In a press conference on the beach of Grand Isle, Louisiana last week, a BP spokesman claimed that the company’s solution to removing oil from marshes will be to set up boom that will capture oil as the tides come in an out.
FDL Seminal diarist Ivan Oleander asked BP’s spokesman about how to remove oil from the marshes around Elmer’s Island, part of Grand Isle BP blocks press from viewing.
"What we’re doing with the marshes is deploying snare and absorbent boom currently. With the tide changes, it works pretty effectively at picking up oil as the tide comes in and out," said BP’s flack.
That sounds nice, except for the reality of how oil hits the marshes. Oil covers the grasses and plants, leaving the plants brown as the water recedes. Pelican nests and rookeries become covered in thick brown oil as the tide comes in. The oil soaks into the soil of the marsh lands and barrier islands, eroding the fragile ecological makeup of the wetlands. Even with a minor spill, oystermen reported oil-covered oysters ten years after the spill because of oil seeping into soil.
Yet BP’s plan to clean up the marshes and wetlands is to set up some boom and let the tide handle it. "It works pretty effectively," BP says.
BP clearly doesn’t begin to know, understand, or care about the realities of the problems created by its oil disaster.