Rally for the Truth

Rally for the Truth
Dean Blanchard, Karen Hopkins & Stephen Baldwin

Saturday, August 21, 2010

For Immediate Release Gulf Conservation Coordinator The American Birding Association

Drew Wheelan For Immediate Release Gulf Conservation Coordinator The American Birding Association It is now Day 123 of BP's mess in the Gulf. Many of you have interacted intimately with this disaster in the field and have seen the oil up close, and its effects on the coastal communities that are bearing the brunt of this catastrophe. Unfortunately, it seems that the media is ready to move on, as are BP clean up crews, believing the government reports that the oil is all gone. NPR reported last week that numbers of beach clean up workers have diminished from 46,000 to 14,000, and if what I am seeing on Grand Isle is an indication, those numbers are going down on a daily basis. This week, and currently, the American Birding Association has identified large amounts of heavy oil that still remains on Grand Terre Island, Elmer's Island, the Timbalier Islands, the Chandeleurs, and even on the eastern tip of Grand Isle itself to name just a few. The vast majority of this oil has never seen a BP shovel or rake, and continues to go un-cleaned. On August 16th, we encountered a large slick of emulsified oil in Coup Abel Pass in Barataria Bay. Though this type of oil is less common these days, it still exists. On August 16th we did not see one boat skimming, nor one beach clean up worker. It is legal to catch and sell shrimp where we found that oil. Just yesterday, 8/19, I found emulsified oil on a beach in Caminada Pass, Louisiana. The fall bird migration, which will bring hundreds-of-thousands of birds to the Gulf region is nearly underway, and if this oil is left to the whims of nature, these birds will face great and unnecessary harm from contamination of their food sources and their habitat. The presence of this oil and BP's woefully inadequate response are irrefutable, and I welcome any opportunity to show anyone this oil in person. Quite simply we are not doing nearly enough to report on the realities of how BP has mishandled the clean up "effort", and this is a major opportunity to report on a major ongoing story. The American Birding Association is committed to staying in the area to report on the effects of this disaster -- are you? Pertinent Links: Aerial view of oil in Terrebonne Bay and Barataria Bay, August 6th http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUVkBPGxAO0 Video of Oil left on Grand Isle's Eastern Tip; Zone 15 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bIkk7MCtOk Photos and description of the condition of Raccoon Island on August 8th http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=197546&id=161186488701&fbid=423496628701&ref=mf Sincerely, Drew Wheelan Gulf Conservation Coordinator American Birding Association

1 comment:

Jerry said...

Active link to Raccoon Island 8-8 is
http://nativeorleanian.com/another-unforgettable-trip-to-raccoon-island-august-8/
or http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=197546&id=161186488701
jerry