Vince Herman: The Gulf Oil Spill
The Deep Water Horizons leak of what likely will be millions of gallons of oil from the oceans floor will effect our lives for generations. As I write; the television news is speaking to the owner of a seafood warehouse who is just about out of inventory, due to a rush of folks stocking up on locally harvested seafood. This may become a thing of the past.
For Gulf coast fisherman the ten day closure currently in effect, may be the beginning of closed fisheries for the rest of their lives. That is the immensity of what playing risky with energy exploration has brought to our southern border.
Haliburton published a paper describing the danger of curing cement heating the seabed and releasing gases making explosions a possibility. BP and their contractors on this project knew of this risk. Our government didn't require the safety valves used in European BP operations because here they were deemed too expensive by a regulatory agency a bit too cozy with those who profit from extracting our countries natural resources.
So here I am. Another musician spouting off some liberal diatribe my profession gives me no right to talk about. I guess if thats how you see it, I've been guilty of this since being a union rally musician in the 80's. I've shared my opinion on Mountain Top Removal, the abandonment of New Orleans before and after Katrina, development, immigration, brutal grooming, my local town board and many topics over the years. Yes i have talked about politics.
This ain't politics.
This is a different planet for my kids. This is the end of Atlantic Bluefin tuna, shrimp boats, oyster beds and the beginning of a much bleaker Gulf coast. This spill joins the gulfstream and the east coast joins this dance with an energy policy long on profit and short on protections. The oceans are one big circulatory system for this planet. The idea that this will have only a small local effect ignores the web of life we balance on. The oceans provide a lot of protein for the exploding population of our planet. This is nothing to take lightly folks.
They may begin burning the oil on the surface tomorrow. Research I've done says this will leave a toffee like goo behind that will sink and contaminate the seabed for years. Nobody knows what to do right now. The folks who decided to take the risk of this uncertain technology were not ready to fix their big mistake. This is as inexcusable as the the culture of profit that I hold responsible for the death of the miners at the Upper Big Branch mine. It may have happened because we don't demand our interests be protected by our elected officials and those appointed by them to insure these disasters don't happen. I for one may just engage a bit more in these issues.
Once again though, this aint politics. This is an undeniable change in the lives of many in our great country and possibly around the world. These are days we will speak of for generations. Don't follow the impulse to hide your head in the sand folks. Continue to love all the time we have here and celebrate the ride we have on this fair planet. Feel the love, then call your senator...