The World Socialist Web Site writes:
With each passing day, the scale of the disaster unleashed by the oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico increases. Somewhere between 5,000 (the official estimate) and 25,000 (the estimate of some scientists) barrels of oil is surging into the Gulf every day.
Before it is over, millions, if not tens of millions of gallons of oil will be washed up on America’s wetlands and shorelines.Eleven workers are already dead in the latest industrial disaster in the American energy industry. Now, the fishing and seafood industry along the Gulf coast may be shut down for years, perhaps even a generation. The destruction of the fragile ecosystems of the region will likely be irreparable.
The disaster implicates one of the world’s largest corporations, British Petroleum, together with partners and subcontractors like Transocean Ltd., operator of the drill rig, and Halliburton, which carried out major operations on the wellhead only a week before the explosion.
None of the giant corporations that created this disaster has any solution. When it first began the deep-water drilling project 15 months ago, BP gave assurances that “it is unlikely that an accidental oil spill release would occur from the proposed activities.” Even in the event of a spill, the company claimed that “due to the distance to shore (48 miles) and the response capabilities that would be implemented, no significant adverse impacts are expected.”
The assurances given since the explosion have been no more believable. BP and its partners claimed at first that the rig was stable and the well capped without leakage. After the rig sank and the pipeline ruptured, BP said there was only incidental spillage of oil. Even after admitting the existence of the leak, the company has sought to downplay the spill, and estimates have risen repeatedly. In one worst-case scenario, the outpouring of oil could surge as high as 100,000 barrels per day.
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