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For example, we can now expect the Gulf of Mexico to become uninhabitable.
Now, now, lets be sensible. Even if we look at the absolute nightmare scenario, people are not going to fall down and die because of noxious gasoline fumes rising from the Gulf.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 06:18:45 AM EST
What if the entire reservoir leaks out? What is the total amount of oil that would be spilled?

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 06:23:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Then we have a very different situation, at least if it all leaks out during a short period of time.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 06:29:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
So, turning a huge problem into a different huge problem is an improvement?

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 06:56:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What?

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 07:04:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sorry, I thought your previous comment was a justification for the nuke solution...

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 07:07:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The shrimp industry has just collapsed, and it is not coming back.  The same is true of other seafood.  So a whole lot of folk are now out of a job, forever.  Okay, they can retrain--for a job where?  Not in the Gulf of Mexico I think.  

But it is worse than that.  

A friend of a friend lives on a beautiful barrier island, Dauphin Island, off the coast of Alabama.  When the wind is from the wrong direction now, the air reeks, and if it persists you get headaches.  

Half the island is already sealed off by the National Guard.  It is a no-go zone.  Nobody goes in or out.  

At the point you are getting dizziness and headaches from petroleum exposure, you are taking brain damage, and usually respiratory damage as well.  

This friend unfortunately already suffers from a health effect of previous chemical exposure.  By his doctor's orders, he can not even pump his own gas.  (Note Bene:  In the US to day most gas stations are self-service, meaning you pump the fuel into your car yourself.  The attendant just collects the money.)  Just living in his house he is now taking unacceptable exposure.

He is just beginning to understand he will have to leave.  

And others?  Who knows what will happen?  They will find jobs cleaning up the oil perhaps?  That career will never end for lack of work to do!  But they take exposure--more than my friend.  In a few months they will have to quit or they will get sick and then they will die.  

But we are only two months into this catastrophe.  We have at least two more months to go, maybe four, and maybe more than that.  It will get a lot worse than it is now, even if there are no hurricanes to crown this record-breaking high-temperature (for the tropical Atlantic and GoM) season.  

In one sense you are right:  People will hang on long after it is unsafe and unhealthy.  And then what happens happens.  

The Fates are kind.

by Gaianne on Thu Jun 17th, 2010 at 11:11:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Most of the people interviewed on TV are mad because they can't go fishing in their fossil-fueled fishing boats or on holiday cruises in their fossil-fueled cabin cruisers. Just a bit of a disconnect there...
by asdf on Fri Jun 18th, 2010 at 12:58:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just a bit of a disconnect there...
 

Oh, for sure!  

All you can do is laugh!  

The Fates are kind.

by Gaianne on Fri Jun 18th, 2010 at 01:55:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It's coming back in a few years, as strong as ever. Just look at all the other spills we've had; Exxon Valdez, Prestige, Ixtoc I, the Persian Gulf spill etc.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Fri Jun 18th, 2010 at 06:59:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
To pick one of your examples, Prince William Sound, the site of the Exxon Valdez disaster, has never come back.  

The species that were destroyed or displaced at the time have not returned.

The Fates are kind.

by Gaianne on Fri Jun 18th, 2010 at 12:48:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Mussel tissue chemistry is not a particularly satisfying indicator of recovering "recovery."

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Restoraton Project Final Report: Final 2005-2006 LTEMP Oil Monitoring Report Restoration Project

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Jun 18th, 2010 at 03:51:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Survival Acres has posted this video from the Gulf.  If you remember those videos of President Obama on the beaches with the "clean-up" workers, watch and find out how those videos were done.  

Collapse of the region has begun.  

The Fates are kind.

by Gaianne on Sat Jun 19th, 2010 at 04:33:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's worth remembering that the original loss of life occurred because of a gas leak of methane, which then ignited. The list of gases that such a well can produce , as I just learned, is considerable.

Capitalism searches out the darkest corners of human potential, and mainlines them.
by geezer in Paris (risico at wanadoo(flypoop)fr) on Sat Jun 19th, 2010 at 07:06:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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