If you are like me, you are feeling completely depressed and hopeless about the situation in the Gulf of Mexico. And new pictures like this are just heartbreaking.
The yellow oil containment booms being easily overtopped by slime are starting to look more like police Crime Scene Tape to me. There was a crime committed against the USA and our Planet. Big Oil and 20 years of Conservative deregulation were responsible.
What can we do?
I have been doing some research, and this seems like a start.
By July the Obama administration needs to make a decision about whether it will allow Shell Oil to begin installing oil rigs off America's Arctic coast.
Reacting to the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, 15 environmental groups have asked the U.S. Interior Department to reconsider an exploratory drilling schedule set to begin in less than 60 days off the northern coast of Alaska.
"This could be stopped by the stroke of a pen of the Secretary of Interior Salazar or President Obama," says David Dixon of the Alaska Wilderness League.
Voice of America
Cleaning up an oil spill in the relatively calm waters of the Gulf of Mexico has been an extreme challenge. In the Arctic Ocean, where temperatures fall well below zero, ocean swells can reach 20 feet and huge ice flows prevent travel to most areas, it's inconceivable to expect cleaning up to go smoothly.
A coalition of environmental groups bought this ad today.
It will run on a bunch of national shows.
Is there a chance that we can create at least one bit of good news out of an otherwise horrific situation?
If you are feeling the need to take action, calling the White House about stepping in fully in the Gulf, and preventing any more of these disasters in the Arctic would be a very productive way to deal with grief today.
More action items.
- Fix up that bike in your garage for trips under two miles, like getting a quart of milk.
- Join your local transit advocacy group today so you can become an activist for moving our economy beyond oil dependence. Here is a great national group to follow and get connected to the transit movement. http://t4america.org/ Here's a great group about walking and biking advocacy with many local connections. http://www.peoplepoweredmovement.org...
- Support the groups who took out this ad so they can run it more broadly.
- Take online action.
- Double click the ad, and get the embed code. Post to the sites you are connected to, I know this is a very wired community.
- Support Alaskan environmental groups. They are horribly outnumbered, and they are true heroes for what they do.
I'll flesh this diary out as the day goes on.
Getting on my bike now headed to work.
What Else Can Be Done from Across the Nation Today?
Please add your suggestions as comments, I'll bring them into the diary.
UPDATE: Here's an amazing analysis of how deregulation got us into this mess.
Oil disaster brought to you by deregulation: Bob Marshall
By Bob Marshall, The Times-Picayune
...I'm talking about the fervor for deregulation, the movement to eliminate federal laws that protect people and the environment.
That has been a battle cry for conservative politics for three decades. It was Ronald Reagan who famously made "get government off the backs of business," a winning strategy. And it was George W. Bush who pushed to rewrite the rule books for energy development on public property, rolling back protections for fish, wildlife, air and water under the banner of streamlining the nation's race for energy. That movement sought to turn 40 years of bipartisan environmental protection on its head, and it did.
Industry lobbyists and officials were appointed to key environmental positions with orders to make the environment safe for business -- especially the energy business. Agencies became boosters for development, not protectors of the public trust.
Louisiana's delegations, and most of its voters, cheered almost every step.
For our political leaders to act shocked that something like this could happen requires equal portions of gall and amnesia.
Also, don't miss the UK's Ecologist (the best mag in the biz)