You may have noticed that I haven’t been saying much about the white elephant (or big black blob) in the ocean. This is for two reasons: first, I try to stick to my main subjects here, which are dogfish, shark research, and fisheries management. I like to throw in some oddball internet stuff every so often but in general I try to write what I know. Secondly, the BP disaster is being covered much more thoroughly in other forums. Deep Sea News has been following the story from the beginning, and Southern Fried Science has a handy list of other places you can check to follow the progress of the oil as it destroys the Gulf of Mexico and potentially the entire Atlantic coast.
Documents released today (or at least reported on today) reveal that BP knowingly and willingly cut corners in order to save time and money. The company ignored advice from Halliburton that could have made the well much safer, and even turned a deaf ear to the Deepwater Horizon’s own chief engineer, who called the situation a “nightmare well.”
I guess we can stop the finger pointing now (though BP CEO Tony Hayward’s appearance before Congress on Thursday should be a hoot). Yet again we see the end result of trusting profit-motivated entities to regulate themselves. Will this time finally be the time we learn that this is a bad idea?