Oil spill is the release of liquid petroleum into water or environment. Oil Spills occur due to the mistakes committed by humans while extracting fuel from waters. Some times it might be accidental. At times, illegal dumpers dump waste oil into the ocean in order to avoid the cost of decomposing waste oil.
Oil Spill Cleanup
Oil spills kill marine habitat and wild life, pollute environment and alter eco system for many years. Of all the oil spills occurred in the history, Gulf of Mexico oil spill is the worst one. The disaster killed 11 workers on platform and injured more than 17 people.
Thousands of people and hundreds of industries were affected directly and indirectly. The leap was capped after gushing 5 million barrels of oil into the sea. BP has agreed that it was the mistake of their internal staff and the company is liable for all the consequences and the oil spill cleanup process.
Oil Spill Cleanup threats
Oil spill pose a great threat to birds and marine habitat. Particularly, birds are prone to hypothermia. Hypothermia is a condition where the body temperature decreases than the normal temperature required for regular metabolism. Bird feathers consist of air spaces which help them in maintaining body temperature.
When an oil slick is formed, oil is absorbed by these feathers and sticks to it. It closes the air spaces preventing insulation. This decreases the body temperature of the birds resulting in Hypothermia. When oil sticks to feathers of birds, it makes them heavier. Due to heavy weight, they cannot fly and get drowned into water. Marine animals consume water to clean themselves. When the water is poisoned, it affects the inner body metabolism. The faster the oil spill cleanup process the better a chance the animals have.
Oil Spill Cleanup damage to you
It is very important to resolve this issue at the earliest. Oil spill cleanup and recovery of oil spill is not an easy task and depends on various factors. Nature of the oil spilled, temperature of water and type of shorelines are some of the factors to be taken into consideration while starting the clean up process.
Bioremediation is one of the clean up methods wherein biological agents or micro organisms are used to break down oil. By spraying sheen with bioremediation, we can remove sheen within minutes. Controlled Burning is also used to reduce oil content in water. However, it should only be done when there are low winds.
Chemical dispersants are another source of reducing oil content from water. They act similar to detergents. However, these dispersants are toxic to corals. Centrifuging can be of help to some extent. Water is sucked along with oil and then oil is separated with centrifuge. Solidifying oil molecules is another method to remove oil content. Solidifiers like dry hydrophobic polymers change the physical state of oil from liquid to semi solid which makes it easier to separate them from water.
Though there are many ways to clean up oil spills, oil cannot be completely removed from the waters. They still pose threat to marine habitat and environment for years. Prevention of such accidents is the only way to safe guard environment. It is high time we implement environmental reforms and save our planet and get this oil spill cleaned up