The U.S. Department of Justice has filed a civil lawsuit against BP for damages resulting from the Deepwater Horizon explosion in April, 2010 that resulted in nearly five million barrels of oil spilling into the Gulf of Mexico. The lawsuit also covers associated companies such as Anadarko and Transocean. The NASA video below shows the oil spill from space in the months after the explosion, as oil spread across Gulf of Mexico waters.
The suit cites damage to the Gulf’s natural resources, wildlife and their associated human activities, all of which have economic value. The oil spill into the Gulf of Mexico has already affected those who live in the region – for example, shrimpers, who had 4,200 square miles of Gulf waters closed to their boats last month after tar balls were found in their nets.
The Deepwater Horizon explosion occurred on April 20, 2010. The well was not capped until July 15. Time will tell what results will come from the U.S. government’s suit against BP. Meanwhile, effects from the oil spill in the Gulf are expected to last for years.
Nancy Rabalais on long-term impact on wildlife of Gulf oil spill
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and founded EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.