BP Oil Spill: NASA report confirms toxic dispersants DID rain down on Gulf Coast

(Kevin Green)   Remember all the people who claimed the chemicals BP was dumping in the water might actually evaporate into the air and then rain down on the Gulf States, poisoning land, water, and of course, people?

And remember how the government officials said, “No, no, no! That could NEVER happen. Not to worry! … But we’re not going to let scientists look at the data we’ve collected…”

And how people kept turning up with what looked like chemical sickness, even though it was (of course) impossible?

Well guess what, It wasn’t impossible.  A NASA scientist has started releasing some of that hitherto unavailable data.   And it’s not pretty.

The data being released, which was collected by the NASA missions to the Gulf, shows that the toxic compounds released from the BP spill became airborne, and significant quantities were brought onshore by precipitation, thereby exposing coastal populations to chemical poisoning.  This represents something new and unique not observed in previous oil spills.  It helps explain why there were numerous reports by people living along the Gulf Coast that it was raining oil and dispersant during the summer months.

“The data we collected in the atmosphere shows a very high hydrocarbon load and we were able to identify more than 100 compounds in it.  Many of them have health implications.  There were large amounts of them and they have similarities to gasoline. In that regard the modeling I did seems to suggest that there are reasons for concern. There are reasons to do additional research.”

The scientist: Ira Leifer, Ph.D from University of California Santa Barbara. He was The Chief Mission Coordinating Scientist on the NASA remote sensing mission to the BP oil spill in the Gulf Of Mexico, and he’s a ten-year veteran of oil spills (as well as natural methane bubble flows).

What was so different about the BP spill? He laid it out for Jerry Cope at the Huffington Post;

  • Volume of dispersants: Previous spills were small, leading to one-day exposures. The BP exposure lasted months.
  • Seeing it in the rain: “People at California Oil Spill who have done testing on burning have never seen anything like that. But you don’t have 102% humidity in California.”

And the problems are unprecedented as well:

  • Most  cleanup workers were not wearing masks or other protection.
  • We don’t know what their exposure levels were, since no measurements were taken.
  • We don’t know the risks, because for these toxins, no long-term tests have been done.
  • “The big worry is pregnant women and the elderly — at risk populations. In that regard, at-risk populations, the levels seem to suggest there could be really severe concern for the health-related impacts.”
  • If we don’t deal with this wisely, there’s a danger that we’ll see a “mysterious Gulf Coast Health Syndrome appearing five years from now that nobody figures out what it is until 10 years from now with a lot of people getting sick and very ill in the interim.”

Read the whole interview at Huffington Post.


One Response to BP Oil Spill: NASA report confirms toxic dispersants DID rain down on Gulf Coast

  • Oil Spill Eater II There was a non toxic Alternative to clean up the spill that has been successfully tested by BP after 10 months of spill damages. The Coast Guard sent a letter from headquarters stating to the FOSC to take action with OSE II, and the EPA, Lisa Jackson stopped the Coast Guard from allowing BP from implementing OSE II. In fact the EPA stopped the application of OSE II 11 times denying State Senators direct request for use of OSE II from Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama. La Department of environmental requested the use of OSE II as well, EPA’s Sam Coleman denied their request without reason. Governor Jindal tried to get OSE II demonstrated on the Chandelier Islands on May 6, 2010, and the EPA stopped the Governor as well. The EPA in fact stopped the use of OSE II 11 times, without a reason given. Had the EPA allowed Governor Jindal to allow the demonstration of OSE II on May 6, 2010, it is possible a significant portion of the environmental damages, including the shorelines and the seafood industry would have been spared. The toxicty test comparison between OSE II and corexit really cannot be compared since with corexit, the label states it can cause red blood cells to burst, kidney, and liver problems if a chemical suit and respirator are not worn. OSE II in contrast can be used to wash your hands and is non toxic. The BP Deep Horizon spill has proven that corexit only sinks oil and causes the same oil to be addressed a second time when it comes ashore as under water plumes, or tar balls, while OSE II has a substantiated end point of converting oil to CO2 and water. See Coast Guard letter below

    U. S. Department
    of Homeland Security
    United States
    Coast Guard

    Commanding Officer 1 Chelsea Street
    U. S. Coast Guard New London, CT 06320
    Research and Development Center Staff Symbol: Contracting Office
    Phone: (860) 271-2807

    July 10, 2010

    OSEI Corporation
    P.O. Box 515429
    Dallas, TX 75251

    Attn: Steven Pedigo, President/Owner


    We are pleased to inform you that the initial screening of your White Paper submitted under Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) HSCG32-10-R-R00019 has been completed. It has been determined that your White Paper submission has a potential for benefit to the spill response effort.

    Your White Paper has been forwarded to the Deepwater Horizon Response Federal On-Scene Coordinator (FOSC) for further action under its authority. Subject to the constraints and needs of the ongoing oil spill response, you may be contacted by the FOSC or the responsible party.

    We appreciate your interest in supporting the Deepwater Horizon Response effort.

    Contracting Officer /s/
    USCG R&D Center

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