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 09:24 AM

Now c'mon, that is like saying just because Kentucky Fried Chicken changed their name to KFC their food won't still clog your arteries :P Whatever you want to call it, be it effluent or a more rustic term s*** still stinks when it is stuck to your shoe.


In your eagerness to answer me I think you must have just skipped over Shlomi's post! BP is a multinational concern now, so Obama's and theAmerican media's constant overuse "British" is both inaccurate and needlessly inflammatory.

My point is it doesn't matter where the company HQ is based out of, and it isn't personal. It is business. Obama is asking BP for the money not Parliament, not your PM, the Crown, or the British public.


Well that's a good job because I don't think Obama would get very far with that! Frankly, we see American big business as being far more prone to environmental accidents.

Like it or not a contract is a contract. Also the Navy, USCG and several Federal agencies have been in the Gulf right along. They have an Admiral coordinating it. So it isn't as "hands off" as you have been led to believe. Also BP has been turning away volunteers in favor of their own people to assist with the cleanup.


And excatly what expertise in the field do these volunteers have? Or would they just get in the way? Of course BP will want to used their own people in the clean-up operation since nobody is disputing that they are responsible, but then again, the American experts aren't and agencies making a whole lot of difference to this mess either.

Of course all environmental damage is bad. Had it been Exxon-Mobil, Phillips-Conoco, or any other hyphenate American oil conglomerate it would stick to them just as badly, at least here. The US government likes to write very ironclad contracts especially when it comes to processing our resources. This has become exponentially more strict since the inception of our EPA, which is charged as the enforcing body when such a catastrophe occurs, but also as an impartial investigator in finding out how and why it happened to prevent the same thing happening again.


Like I said: lessons to be learned. :)

#50 Barbara

 

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Posted 17 June 2010 - 02:30 PM

I'm not going to get into this as a political discussion, but I will say that now that I've been down to the coast, it's worse than you can even imagine. TV doesn't do it justice. There are volunteers everywhere set up in small mobile units, working non stop. Taxis are taking animals to various locations to clean them up - possibly saving them. All the birds are tagged in order to keep track of where they were located. Lots of dead animals. Lots of dead fish. It really does stink - horribly. There's much more, but I'll stop here. I'll get my "marching orders" soon.

I was in New York a week after 9/11. It was horrible beyond words.

Comparing the two disasters is just plain off base. Anyway, there's more to the story than meets the eye. Being there is overwhelming.
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#51 JulesLuvsShinzon

 

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 03:48 AM

I'm not going to get into this as a political discussion, but I will say that now that I've been down to the coast, it's worse than you can even imagine. TV doesn't do it justice. There are volunteers everywhere set up in small mobile units, working non stop. Taxis are taking animals to various locations to clean them up - possibly saving them. All the birds are tagged in order to keep track of where they were located. Lots of dead animals. Lots of dead fish. It really does stink - horribly. There's much more, but I'll stop here. I'll get my "marching orders" soon.


Indeed I can imagine what it's like and I'm really certain that the TV pictures don't do it justice. In fact, I suspect that the TV pictures we've been shown over here have been carefully selected to make the environmental impact look a whole lot less than it is, which is surprising because viewers have seen far worse depictions when oil tankers have sunk off our own shores.

I was in New York a week after 9/11. It was horrible beyond words.


Now my imagination falters...

Comparing the two disasters is just plain off base.


I'm glad we can agree that was not a smart move on the part of Obama.

Anyway, there's more to the story than meets the eye. Being there is overwhelming.


Why is the public - perhaps on both sides of the Atlantic - being shown the whole truth?

Edited by JulesLuvsShinzon, 18 June 2010 - 03:50 AM.


#52 sevnson_71

 

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 03:07 PM

While BP is a British-based company, in every respect, particularly since its merger with AMOCO (American-Standard Oil) in 1998 and ARCO (Atlantic Richfield Co.) and Burmah Castol in 2000, it is more of a global conglomerate with the majority of its stockholders being citizens of the United States. Therefore, I must agree that perhaps it is time to stop the "British Petroleum" bashing and just realize that when it comes to this kind of horrific disaster, it is time to focus on fixing the problem, cleaning up the mess (if that will even be possible) and ensuring that this kind of thing will never happen again. There will be plenty of time to lay blame and collect compensation, however, it in all honesty, every citizen on this planet that uses any kind of petroleum product, from plastic bags and bottles to fuel and energy, is to blame. As long as there is a demand for this kind of crude, there will always be a entrepreneur ready to meet it and profit from it (not that I have any kind of problem from profit making - but never at the expense of safety when so much is at stake).



In your eagerness to answer me I think you must have just skipped over Shlomi's post! BP is a multinational concern now, so Obama's and theAmerican media's constant overuse "British" is both inaccurate and needlessly inflammatory.

It's an unfortunate thing I admit, but it is their fault for retaining the BP name post merger. Though at the time the name was admittedly not as stigmatized then. I do feel bad that you and other Britons are feeling slighted because of corporate branding though.

Well that's a good job because I don't think Obama would get very far with that! Frankly, we see American big business as being far more prone to environmental accidents.

Not as much as you would think. One of the claimed reasons ironically for the mass exodus in manufacturing from our shores is partly to do with our environmental regulations driving up the costs of making goods here. China conversely has entire towns made into recycling facilities for discarded Western electronics, leaching every heavy metal known to man into their drinking supply with impunity. I have even heard of cases where they had their own versions of the Chicago River fires as we did before our EPA existed.


And excatly what expertise in the field do these volunteers have? Or would they just get in the way? Of course BP will want to used their own people in the clean-up operation since nobody is disputing that they are responsible, but then again, the American experts aren't and agencies making a whole lot of difference to this mess either.



Like I said: lessons to be learned. :)

Well the US Navy and USCG both have been learning oil containment protocols at the very latest since Pearl Harbor was attacked. You see not all the fuel oil burned off. To this day the USS Arizona is leaching fuel into the harbor, as are a few other vessels still beneath the waves that weren't salvaged. As to the civilian volunteers Barb can answer to that better than I but I am certain the knowledge base varies.


Indeed I can imagine what it's like and I'm really certain that the TV pictures don't do it justice. In fact, I suspect that the TV pictures we've been shown over here have been carefully selected to make the environmental impact look a whole lot less than it is, which is surprising because viewers have seen far worse depictions when oil tankers have sunk off our own shores.



Now my imagination falters...



I'm glad we can agree that was not a smart move on the part of Obama.



Why is the public - perhaps on both sides of the Atlantic - being shown the whole truth?

If the public saw the whole truth the outrage would likely be overkill. Remember BP can only make good on their $20B commitment if they are still making money.
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#53 ensign edwards

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 08:55 AM

However, while you're saying we "shouldn't" be doing this and that - how many miles a week do you do by car which could be travelled on public transport, bicycle, or on foot?


A rough estimate of zero. I don't own a car, and I usually just walk. On the occasions I have to go farther, I take public transit. But I grant that this isn't an option for everyone.

The purchases made by the families were almost without exception ways to save money on energy expenditure in the home by using less energy in the first place. It was important that this project didn't look at the "converted" - the smug "green" types who were already leading very eco-friendly lives - but at what might persuade the vast majority of people who might be willing to do something, or do more, to protect the environment through their actions at home. The fact that financial incentives seemed to be the trigger is something every government can take forward, and that governent subsidies for such things as installing solar panels (something we plan to do in the future) and initiatives like households being able to sell energy created in the home by such devices back to the grid, could well have a much greater impact than first thought. This survey showed that it was the carrot, rather than the stick, that seemed to work rather better in changing behaviours. To this end, fast, efficient, and above all - cheap - public transport is the way to encourage people out of their cars, not higher road taxes or making towns a nightmare to drive around. More people would install solar panels if they felt that at least part of the outlay was a "gift" there were prepared to match with their own money, something they were getting directly from the government rather than income tax going the other way! There are signs that our govenment is beginning to think the same way and is scrapping charges to households for the amount they send to landfill in favour of giving vouchers as rewards for how much they receycle instead.


I've been letting my idealism run wild here, but thinking practically, this is probably the only way we're going to achieve major change. I wish my government would adapt some ideas like this, but our prime minister cares nothing for the environment (or anything else that isn't himself, for that matter).

Above all, E E pure ideology doesn't shift attitudes - money does. You might think that this is somewhat depressing, but a little prudent channelling of funds is what will eventually cause individuals to change. public/style_emoticons/default/smile.gif


I don't find it depressing. I don't care why people change; I just want them to change.

Now, when the desire for money leads to harm to the planet, that's when I get upset.

#54 poko

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 09:09 AM

I heard in France they subsidize new car purchases. The more energy efficient, the cheaper the car. The less energy efficient the more expensive the car. The more expensive inefficient cars are marked up high enough to pay for the subsidy on the cleaner cars even with their more frequent purchase.

I like this plan as it doesn't punish anyone for what they did in the past but does reward them in the future for good choices. We could wait a year or two to put it into full effect in order to let the car manufacturers to begin to adjust their production focus as well.

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#55 ensign edwards

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 09:43 AM

That's a smart notion.

#56 poko

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 10:51 AM

If the public saw the whole truth the outrage would likely be overkill. Remember BP can only make good on their $20B commitment if they are still making money.

Thats only 2 quarters of profits for BP. Not revenue or income but their fully earned profit for half a year is about $12-$18B after paying all their standard bills and maintenance. Their quarterly revenue is closer to $80B. I think they will survive.

And for those defending BP's safety record vs other oil companies. Realize that it has one of the worst (if not the worst) safety record of any oil company here in the US. They collect violations like bottle caps. BP has six refineries in the US and in a three year period they collected 760 "egregiously willful" safety violations between them. The other 56 refineries in the US? They received a gross total of one "egregiously willful" violation in the same period. BP's 6 refineries accounted for 54% of all safety violations.

Oh and it was BP in charge of the botched early Exxon Valdez containment. So stop trying to paint BP as just a standard company that operates within the flawed rules of he US. They're flagrant violators of regulations.

Edited by poko, 19 June 2010 - 10:56 AM.

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#57 sevnson_71

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 11:31 AM

I heard in France they subsidize new car purchases. The more energy efficient, the cheaper the car. The less energy efficient the more expensive the car. The more expensive inefficient cars are marked up high enough to pay for the subsidy on the cleaner cars even with their more frequent purchase.

I like this plan as it doesn't punish anyone for what they did in the past but does reward them in the future for good choices. We could wait a year or two to put it into full effect in order to let the car manufacturers to begin to adjust their production focus as well.

Thing is the reason as standard policy they can do that is because France subsidizes their industries heavily. We did a little of that with cash for clunkers(along with spending quite a bit on the compound they used to permakill the drivetrains to insure they weren't just parted out). I know someone who traded in a half dead Jeep Cherokee on a Hyundai Accent that way so he could get the full $4500 to make the purchase within his budget.
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#58 poko

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 01:15 PM

Thing is the reason as standard policy they can do that is because France subsidizes their industries heavily. We did a little of that with cash for clunkers(along with spending quite a bit on the compound they used to permakill the drivetrains to insure they weren't just parted out). I know someone who traded in a half dead Jeep Cherokee on a Hyundai Accent that way so he could get the full $4500 to make the purchase within his budget.

We subsidize the oil industry more than any other country so your argument about France is silly. We subsidize like crazy. There is a reason we use high-fructose corn syrup, not sugar and our beef is so cheap and its not because our dirt only grows corn.

25,000 barrels a day.

Edited by poko, 19 June 2010 - 01:15 PM.

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#59 poko

 

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 07:16 PM

Here is another link that provides a visual representation of the coverage of the spill and also information on how you can help (scroll down)


http://www.ifitwasmyhome.com/

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#60 Barbara

 

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Posted 21 June 2010 - 12:27 PM

That's a great link. At the very end is a series of photographs from the Boston Globe. The brown pelicans are really getting hit the worst. Some have ingested so much oil that there is no hope for them. It's the saddest thing to see. If it doesn't bring tears to your eyes, nothing will. So much damage. It's really overwhelming. Never thought my hazmat training would be of any use. It seemed like a waste of time and energy ..... now? I'm so glad I have that training.


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