View Full Version : More oil "spilling" into the Gulf of Mexico?

03-25-2011, 01:24 AM
Louisiana BAYOUKEEPER talks about recent oil in the Gulf.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Over the past few weeks, there were numerous reports of dead dolphins across the Gulf, including a report of 5 dead dolphins near Rattlesnake Bayou on the east side of Barataria Bay, LA. As part of our basin patrol program, we planned a fly over of the Barataria Basin, with Bonnie Schumaker, http://www.OnWingsOfCare.org , to look for dead/stranded dolphins and other wildlife.

After receiving reports Saturday, March 19, 2011, of oil and strong petroleum odors 23 miles south of Grand Isle, we decided to fly over the Gulf. We flew from New Orleans, south along the Mississippi River and across the east side of Barataria Bay toward the Gulf of Mexico. At first we didn't see anything out of the ordinary, brown heavily silted waters coming from the muddy Mississippi River dumping into the Gulf. Typical spring high river water. We flew a little to the east and found more of the same. We turned to the southwest, heading toward the reported oil sighting south of Grand Isle, LA. Almost immediately we began seeing, what appeared to be, large areas of oil just below the surface along with streaks of multicolored "sheen" on the surface. The smell of petroleum was thick in the air. We flew southwest, to approximately 40 miles south of Grand Isle and followed the "plumes" and "sheen" north all the way in to Grand Terre Island and Grand Isle. The "sheen" appeared to be flowing into Barataria Bay through Four Bayou Pass and Grand Isle Pass.

We saw only a few birds, one large, dead Red Fish and only three dolphins during the entire fly over. Mike Roberts, Louisiana Bayoukeeper, reported what we were seeing to the Coast Guard, as we were flying in.

The fly overs help us identify problems and their locations in the water. The next day, Sunday, March 20, 2011, we left Lafitte/Barataria in the Bayoukeeper Patrol Vessel to collect samples. The wind was blowing from the south and we began smelling petroleum around Wilkinson Canal. It could have been coming from Bay Jimmy, as clean up from the BP spill is ongoing in this area. We continued south of Bay Jimmy into Barataria Bay. The petroleum smell became stronger and we began to see foam and what appeared to be small globs of weathered oil/dispersant. We grabbed samples of the water and globs. The wind and current was kicking up waves and making it very choppy. We came across thick streams of red/brown foam in the current lines at Coup Au , Four Bayou Pass and Grand Isle Pass and grabbed samples. It was too rough in front of the Islands for our boat to get samples from the uninhabited beaches. We will make another trip to collect samples when it calms down. We will post the results of our sampling as soon as we get them back.

Our Councilman, Chris Roberts has been and continues to monitor this incident; as well as, the ongoing impacts from the BP Spill. Here is a link to a WWL report. http://www.wwl.com/Jefferson-official-on-reported-oil-slick/9437034

Bonnie Schumaker, http://www.OnWingsOfCare.org , is a fantastic pilot and committed advocate. She donates her plane, time and 50% of the fuel for the fly overs she has taken us on. We are grateful for all she does. We hope you will take the time to go to her website.

Tracy Kuhns
Louisiana Bayoukeeper, Inc
Fishing Community Family Support Center
P.O. Box 207
Barataria, LA 70036
504-689-8849 Office
504-689-7687 Fax


07-21-2011, 03:40 PM
I came across this article today, which details the slowdown in oil drilling permits.
It seems to me like the oil guys got together in a room and decided what would be the best course of action to get what they want.
What they are saying and what might be true, is that the delays will cost jobs.

In a job starved economy, this is certainly a savvy way on fight any proposed government delay on their part.
It costs them nothing to loudly proclaim that more drilling will mean more jobs and it is absolutely true that more jobs would be created.

That proclamation intentionally glosses over the risks of ignoring safety requirements by trying to fast forward the permit process.
There are times when bureaucratic slowness absolutely make you want to pound your head on a wall, but in this case, slowing down and getting it right protects us all.