Oily gunk found on Louisiana shore surges three years after BP spill
The amount of oil found on Louisiana’s coast has surged this year, three years after BP’s (BP.L) Macondo spill in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, the state’s Coastal Protection & Restoration Authority said.
Some 3.01 million pounds of “oily material” were cleaned up on Louisiana’s coast from March to August this year, up from 119,894 pounds in the same period last year, according to a report on the state Department of Natural Resources website.
BP said its own tally showed 3.1 million pounds of oily debris collected in the first nine months of this year, up from 941,000 pounds a year ago. A spokesman for the authority declined immediate comment.
The state presentation did not say why there was a big increase in the amount collected this year, but a U.S. Coast Guard official said frequent tropical storms can move sands around on beaches to either cover up oily material or expose it.
The state’s presentation said more than 200 miles of Louisiana shoreline still display some degree of oil pollution after the largest offshore crude spill in U.S. history.
“The conventional wisdom would be that the number (of pounds of oily materials collected) should go down, obviously. But if the response effort was insufficient … I think the numbers speak for themselves,” Garret Graves, the chairman of the authority told Reuters late on Thursday.