In April 2010, the Deepwater Horizon offshore drilling rig located at the Gulf of Mexico exploded, leading to a massive oil spillage. The BP line was found to be leaking oil and gas about 42 miles off the coast of Louisiana, and by the time the situation was addressed, 3.19 million barrels of oil was said to have leaked. Since the first leak, the amount of oil released to the environment and the nature and duration of the oil spill presented a lot of challenges.
The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico led to various positions regarding who is responsible for the spillage. While the federal government held BP responsible for the accident, BP has accepted the blame but denies the allegations that it failed to use the safest modern technology and to maintain continuous surveillance on the rig floor.
The explosion led to the death of 11 workers and resulted in a massive oil spillage that threatened the entire gulf coastline. The oil spill led to adverse effects on the wildlife living in the sea. The accident also caused economic harm to people who depend on the gulf water as the source of livelihood.
Immediately after the explosion and spillage, workers from BP and Transocean, as well as government agencies tried to control the spread of oil using floating beams. The workers then used various tools including skimmers to collect this oil. Sorbents were also used to mob up the oil traces left in the sea. The involved parties also used dispersants to break down the oil into small particles that could easily mix with water. Despite these steps taken to resolve the issue, the Gulf is still not oil-free as removing spilled oil from the environment is a very difficult task.
I feel like the oil spillage in the Gulf of Mexico was as a result of negligence by BP and Transocean. In order to solve the issue, the parties should invest in the latest technology used in removing spilled oil from the environment. BP should also use the safest modern technology while drilling oil in order to prevent such accidents in the future.
Credit: Georgia Department of Natural Resources. The oiled sargassum seaweed in the Gulf of Mexico after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010.