Almost 2 million gallons of toxic chemical dispersants were dumped in the Gulf of Mexico during the 2010 BP drilling disaster, to ”clean up“ the oil spill. Yet five years later, it’s clear that the chemicals didn’t get rid of the oil. Instead, they pushed much of it down under the surface, where it has left a toxic legacy that could linger for decades.
The EPA is currently seeking public comments on new oil spill response safeguards. Now is the time to tell the agency that we must have the strongest possible protections from toxic oil dispersants.
With news that the Department of the Interior is considering expanding drilling off our coasts in the Arctic and Atlantic oceans, the question is when—not if—another devastating spill will occur.
It’s outrageous that if another Deepwater disaster happened today, the federal response would look pretty much the same: Allow the oil company to cover its tracks by dumping millions of gallons of chemical dispersants containing secret, toxic ingredients on the spill, then telling the world that the oil has disappeared.
The EPA is finally calling for public comments on updated protections against toxic chemical dispersants, to ensure that companies like BP can’t just dump secret, toxic chemicals on oil spill disasters and call it a day. We need you to take action now.
Earthjustice has been fighting in court since the BP disaster to force the EPA to fulfill requirements mandated by the Clean Water Act for chemical dispersants. But we urgently need widespread public support to move these protections forward.
Toxic dispersants were used in response to the Gulf oil disaster without prior understanding of their effects on the marine ecosystems and human health. Earthjustice went to court to ensure that the next time there’s an oil spill, we’ll know what is in these dispersants and what they might do to our health and the environment before anyone allows them to be used.