In the 85 days of the leak, the worst oil disaster in history, nearly 184m gallons of crude oil is estimated to have gushed into the Gulf of Mexico, the ninth largest body of water in the world.
The oil that gushed also added to natural oil and gas leaks into Gulf waters. These occur all the time from the sea bed, and the US Department of Energy estimates that there may be 5,000 active \”seeps\” in the northern Gulf alone. One researcher calculated in 2000 that 500,000 barrels of oil – 84m gallons – naturally gets into the Gulf each year, but is never cleaned up.
Oooh, now that is interesting.
So the oil from this \”biggest ecological disaster ever\” is about two times what turns up entirely naturally every year anyway. And we know that the naturally turning up stuff doesn\’t accumulate, doesn\’t cause major environmental problems, is, in fact, cleaned up by entirely natural means. Bacteria eating it, dilution, whatever.
If the man made spill had been 20 x, or 200 x, then we\’d probably be sensible enough to wonder how on earth that could all be cleaned up. But 2 x? Give it a couple of years and it\’ll be gone, no?