BP Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Demonstrates That Oil is Dirty, Dangerous, and Deadly

Press Release April 27, 2010

Washington, D.C.On the same day oil giant BP reported that its quarterly profit jumped an astounding 135 percent to some $5.6 billion, a massive oil spill from a BP well continues unabated in the Gulf of Mexico, drawing nearer to crucial fishing areas, sensitive coastal wetlands, and beaches.  

Statement of Athan Manuel, Director of Sierra Club Lands Protection Program

“Our hearts go out to the families of those still missing after last week’s drilling rig disaster.  This terrible tragedy is a sad reminder that oil is dirty, dangerous, and deadly.  Instead of risking our lives, our coasts, our clean air, and our security by perpetuating our addiction to oil, it’s time to build a clean energy economy that means more jobs, less pollution, and real energy independence.  More offshore oil drilling has no place in a clean energy future.”

  • DIRTY: Oil continues to pour from the leaking well–a well drilled using the most advanced technology available–at a rate of 42,000 gallons a day.  It could be weeks before the well, located in some 5,000 feet of water, is capped.  Meanwhile, the ever-growing spill now covers more than 1,800 square miles of ocean–an area larger than the state of Rhode Island.  The massive spill threats environmentally-sensitive and economically-important coastal areas of Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida.
  • DANGEROUS: The Huffington Post reports today that Big Oil, including BP and Deepwater Horizon operator TransOcean, “aggressively opposed new safety regulations proposed last year by a federal agency that oversees offshore drilling — which were prompted by a study that found many accidents in the industry.”
  • DEADLY: Eleven workers from the Deepwater Horizon remain missing after last week’s explosion. In 2005, an explosion at BP’s Texas City Refinery killed 15 workers.  In response to safety violations at that facility, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration levied a record fine of $87 million against BP, which BP promptly challenged in court.