The BP Oil Spill In The Gulf Of Mexico

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It is well known that in 2010 a oil spill occurred in the Gulf of Mexico. The oil rig Deepwater Horizon, owned by BP, exploded and sank and caused a continued oil leak that released amlost 5 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, the worst oil spill in U.S. history (Biello). In an address delivered inJune of 2010, President Obama called the oil spill “the worst environmental disaster America has ever faced” (Obama). Given the magnitude of the spill, and the media attention surrounding the issue, the entire topic became an emotional subject and strong opinions were formed regarding the nature of the spill and the correct way to proceed with containment and restoration. Of the many debates surrounding the issue, one which falls prey…show more content…
While this fear seems valid when constructed without context, applying the specifics of the BP oil spill show this line of reasoning to be a slippery slope fallacy. Spending 58 million dollars on one hotel now will not lead to the complete squandering of the rest of the restoration resources simply because, in comparison to the total funds, 58 million dollars is a small sum. When viewed through the everyday experiences of a regular civilian, 58 million dollars is an almost incomprehensible amount of money. However, The Telograph states that BP has spent 28 billion dollars on containment and cleaning efforts and set aside another 20 billion as a compensation fund (Sherwell and Lawler). When set against a total effort of 48 billion dollars that may be contributed from BP alone, 58 million dollars accounts for roughly 0.12% of the potential resources dedicated towards the aftermath of the spill in the Gulf. Given in figures more consistent with the experience of the average person, this is the equivalent of about 60 dollars out of a 50 thousand dollar salary. While an ideological claim could be made that all resources should be used on areas impacted physically and directly, the actual cost of the hotel is too small to be an influence on wide scale decision making for the larger recovery effort
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