Today marks the one year anniversary of the tragic BP Oil Disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. The oil well blowout took 11 lives and likely forever changed the rich marine ecosystem of the Gulf. After 87 days and over four million barrels of oil released, the spewing well was finally capped, but not before it killed thousands of birds and other marine life and caused additional hardship for fishermen and coastal communities during an already-struggling economy.
Looking back a year later on the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history, efforts to fully restore the environmental and economic health of the Gulf and its coastal communities continue. As EDF’s Chief Oceans Scientist, Doug Rader, explains in the Austin Statesman, “A full year after the blowout, we are still struggling, as a society, to assess the ecological and human costs from our nation’s worst oil disaster, to understand how to heal – or offset – the worst damage, and to limit future risks associated with America’s offshore energy industries.”