A "slick" that ain't so slick

or “Yes, I’m aware there is a major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.”  As a result, I will preempt the cabinet post.

You’re right, I can’t ignore it any longer.  I can’t continue on my merry way with the new house, and act as though it’s all a bad nightmare, thinking when I awake, it will vanish like sleep.

Fish can swim away, right?  Dolphins and whales can too, correct?  Shrimp?  Not so much.  Crab?  Not really.  Yes, they swim, but not like fishes.  Oysters?  No way!  I’m concerned–very, very concerned.

Because I don’t watch TV news, I could pretend it wasn’t so bad, until a customer wrote, canceling their stay at Camp Dularge and asking for a full refund, with no plan for rescheduling in sight.  I think that is a bit extreme, because the fish will be fine, won’t they?

Major hurricanes.  Coastal land loss.  Chinese shrimp imports. Huge oil spill.  I’m not so sure that we can recover from one more disaster.

The white shrimp season opened yesterday, a few weeks early, in hopes that the poor local folks (and I DO mean poor) would have a chance at salvaging some of the shrimp before they are killed by the slick.  The oil is quite a few miles to the east of our estuary, but it still matters greatly.

The far-reaching ramifications of this spill will be dirty beaches along the whole Gulf Coast, including MS, AL, and FL, where tourism on the beaches abounds.  Louisiana doesn’t have a sandy beach, other than Grand Isle, and it may suffer as well.  Recreational fishing will be negatively impacted, because people are canceling trips already.  Vacations will be canceled.  Commercial fishing will also be impacted, both inland and offshore.

But enough about the humans.  What about the creatures?  We live in the middle of a unique place called an estuary–a place where freshwater and saltwater mix and mingle creating the perfect nursery ground for baby fish, shrimp, crab, and oysters.  A clean, healthy estuary is essential for them to grow up.  They migrate to this estuary and stay here eating zoo-plankton and phytoplankton until they are big enough to spawn.

If the oil reaches here, there is no predicting how their environment will be affected, and in turn, how the livelihoods of the bayou people will also be affected.  It is a tragic turn of events–a blow coastal communities are  not prepared to withstand, financially or emotionally.

To each of you faithful readers, will you please  join me in a prayer for a strong north wind that will blow the slick to the south to be dissipated by the deep waters of the Gulf; and pray meanwhile, they will be able to stop the flow of new oil from the drill site?

This is all we can do, while we sit helplessly watching the never-ending news coverage.

Contemplative,

BW

Thanks to Ms. Spice for posting this link.  If you would like to volunteer to help with cleaning wildlife or any of the other peripheral duties connected with the oil spill disaster, please visit this site and register there.

PS  I’m sorry I failed to mention the 11 workers who died in the explosion and their families.  We pray for peace and comfort for them in this time when nothing will make sense for a while.  Amen.

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Comments

A "slick" that ain't so slick — 36 Comments

  1. I thought of you, and the end result of this oil spill as soon as word of it got out to the public. My prayers will be there beside yours.

  2. I thought of you also and my prayers are with the whole area. I am in north Ms but this is a blow to all coastal states but La will suffer the most I think.

    PRAYERS

    Judy

  3. You crossed my mind last night as I was in bed contemplating this mess. I thought “What would Bayou Woman Say?” As always, you pulled through and put in words what so many souls are feeling.

  4. I’m with Pamela, Judy and Kelly—-you were the first on my mind when I heard the news 2 days ago. If prayer circles can heal the ailing then your legion of followers can certainly manifest a strong and sustained north wind—-more importantly, email BP, White House and congressional reps some strong language (respectfully) as to the attention we’re paying to this environmental catastrophe.

  5. I didn’t comment on the cabinets last night, because all I could think about at the time was the oil spill, and how you (as a business woman) would be affected. My heart and prayers go out to everyone who will feel the impact of this catastrophe. Maybe there is a silver lining though…”Washington” is finally listening about our wetlands. It’s a shame it takes something like this (death, injury, economics and environmental damage) to get the wax out of their ears and the blinders off.

    P.S. I Do like the cabinets!

  6. So far one bird near the location of Deepwater Horizon has been rescued.

    When men die in a coal mine the news media covers the families and communties for ten days.

    Had the coal mine explosion not happened, would national media even be covering an offshore accident?

    The fact that you have a cancellation before any evidence fishing will be impacted in Lafourche and Terrebonne proves that we are dealing with three forces:
    Loss of life
    Environmental loss
    and loss of media focus on the full range of the wetland crisis in Louisiana

    A Mississipp fishing company is moving its boats to Terrebonne, Morgan City for next four weeks.

    Reuters is reporting an inland drilling rig has capsized near Morgan City.

    Yesterday I thought perhaps the federal response would be good. Today I realize they never read the April 4 2010 AP story about Wine island and Racoon Island quoting folks from BTNEP.

    And the reporter who wrote that story is the key writer of the oil story. I guess prayer is our only option!

    • Lillian, by now you’ve read that the barge carrying the inland tipped over, and at last report, there was no diesel leaking out of it. Hopefully, it was not carrying any fuel at the time since it was headed for scrap. Seems like there would be OSHA regulations about that sort of thing and BIG BIG fines involved if ignored.

  7. We are in a pickle, BW. You know my prayers have been ascending for days. If the wind turns north I hope it blows like mad. I’m thinking of you and all those who make their living by or just enjoy being by the waters.

  8. This really makes me feel ill. BP needs to pay big time for this, but that won’t stop the destruction of life, the loss of income for many, many folks, and the coastal damage.

    I think it rather strange that I haven’t heard the first word about this being a possible terrorist attack. Think about it. It’s not any more far fetched than other attacks. Sure will put a dent in Obama’s plans for new offshore exploration and drilling.

    • Well, we’ve heard it here first! I hope there are no cyber cops out there looking for those key words, or we might be in big trouble!!! I will ask my oil rig expert some specific questions about that. Wish you were here.

      • I have a friend in Massachusetts email me about the spill. They heard it was an Al Queda attack and Obama was sending SWAT teams to every oil rig in the Gulf. She wanted to know if that had been reported down here.

        • SAY WHAT? Heather, did you read THAT? Okay, I want to know right now if there are SWAT teams on every rig. Lillian, are you on that assignment? Let’s see, Al Queda disguised as SWAT teams. Hmmmm. What kind of damage could they do on drilling rigs? Oh my goodness, my fingers could not type fast enough to type the novel that is in my head right now, but I fear it might be more frightening fact than fiction. No rigs in the gulf means all our oil comes from you know where. This will haunt me all day today.

  9. I figure to wait and see. Up here Katrina killed all the fish down there and the cold winter has killed the gators and birds down there already. I just wait and see. TV is evil and people are gullible.

    Till I see a reporter in a rubber raft out there I am waiting.

    • Ok, everyone, do you get Blu’s meaning? Blu, don’t put your head in the sand on this one. It is BAD, BAD, BAD. No reporter in her right mind would be floating around there in a rubber raft. I agree that TV is evil and that people are gullible. Ignorance is bliss, isn’t it? Enjoy your bliss, my friend, but those of us down here who smell the oil in the air don’t need to put our hand in the wound to believe . . . . .

  10. I am like the others in having my thoughts go to you and all of the those that are going to be impacted by this as soon as I heard about it. I had hoped/prayed they would be able to quell the leakage but, seems that is not going to happen anytime soon.
    I saw a news report when this first happened that stated it wouldn’t be any where near as bad as the Exxon Valdez. No, not as bad, worse!! I also listened to the report this evening regarding the coast guard and what they are doing to help clean this up but, 5,000 barrels a day is a lot to clean up.

    It is really going to hurt everyone from the shrimpers/fishermen right on up to those who would love to have a decent seafood meal or a nice vacation on the coast. I am so afraid it is going to spread along most of the southern coastal areas before it is over. I am praying for the families who lost loved ones, that northern wind and a stop of the leak.

  11. Good morning, everyone. Here is a succinct article that started my day. Of course, it is not good news where the crude oil spewage is concerned. I think I just made up a new word, but as the article so aptly states, this is more than a spill or leak.

    I want you all to know how much this catastrophe has me thinking about our dependency on petroleum and wondering what I could personally do to cut back my consumption. And then I ask myself just how much difference only one person could possibly make. I’m torn today, as I consider that my business concerns are directly tied to the wetlands here. Though already blighted, I’m not sure there will be anything beautiful to see as a result of this blow.

    This blog may become more about living off the wetlands than I ever imagined when it first began in 2007.

    Come, North Wind, and blow.

  12. Since moving to NM, I belong to some email groups back that way. I received some email today about people up in arms about it all the way back in NM. I did hear about the SWAT team thing. Obama did no send the teams there to shut rigs down but to check on safety and to make sure things are being done right. I believe in the power of prayer so keep on praying!

  13. I found you when I got a comment on my blogpost at http://horizonsmagazine.com/blog/?p=8839 about praying for the ocean. I included a link in my post to yours here since you had very insightful and relevant suggestions. I just read of the spill yesterday and was going to look today for a blogger online who was in the area — then you were handed to me. I enjoy your writing and will read more at your website.

    And thank you for mentioning the 11 workers who died in the explosion and their families, the news report I read did not even mention that. Bless you for the work you do.

  14. Have you read or heard about the use of hay for oil removal? As strange as it sounds, there are truckloads of it being staged in Florida. Here’s a link to the story:

    http://sandcastlemomma.blogspot.com/2010/05/oil-removal-its-as-simple-as-hay.html

    You can use scrapers and front loaders on open beaches, but not in marshland. It occurs to me that if the hay actually is working, it would be as good as anything out there now for estuaries and bayous. The hay wouldn’t hurt anything, and could be used in areas otherwise inaccessible to remediators.

    I could rant forever, but it won’t do a lick of good. So, I’m going to go off and figure out what will do some good 😉

    • Dear Shoreacres: The hay might be a good thing, though I don’t know who I could get this information to–maybe the parish president. But I wanted to tell you that the chemists have reported that this oil is not as thick as the Valdez oil, which is a good thing. They are saying that if it eases into the marsh, it will be best to leave it alone and let nature dissipate it. We would do more damage trying to get rid of it by artificial means. But I’m interested in what the hay might do, on the positive side of things. So thanks for the link.

  15. Hello.
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