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Brand BP Bloody Pathetic for creating what could be the worst ecological disaster of the 21st century. Also, one which could, dramatically, impact the world’s chemistry for years to come.
Nearly two months after the Deep Horizon oil platform blast killed 11 workers — shedding light on how shoddily the U.K.’s largest corporation managed its drilling of the deepest oil well in history — more than half-a-million gallons of crude oil sludge continue to snake, daily, onto the shorelines of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and, now, Florida, regurgitating oil mayonnaise onto their once pristine, tourist-happy sands.
Considering the extent of the catastrophe — it has far surpassed the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, which leaked more than 11 million gallons of oil — BP and the White House are missing in action, leaving it up to ordinary, industrious Americans to tackle the nightmare slime with fishnets, and even their bare hands.
Textbook examples of corporate incompetence abound, still BP has become the leader with its nonchalance and ineptitude. The worst part is the lack of aforethought and oversight by greedy BP execs. Their rush to be the slickest oil men had them tampering with the ocean’s bowels more than six miles below the sea line.
There is something disturbing about the human presumption to drill below the ocean floor, where a rugged and varied topography boasts huge mountain chains, stretching for thousands of miles with only the highest peaks peeking above the surface as islands. Then, there are the ocean deeps, great gashes reaching depths of more than 30,000 feet. All of this, BP royally ignored, or dissed.
Clearly without a conscience, or a confident plan of action, or any slick brains on staff, BP must put aside its hubris and pride, and tap the United States’ best resource — the public at large. Some of it could teach BP engineers a thing or two, such as 21-year-old Long Island engineering prodigy Alia Sabur who, last week, cornered the outfit’s operations director for eastern Louisiana in the Pelican State with her idea to stem the leak with a pipe ringed by deflated tires — and then inflate them to form a seal.
Sounds better than anything BP has surfaced with, if indeed the leak hasn’t outgrown the pipe, and can be contained at this point.
President Obama’s clog dance hasn’t helped either. Except for baying sporadically, the Oval Office hasn’t understood that BP is out to lunch, and couldn’t care less about the priority of keeping Americans and their shore safe. The tardiness and indifference of both has fueled the monumental environmental and economic ruin to the whole world.
©2010 Community Newspaper Group
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