Bleeding Out

May 17, 2010

Unless you’ve been in an underground vacuum chamber for the past month, you have no doubt seen/ read/ heard about the “oil spill” in the Gulf Coast. I am not going to regurgitate or dramatize a bunch of already paraphrased information. This “oil spill” is not a little puddle or leak. This, my friends, is an utter environmental catastrophe. Plain and simple.

The numbers are all over the charts– from conservative estimates provided by invested parties, to the ominous figures scientists and environmental groups are purporting– but even the lowest guesses are absolutely STAGGERING. BP, the company with the most financial investment (not to mention responsibility) in the disaster has estimated approximately 5,000 BARRELS A DAY, GUSHING into the ocean. Scientists and engineers are estimating the actual volume to be 10 times that.

To put it in perspective, well-educated individuals across the globe are estimating the scope of this “oil spill” to be the equivalent of the late 80’s Exxon Valdez catastrophe EVERY FOUR DAYS.

Multiply that by the fact that this pipeline has been GUSHING for nearly a month now, with no foreseeable conclusion.

The way I am seeing this, and I could be totally off base, is that the world, much like the human body, has a number of systems. In the earth, there is oil. Crude oil is essentially a waste product– thousands of years of mineral breakdown. The oceans are the veins that pump our planet’s blood. Full of life and driven by currents, they keep water, the blood of all existence, in constant global circulation. The ocean and the oil reservoirs are naturally separated, and with good reason.

What happens to a person when their kidneys, or appendix, rupture?

Am I way out of the ballpark in my analogy? Perhaps. Science isn’t necessarily my area of expertise, and I have never made that claim. But when I watch the video footage of this pipeline pumping oil into our ocean– a home for millions of species; the source of all life– I feel something inside me ache for the planet. I feel her groan. And I know that I am not alone. A lot of us are feeling it. Call it mana, call it the force, call it whatever you will; the connection between all living things has been disturbed. The global energy is at an unrest.

We are watching our Earth mother bleed out on TV.

Relevant reading materials:

Just How Much Oil is Spilling into the Gulf of Mexico?
Worry That Oil Spreading into Major Ocean Current
Coral Reefs Tainted by Oil Spill
The Daily Show– Who’s To Blame [video]

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4 Responses to “Bleeding Out”

  1. Jen Says:

    Right on Kat! Thought for awhile I was crazy being so grief-stricken by this catastrophe so it is reassuring to know others are just as upset. It’s that feeling of helplessness/being out of control that is behind my angst-b/c, as we discussed earlier, what can we REALLY do to help? And shouldn’t BP just clean it all up asap on their own? Obviously we can’t count on BP or gov’t to do this correctly, so here we are, upset, helpless, watching a life force more powerful than we know die. In the long term, the best we can do is eliminate this dependence on oil-whether it comes from war-ravaged countries overseas or our own, now devastated, gulf coast. In the short term, riding your bike/walking & eating veggies are the best actions we can take right now.(and, its what our own mama bears told us to do all along!)

  2. Paul Says:

    I may be just blowing smoke here because I know nothing about mining for oil, but I feel a major issue has been ignored through this entire mess. For the last few weeks, BP has come up with a new Wile E Coyote ACME box plan with no success. However, every single plan seems to involve funneling a much oil as possible that they can salvage.

    I wonder if there are possible ways to just drop a bunch of explosives down to completely shut off the pipe but lose the well forever. It seems like this hasn’t been discussed at all, and BP hasn’t considered it. If this was a possibility, BP could have done that and saved this environmental catastrophe if they had just come to terms with the losses they’ll encounter. Either way, they’ll pay the money to all the companies they’ve screwed on the Gulf Coast, so why not just be rid of the problem and move on to the millions of gallons of oil they’re generating elsewhere?

    I just have a gut feeling that destroying the well is what they’ll end up doing, but a few months and an environmental disaster too late.


  3. Jen- you’re right. At this juncture, being the change we want to see is a huge step, as we are an unfortunate species of hypocrisy.
    Paul- YES!! I was just discussing that this past weekend– money should be NO OPTION. Losing the well should be NO QUESTION. These are the most well-financed companies with access to whatever technologies they want. It should, under no circumstance, take a MONTH or MORE to stop this geyser. And that ANY groups have to collect money for aid, and that any individual person feels more obligated than this company to clean up the spill, sickens me. THIS WAS NOT A NATURAL DISASTER.
    I really think that above and beyond just using less gas, donating to relief efforts, etc, we need to rise up and say enough is enough. Where do corporate claims on this planet end? Who really owns our natural resources? Who’s planet IS THIS?? Where are the world’s leaders, putting these men in suits against the wall for their crimes against humanity, and every other species?
    We all feel so powerless. How can it be that MILLIONS, maybe BILLIONS, of people are at an unrest, but only a handful of people’s decisions “matter?”

    “…But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security.” ~Declaration of Independence …just a thought

  4. Paul Says:

    “When the people fear the government there is tyranny, when the government fears the people there is liberty.”
    — Thomas Jefferson

    If only there wasn’t enough people content and comfortable enough with their lives…


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