Oil on the sea floor of the Gulf

To me, this is a reason that no one should be able to deny for getting away from fossil fuels:
From Fox News:

Up to 10 million gallons of crude oil from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill has settled at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico, where it is threatening wildlife and marine ecosystems, according to a new study.

After studying the samples, the researchers made a map of the areas affected by the spill. About 3,243 square miles are covered with oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill, they found.

There was a previous study trying to determine the same thing.  They came to a similar conclusion:

The new study supports the findings of another independent study, which found that about 10 percent of the spill’s oil made it to the Gulf floor. Using hopane, a hydrocarbon found in oil, the researchers of that study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in October 2014, analyzed sediment samples to see how much oil had fallen to the bottom of the Gulf.

The new study calculates that 3 to 5 percent of the oil from the spill sank to the ocean floor, but the results of the two studies aren’t that different, Chanton said.

“Our number is a little bit more conservative than theirs,” he said, but “if the two approaches agree within a factor of two, that’s pretty good for estimating all of the oil on the seafloor.”

Every mechanical system fails.  Meaning, 100% certain, Keystone XL will leak.  Oil wells in the Arctic will result in spills.  Fukushima happens.  The new wells that are being allowed now off the Atlantic coast will put oil into the water.  It’s not if, it’s when.  These are externalities that are not being completely priced into the product today.  It is, unfortunately, a proper function of government to account for externalities and increase prices accordingly, through taxes and/or regulations.


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