The Oil Spill is Affecting Animals, but What About the Government?

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Since the dawn of the industrial revolution, mankind has increasingly become reliant on fossil fuels such as oil for energy. Oil fuels our car, warms our homes, generates our electricity, and creates a myriad of goods including everything that contains plastic. In our global economy, oil must be transported great distances to reach markets throughout the world. With seemingly increasing frequency, these journeys sometimes end in accidents that result in oil being spilled into the ocean. The most devastating oil spill, The Deepwater Horizon oil spill, occurred on April twentieth of this year. Deepwater Horizon is an oilrig located in the Gulf of Mexico and it is owned by B.P. Everything seemed to be running efficiently on the rig until …show more content…

Animals that live in the Gulf are beginning to show changes caused by the oil. One species in particular that is being affected by the oil is the brown pelican. They inhabit the area in which the oil is located and look to the ocean for their main source of food. The oil coating the ocean tricks the bird into thinking the water is calm and the bird will land in the water (Kaufman). Once the oil comes in contact with the pelican, it is no longer able to regulate its body temperature. Eventually, this causes hypothermia and the bird dies as a result. Birds are already beginning to wash up on shore of nearby coastlines at an abnormally large rate. In the last month, “…fifty dead brown pelicans were discovered dead on shore, much larger than the average fifteen dead birds in previous months” (Kaufman). If this trend continues at this pace, the eradication of a majority of the sea bird population in the Gulf is a serious possibility. Another species that is actually in danger of a major death rate is the shrimp and shellfish population. These types of animals are “…more vulnerable to oil and chemical dispersants because they are stationary” (Kaufman). The oil is toxic to these shellfish and will cause death in matter of a few hours (Kaufman). Shellfish are a main source of food for many different types of aquatic animals in the Gulf like various fish and bird species. As a result of the oil spill, competition for food has

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