Another Reminder that Offshore Drilling is Dirty and Dangerous

Fire is burning on a gas rig in the Gulf of Mexico, 55 miles off the Louisiana coast, in the same general area as the infamous Deepwater Horizon disaster.

44 workers have been evacuated from the platform. The rig is in the Gulf of Mexico which is where the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded in 2010, leaking millions of gallons of oil and burned for 87 days. On Wednesday morning the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) said the fire was damaging the rig structure.

“As the rig fire continues, the beams supporting the derrick and rig floor have folded and have collapsed over the rig structure,” the agency said in a statement.

Oceana deputy Vice President for U.S. Campaigns Jacqueline Savitz issued the following statement:

“This is yet another reminder that offshore drilling remains dirty and dangerous. Despite what the oil companies and our government claim, offshore drilling is still far from being safe. What is even more worrisome is that these types of accidents happen more frequently than most people know.

Oil and gas companies continue to rely on so called ‘safety measures’ that don’t work. They did not prevent the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster, or this blowout and fire. After the Gulf oil spill, BP and others were quickly allowed to go back to business-as-usual using the same risky methods. More blowouts, fires and spills will continue until we replace offshore drilling with clean, renewable energy sources such as offshore wind and solar.

Unfortunately, our government seems instead to be preparing to increase our dependence on offshore drilling. The current proposal to use seismic airguns to look for oil and gas deposits off the East Coast is the first step to drilling and spilling in the Atlantic.

Coastal economies, which depend on healthy oceans, simply cannot afford more offshore drilling disasters. And we absolutely cannot afford to bring this risk to the East Coast.

Article appearing courtesy Celsias.

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