The massive environmental disaster in the Gulf of Mexico serves as a grim reminder of how delicate our planet’s ecosystems truly are. The fact that this was a manmade disaster makes it even more serious. In some ways I’m reminded of Chernobyl in the then USSR where the April 26, 1986 meltdown of a nuclear reactor spread radioactivity for hundreds of miles and as many as 100,000 of the clean-up workers died of various types of radiation-generated illnesses in the years after being exposed and more than half a million more have since become invalids.
Natural disaster such as hurricanes, tornados, floods, droughts, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc. are all part of what we Earth inhabitants live with. We can take precautions against them, thereby often minimizing the damages they can cause, but their effects on the environment and ecosystems involved are unavoidable but can rebound, given sufficient time and opportunity. So how long will it take for the damages invoked by the Horizon oil gusher to recover? Probably many years
I’m not sure how many of you have wondered how such an incident as the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster could happen, given all the supposed “failsafe” mechanisms that were in place, Why didn’t the emergency shut-offs kick in, why were the manual shut-off valves so frozen in place that the remote un-manned repair sub was unable to close them? Since that fateful night’s explosion it seems as though BP, owner of the ill-fated rig (and many like it), had no fallback plan to stop the gusher and has since been “playing it by ear” to shut down the huge influx of oil and gas – with little success.