Gulf Oil Spill

What happened in the Gulf of Mexico?

On April 20, 2010, an explosion rocked British Petroleum’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Not only did 11 workers die, it unleashed a deluge of oil that erupted into a river of oil spewing into the ocean. This is one of the worst man-made disasters in history.

Why is cleanup necessary?

Entire species can literally disappear: An oil spill devastates wildlife and the environment. It poisons the food chain, so even animals untouched by oil can die off. It affects reproduction. It eats away at water-resistant and insulating skin/feathers/fur.
Local economies are destroyed. Industries that depend on the ocean, like fishing, no longer function. Tourism to polluted areas evaporates, and real estate values plummet.
The impact is spreading. So much oil has erupted into the Gulf that it’s poisoning the entire Gulf coastal region.
Plus, there’s evidence that the use of the chemical dispersant itself has allowed the oil to enter the food chain (1). The long term effects of this unfortunate side effect are unknown, but – based on previous oil spills like the Exxon Valdez – likely harmful.

What happens if the oil doesn’t get cleaned up?

Oil breaks down on its own eventually. However, it happens very slowly, and oil continues to corrode the environment and wildlife until it does. Decades after the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill, areas along Prince William Sound are still polluted by oil, and previously thriving towns have been broken.

Wasn’t this spill cleaned up already?

No, the media has simply moved on to other topics. It’s easy to forget about disasters – even those of the magnitude of the Gulf Oil Spill – when it’s not in your face, but that doesn’t mean the aftereffects have disappeared. We don’t talk about the Exxon Valdez spill very much anymore, but the devastation lingers – entire communities remain tainted or destroyed, economies collapsed, health issues unresolved. Unless we want to repeat history and let a disaster tear at an important corner of the American community for decades to come, we must continue our efforts to clean up the spill and restore the area to its former state.

Is this the only environmental cause
Gone Green Fundraising supports?

Not at all! It’s simply one of the most pressing. We rotate donations to a full list of other environmental causes, with most of the money going to those that are most urgent. We highlight the Gulf Oil Spill because it remains near the top of that list, and likely will for the foreseeable future. That said, you can specify a particular organization to receive donations from us.