Oi. It's hard to play catch-up after a holiday, but in the interest of my mental health I choose to take full advantage of my time off and not worry about a thing, so forgive me if I've missed a few details in the posts that follow. Anyway, here we go.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predicts that the likelihood for oil to reach the Eastern coast of the United States is still small, using models based on historical wind and ocean current information. The Florida Keys, however, may not be so lucky. NOAA predicts a 61 - 80% chance that oil will reach the shores of the Keys, Miami and Ft. Lauderdale. Meanwhile in Texas, tar balls are being found on beaches on the Bolivar Peninsula and at Galveston Island.
Hurricane Alex has been hindering cleanup efforts, but several skimmers have been able to return to the area since Friday, although success results have been deemed inconclusive due to remaining foul weather.
BP is currently working with wildlife protection groups addressing a lawsuit alleging that sea turtles were being burned alive in controlled burn areas due to their inability to escape the slicks. A US Navy "airship" (read: blimp) is being sent out to the site to help monitor wildlife in the contaminated area and to track slick movement from air. This is actually pretty cool, despite how lame blimps are, because it can stay in the air for 12 hours - much longer than planes and helicopters.
BP's total cost spent on the response has officially surpasses $3 billion...and everyone's talking about how that's a big deal, but honestly I still think that's nothing compared to what it's going to cost the families and states affected - not to mention the toll on wildlife losses. This figure doesn't include the $20 billion fund set up for personal loss claims by citizens in the areas, however. But I don't know, I still thought it would have been more than that by now. BP has also begun to relax their control over what the media sees and does not see. Perhaps we'll be seeing more from the Southern shores? ...Or perhaps they're confident in their cover-up efforts.
Full articles here (NY Times)
NY Times is doing a day-by-day report; this is the most recent (day 76).