Obama Visits Gulf Oil Spill, as Disaster Worsens
May 2, 2010
(ChattahBox)—With the Gulf oil spill quickly spinning out of control, President Obama elected to view the disaster firsthand on Sunday. Obama and his team traveled to Louisiana and had plans to meet with the federal response team on the ground, coordinating attempts to clean up the oil slick, which is more than 130 miles long and headed for the shores of Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida and Alabama.
The weekend’s rough stormy weather curtailed crews’ efforts to disperse the growing oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico. “Mother Nature has not exactly been friendly,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said. “The weather conditions have impeded in situ burning… skimming also and some of the other operations that could be under way.”
“Commandant Admiral Thad Allen of the US Coast Guard, appointed by Obama to spearhead the government response, said response teams were waiting for the right “window of opportunity” to carry out more controlled burns on the slick. A trial burn on a small patch of the oil was conducted last Wednesday but since then the wind has shifted to blow the slick — and toxic smoke from any oil burns — directly towards the Louisiana coast. The forecast for Sunday was for more cruel onshore winds and Allen has warned it is a matter of when, not if, the slick the makes landfall.”
With the sunken Deepwater Horizon oil rig leaking about 210,000 gallons of oil per day into the environmentally sensitive Gulf region, the disaster may surpass the catastrophic Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska in 1989.
Photo Credit: Official White House Photo by Pete Souza