• Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Proponents of gambling our quality of life and natural assets for affiliating ourselves with the money indigenous to the oil business often point out the new safety procedures and scientific advantages that the industry has employed since the Horizon Spill to safeguard our water quality and environment. They claim we can “have it all” in regards to the benefits of the industry and our natural resources undisturbed.

Those proponents (as well as all of you reading these words) would do good to Google (oil spill Houston Texas) and read the Brownsville Herald article covering the 170,000 gallon spill in Galveston Bay that occurred a few days ago. The article mentions how there are hundreds of small oil spills yearly and that the area has averaged 285 spills a year since 1998.

Our area cannot afford ONE spill.

This 170,000 gallon spill in Texas had the net result of closing all of Galveston Bay indefinitely to oyster harvesting, among other devastating consequences. Most oyster beds in neighboring states were severely mitigated or are still closed due to the Horizon Spill. Now that Galveston Bay is closed, the entire Gulf oyster industry (where 90% of the oysters consumed in America come from) is crippled indefinitely.

Prices for shucked or in shell Gulf oysters were already at record highs. Now the infrastructure that processes and distributes these products may go extinct because there is hardly any product to work with. Not to mention all of the harvesters and industry related workers that are now out of work.

Oil industry proponents will most likely blow this off with “Not to worry. There will be more jobs created to clean up the spill and process insurance claims, lawsuits, etc.”

Outstanding logic. LOL – but it is really difficult to do that at this point.

Rick Baumann

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