The fear of not knowing…

"Boy...glad that's over..."

“We all knew we were experiencing health problems, but if you don’t have money and access to health care, it’s a win for BP,” said Carol Farmer, 52, of Milton. “No one knows about us, and BP can brush it under the carpet.”

Not knowing.

The country remains largely unaware of health problems occurring to cleanup workers and others in the Gulf of Mexico and those that are sick, don’t know for sure the extent of their illness…or what they can do about it.

That’s a whole hell of a lot of not knowing, and that makes a whole lot of fear. Hoping to help, the National Institute of Health is doing a long-term study of health problems in the Gulf, especially focussed on the clean-up workers and at a recent workshop in Gulf Breeze, 100 or so people showed up to take part, including Carol Farmer. The goal of the workshops and community meetings is to enroll up to 55,000 of the 150000 cleanup workers. Individuals participating in the health screenings will be told of any health problems and referred to doctors or clinics who can treat them at low or no cost.

The goal of the study is to better determine how to handle oil spills in the future.

That way, hopefully, there will be fewer problems such as:

Eddie Casanova 46, of Fort Walton Beach, said the whole left side of his body has rashes and bumps that came up after he began working the oil spill on Pensacola Beach, Fort Pickens, Johnson Beach and Pensacola Naval Air Station in 2010 and 2011.

Or…

Charles Everhart, 60, was on one of the first cleanup teams to hit the beaches in the summer of 2010 when the air was full of noxious fumes from the oil washing in from the Gulf of Mexico. Since then, he’s been having eye, respiratory and throat problems, “I used to jog three miles a day,” he said. “Now, I can’t run a block without huffing and puffing.”

Or…

Many others in the crowd who worried about immediate health problems…problems they say are being dismissed by doctors or left untreated because they can’t afford medical treatment or don’t have insurance…

Yes, money…again, money…always, money…

Money’s the reason BP won’t entertain too much discussion about health problems as it might open their company up to litigation or liability, and money’s likely the reason why Feinberg, unlike his fund for Agent Orange and 9-11, is demanding proof of causality in order to make a health claim against the GCCF, something very, very difficult to do…

But, not everybody is dealing with so many worries as BP CEO, Bob Dudley reports:

BP added exploration prospects equivalent to an area the size of Italy, an unlikely outcome given the firm’s role in the Deepwater Horizon disaster. ‘One of the surprises is that I thought we would have a more difficult time taking on exploration roles,’ the American said. It’s been the best year in 30 years for increasing exploration acreage for BP’, he added…”

Yessir…

BP and Bob Dudley crow away about how they’re back in business, making big profits, expanding…while many of the people their spill hurt, or made sick are still in the dark waiting…wondering…unable to afford medical treatment or the peace of mind contained in knowing when it will also be their time to finally get their lives back…

You know, just like Bob.

Read the article:

BP oil cleanup workers focus of health study

Have a nice day.

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BP, Batman and the Joker’s natural oil seeps…

So when British Petroleum says...

Okay…so riddle me this Batman:

In August, fresh oil slicks are discovered near the Macondo well site. BP denies they are there. The Coast Guard denies they are there. Bonnie Shumaker, pilot for Wings of Care flies out and takes pictures, proving the oil is there. BP then admits the oil is there as does the Coast Guard, after confirming BP admitted it too, but both say the oil is not from the Macondo reservoir. Then reporters from the Alabama Press Register take a boat out to the slicks, take samples, have it tested and sure enough, it is from the Macondo reservoir.

Hmm…

BP responds to this by sending an ROV down to look at the well-head. They don’t release the video, but they assure everyone still paying attention the well-head isn’t leaking, nope…not at all…it must be residual oil being released from the collapsed pipes and equipment on the seafloor. In response, Transocean sends an ROV down to check the collapsed pipes and equipment and says…nope, no oil leaking from there.

Hmm…

And this month, BP denies they are still checking into this oil. Then a pilot flies over, and confirms several large oil-related vessels operating at the surface above the Macondo well. BP says…oh, those ships, and yes, they then confirm they are conducting a study to track the oil from seabed to surface.

Track what from where?

In an emailed statement late Friday, a representative from BP verified that several vessels are in the vicinity of the Macondo well: “There are several vessels there participating in a study of natural oil seeps. This study has been ongoing for the past month or so. Data continues being collected and we provided an update on the natural oil seeps at the SETAC [Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry] conference in Boston this week. … The study is documenting the specific locations of these seeps and is seeking to track oil flow from seabed to surface,” BP wrote.

Natural oil seeps?

To which Stuart Smith, a New Orleans attorney replies:

If there are seeps in the area, they are not natural. I can assure you of that. BP was required to conduct a seafloor survey prior to applying for a permit to drill. If these seeps were not discovered during the survey – which they apparently weren’t – they must be related to the disaster and the heavy-handed methods used to attempt to seal the well.

To which BP quickly responds:

When we used the word “natural,” we meant it in the way that plastic surgery is meant to “naturally” erase the effects of aging, a bit of botox, a brow-lift, a cheekbone implant, a face-lift, a slight ear raise, and then the smallest of nose jobs…and voila! The seafloor is naturally leaking oil, natural as a smile from Jack Nicholson’s Joker…

Or in other words…

Robin: “Natural” is to nature, like animals are in nature and animals have fat…and this fat can be used to make soap and when we use soap, we typically are trying to remove dirt from our skin and what is skin but a part of the human body which is composed of 70% water, water like what’s found in the Gulf of Mexico…and all that Gulf water is above the seafloor…the seafloor! So what does it mean, Batman?”

Batman: “Obviously Boy Wonder, it means we need to have done what Stuart Smith suggests…a full survey of the seafloor around the Macondo Well so we will finally know what the hell is going on down there…”

Drake: “Seriously, how many times does BP get to creatively tell the truth?”

Read the article:

Breakthrough in the Macondo Mystery: BP Admits to New Activity at Deepwater Horizon Site

Have a nice day.

New study reports FDA underestimated cancer risk from Gulf seafood…

Precisely...

A new study published online yesterday reports the Food and Drug Administration vastly underestimated the cancer risk from seafood when the agency allowed commercial fishing in the Gulf to resume.

Miriam Rotkin-Ellman and Gina Solomon of the Natural Resources Defense Council authored the study where they found that by using flawed assumptions and outdated risk assessment methods, the FDA allowed up to 10,000 times too much contamination and didn’t identify the risks to children and pregnant women posed by eating the contaminants.

Based on the study, the NRDC filed a petition asking the FDA to protect the public by setting a standard that limits PAH’s in seafood. PAH’s can cause cancer, birth defects, neurological delays and liver damage.

And, wouldn’t you know this ain’t the first time the government’s testing of seafood has been called into question.

Remember this one, last year?

“Citing what the law firm calls a state-of-the-art laboratory analysis, toxicologists, chemists and marine biologists retained by the firm of environmental attorney Stuart Smith contend that the government seafood testing program, which has focused on ensuring the seafood was free of the cancer-causing components of crude oil, has overlooked other harmful elements. And they say that their own testing — examining fewer samples but more comprehensively — shows high levels of hydrocarbons from the BP spill that are associated with liver damage.”

Or how about this one:

A survey of 547 coastal residents in the four Gulf states by the Natural Resources Defense Council found they had seafood consumption rates far higher than those being used by federal and state regulators to determine if contamination levels pose a risk to human health, “What we are saying is our survey identified large numbers of people who are eating more seafood than the FDA (federal Food and Drug Administration) assumes in its guidelines. My assumption is there are thousands if not hundreds of thousands of people who are not protected by the FDA guidelines.”

Which of course leads a reasonable person to wonder…who exactly is the FDA trying to protect?

Perhaps it’s British Petroleum…

By the FDA saying it’s safe to fish, the fishers who might have questioned the safety of the seafood and refused to bring potentially contaminated fish to market would seem to have left themselves open to having their claims denied by the GCCF, as Ken Feinberg points to the opened waters and says, you could have earned a living according to the FDA, you simply chose not to, and that is not BP’s fault.

Or maybe it’s the Obama Administration…

To most people paying attention to what was going on in the Gulf last summer, it seemed that what the Obama administration wanted more than anything else was for this whole oil spill thing to just go away, from the all the oil is gone pie chart to the US Coast Guard bending to the will of BP at every moment. Not a big leap to see the FDA pitching in to help, declaring the seafood safe, and attempting to move the problems of the Gulf a little further from the minds of most Americans.

Well, the FDA certainly isn’t trying to protect the public…

I mean, they either really suck at their job, or more likely, they have been putting the public second in importance for decades…sincerely, ever done a Google search on FDA scandal?

Yeah, it ain’t pretty…and the FDA?

They ain’t right…who knows who they were trying to protect…quite possible they don’t even know anymore, especially when Big Pharma didn’t have anything to do with the oil spill. Without the pharmaceutical industry calling the shots, or Monsanto…face it, the FDA is just lost.

Read the article and the report:

New Study Says FDA Underestimated Seafood Contamination Risk After BP Oil Spill

Have a nice day.

More about the (not) leaking Macondo Well…

is more than just what you can get the public to believe...

Ed Note: The USCG now taking a fresh look at pictures of the oil they previously denied was there.

Look, I’m not trying to play the role of conspiracy buff here, but if there is one thing any of us who follow the oil spill news knows, it is:

1. Truth takes a second place to narrative.

2. Order of response: deny everything, and if caught denying, then deny it again.

I think back to the arguments about flow rates, the toxicity of Corexit and whether it was still being used, about how much wildlife was being killed, the keeping of photographers and news people out of the spill zone, BP’s purchasing of scientists at universities, all the issues of transparency with the GCCF, the killing of cameras at the well head…etc…

It’s about the control of information, and with this control, the narrative can be manipulated in favor of BP, Feinberg, the government or whoever…whoever is paying the most to control said narrative.

So, keeping all that in mind, we come back to the question that Stuart Smith continues to investigate, what is going on at the Macondo Well? Is it leaking again? Is the sea floor rupturing?

Frankly, I sure as hell hope not, course my hopes are centered on the people and the environment of the region. I would imagine that BP really hopes not too, course…we know what their main concern is… Correct, the safety and welfare of adorable puppies and kittens worldwide, and especially in the Gulf. So, BP denies there is oil coming from the Macondo well site. BP denies they hired any boats to skim for oil. The Coast Guard (about as independent from BP as Feinberg) also denies the same things and so we can go back home now, get some rest, forget about it…

Yet, then we read:

BP’s Denial Upended: Gulf Flyover Surveillance Reveals Large Amount of Surface Oil at Deepwater Horizon Site

And then, the next day we read:

More Questions for BP: Why Is There a Massive Oil Production Vessel at the Deepwater Horizon Site?

And also:

Why hasn’t all the oil gone?

And one starts to wonder…

Are we fighting another narrative war, all over again?

Because BP and the Coast Guard denying any oil is leaking from the site of the Deepwater Horizon is a familiar one, it’s what they maintained days after the oil rig exploded and sank, days before the oil began to flow, days before their narrative was exposed as a facade.

Hopefully, that won’t be the case…again.

Have a nice day.

Hear the one about the sealed Macondo Well?

Bloody hell...

More oil in the Gulf of Mexico…

British Petroleum says it is investigating a new sheen of oil, but did not say where they have found said sheen. Nor did they say what is causing said sheen.

What they did say is it wasn’t found near “any existing BP operations,” oh, and they added “there is a lot of sheen in the Gulf of Mexico area” and that it didn’t necessarily come from a BP (Macondo) well.

But remember back in July, that sheen confirmed to have been most definitely found in the vicinity of the Macondo Well?

No?

Stuart Smith sure does:

“Oil from the Macondo Well site is fouling the Gulf anew – and BP is scrambling to contain both the crude and the PR nightmare that waits in the wings. Reliable sources tell us that BP has hired 40 boats from Venice to Grand Isle to lay boom around the Deepwater Horizon site – located just 50 miles off the Louisiana coast. The fleet rushed to the scene late last week and worked through the weekend to contain what was becoming a massive slick at the site of the Macondo wellhead, which was officially “killed” back in September 2010.”

Smith goes onto quote a letter written by BK Lim, a prominent geohazards specialist for thirty years. This letter was sent to US Reps Fred Upton and John Shimkus:

“There is no question that the oil seepages, gas columns, fissures and blowout craters in the seafloor around the Macondo wellhead… have been the direct result of indiscriminate drilling, grouting, injection of dispersant and other undisclosed recover activities. As the rogue well had not been successfully cemented and plugged at the base of the well by the relief wells, unknown quantities of hydrocarbons are still leaking out from the reservoir at high pressure and are seeping through multiple fault lines to the seabed. It is not possible to cap this oil leakage.”

So, while British Petroleum is now being very careful to not say where the oil is, or where it may have come from, perhaps it’s the right time for someone to compel them to say exactly what the hell is going on…

Or are we going to have another war over flow-rate estimates, all over again?

Read the articles:

BP investigating new oil sheen in Gulf of Mexico

Oil Rising Again from Macondo Well: BP Hires Fleet of 40 Shrimp Boats to Lay Boom Around Old Deepwater Horizon Site

Is BP’s Macondo Well Site Still Leaking? Fresh Oil on the Gulf Raises Concerns and Haunting Memories

Have a nice day.

Ed Note…BP and a Coast Guard official now say “the sheen was found near two abandoned exploration well sites in the Green Canyon Block in the Gulf of Mexico. According to an online map by the U.S. Department of Energy, the Green Canyon Block – a large square-shaped area of water south of Louisiana – is south and west of the Mississippi Canyon Block where BP’s Macondo well blew up.”

So…let the debate continue: is it 500 barrels a day or 36,000?

Now, have a nice day.

Ed Note, Part 2…Daren Beaudo, BP’s latest spokesman says no oil is leaking from the Macondo well and he denies any vessels were hired to clean up anything, per the report by Stuart Smith…as far as the sheen, “We think it’s silt from a subsurface shallow water pool,” Beaudo said.

So…let the debate continue: is it 5000 barrels a day or 46,000?

Silt.

That certainly is an answer.

Now, now, have a nice day.