The two million gallons of Corexit 9500A dispersant used after BP’s 2010 Gulf catastrophe made human rights abuses related to the 4.9 million barrels of oil released from Macondo Prospect after the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded 52 times more toxic than crude alone, according to new research.(1)
A new Georgia Institute of Technology and Universidad Autonoma de Aguascalientes (UAA) research report shows that testing Corexit mixed with BP oil on tiny sea life demonstrated increased toxicity up to 52-fold over crude alone, magnifying human and Earth rights abuses. Previous studies showed Corexit increased crude’s toxicity by 11-fold.
The lethal dispersant banned in the U.K.and Swedenwas used in BP’s oil “cleanup” with no discussion, debate, or explanation. Later, the stated rationale for using it in the Gulf Operation was to keep oil from sensitive wetlands and coastlines. It did the opposite.
Dispersants disperse or spread oil. Corexit made BP’s crude invisible from the air.
Before used in the Gulf, it was known that Corexit would slow natural bacterial decomposition of crude, making oil persist longer in the environment,(2) and that there were more effective dispersants on the market. (Deborah Dupré, Vampire of Macondo)
It was also known that Corexit’s solubilizing action makes crude more bioavailable, causing it to bio-accumulate, meaning accumulate in tissues of organisms at the bottom of the food chain, and become more concentrated as it works its way up the chain – into our children’s school lunches, onto dinner tables, and in American’s bodies.
Even BP admitted Corexit potentially bio-accumulates.(3)
“[D]ispersing the oil… is making it impossible to recover the dispersed oil at the surface while plumes of the dispersed oil remain at depth, entering the food chain at many levels where it will bio-accumulate as it moves up the food chain,” stated marine biologist Dr. David Guggenheim.(4) “Dispersing the oil means more of it will likely travel with prevailing currents to destinations downstream, including Cuba, Mexico, the Florida Keys, and the eastern seaboard of the United States.”
The new toxicity tests showed Corexit increased mortality of rotifers, microscopic animals at the base of the Gulf food web.
Since 2010, 40% of the nation’s seafood supply, the fabled multi-billion-dollar Gulf industry, has been stalled under the torrent of oil and Corexit. In 2010, Americans ate four billion pounds of seafood annually, according to physician Dr. Russell Blaylock.(5) One-third of that was from southLouisiana– heavily promoted and consumed.
This new report comes on the heels of another research report showing Corexit made BPs crude oil travel faster and further.
Corporate government ‘Safe Seafood Myth’
In its “SafeGulf” campaign, state and federal governments encourage swimming in the Gulf and buying Gulf seafood. Don’t if you value your health and longevity.
Aquatic ecotoxicologist Dr. Chris Pincetich found EPA tests counted death by dispersant only if tested fish died within the first 96 hours.(6) If the fish was still alive at 96 hours, regardless of whether or not it died later, government researchers did not tally the fish as dead. The test dismissed longer-term and sub-lethal effects. Then the “Sniff Tests” began.
“They sent us stuff around the room to smell stuff,” said Dean Blanchard, the nation’s largest seafood processor before the historic Gulf crime began. “We had to guess which one was five parts per million, which had ten parts per million, which was Corexit and which was BP oil.”(7)
“It’s ridiculous,” responded New Orleans-based environmental attorney Stuart Smith. “… the smell test is only going to tell you if that fish recently has been exposed to hydrocarbons. It’s not going to tell you if that fish has been eating contaminated shrimp or contaminated crabs.”
“The fraud is that they hire laboratories who set artificially high minimum detection levels,” Smith explains. “So when all the tests come back, they say, ‘Non-Detect. Non-Detect. Non-Detect.’”(8)
Marine scientist Scott Milroy said seafood samples he gathered in September 2010 along Mississippi’s coast showed levels hundreds times higher than government sniffers found.(9)
Poisoning American’s food chain
“Our study indicates the increase in toxicity may have been greatly underestimated following the Macondo well explosion,” said UAA’s Roberto-Rico Martinez, who led today’s newly reported study published online by the Environmental Pollution journal, due for the Feb. 2013 print edition.
The researchers used BP-wrecked Macondo oil and Corexit, “the dispersant required by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for cleanup,” they state. The EPA obtains 90% of its funding from oil giants to protect industry instead of the people.(10)
“Dispersants are (EPA) preapproved to help clean up oil spills and are widely used during disasters,” Corexit researcherMartinezsaid.
Obama’s appointed EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson had trouble lying consistently about that.
“If it’s on the list and they want to use it, then they are preauthorized to do so,”Jacksonsaid.(11)
A few weeks later, at a congressional hearing in August 2010,Jacksontold Senator Mukulski, “There is no permit that EPA has given to allow use of these dispersants.”(12)
Gulf coast physician Dr. Russell Blaylock in 2010 asserted about seafood contaminants, “You can’t count on government agencies like the FDA and the EPA to protect you.”
Martinezand his research collaborator,SchoolofBiologychair Professor Terry Snell, used five rotifer strains in their study to test toxicity of oil, dispersant and mixtures. Rotifers are used by ecotoxicologists to assess toxicity in marine waters due to their fast response time, ease of use in tests and sensitivity to toxicants.
“In addition to causing mortality in adult rotifers, as little as 2.6 percent of the oil-dispersant mixture inhibited rotifer egg hatching by 50 percent,” Science Daily reports about the new study.
Inhibiting rotifer egg hatching is important because they hatch each spring, reproduce in the water column, and provide food for baby fish, shrimp and crabs.
“What remains to be determined is whether the benefits of dispersing the oil by using Corexit are outweighed by the substantial increase in toxicity of the mixture,” said Snell.
It had already been determined that Corexit and crude in air, water and food pose serious health risks, particularly pregnant women, the elderly and people with health vulnerabilities, as NRDC Senior Scientist Dr. Gina Solomon warned Louisianans and other Gulf Coast residents in May 2010.
Hiding the evidence
Since the Gulf oil atrocity began, women and children have bled from all orifices, similar to dying and dead Gulf dolphins – just as Corexit is supposed to do, according to EPA whistleblower Hugh Kaufman. As early as July 2010 along the Gulf, poisoned men, women and children were coughing up blood.(13)
“’The… evidence strongly suggests that BP worked with the Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, the FAA, private security contractors, and local law enforcement… to conceal the operations disposing of the animals from the media and the public,” say a team of journalists, including Charles Hambleton, Academy Award-winning documentary director of The Cove, and journalist Jerry Cope. They found the petrochemical-military-industrial-complex (PMIC) conducting Gulf animal disposal operations under cover of darkness.(15)
“Coast Guardsmen closed beaches and coastal island areas where dead Gulf animals were collected. Armed private security contractors and local law enforcement officials kept areas off limits where dead animals were dumped, mainly at Magnolia Springs landfill. The nearby weigh station where Waste Management trucks roll through with cargoes was also restricted by at least one sheriff’s deputies in a patrol car, 24/7.”
Until collapsing at work with “New Gulf Syndrome,” Robyn Hill was Beach Ambassador forGulfShores. Across from the beach, Hill “smelled an overwhelming stench,” explained Cope and Hambleton. “She… witnessed two contract workers dumping plastic bags full of dead birds and fish in a residential Waste Management dumpster, which was then protected by a security guard. Within five minutes, a Waste Management collection truck emptied the contents and the guard departed.”
Sperm whale carcasses were suspected of being destroyed atShellBeachinHopedale,Louisiana, the island’s “operational end” closed to unauthorized personnel and airspace. Cope and Hambleton provided photographic evidence of that area being prepped to receive suspected whale carcasses for disposal.(16)
“We’ve since heard many other stories from truckers who are trucking carcasses in refrigerated vans to Mexico,” Cope and Hambleton said. “Carcasses are just not showing up where they need to, which is as body counts for essentially this war on the gulf. (Emphasis added) ‘Every oil ‘spill’ related death has a cash value, animal or human.’” (Dupré, Vampire of Macondo)
Death by dispersant
Dr. Rodney Soto and marine toxicologist Dr. Ott were among the few professionals alerting the public to avoid Gulf seafood, water and air as the FDA allowed unsafe levels of seafood contaminants.
“Our findings add to a long list of evidence that FDA is overlooking risks from chemical contaminants in food,” researcher Miriam Rotkin-Ellman at NRDC has previously warned.(17) “We must not wait for people to get sick or cancer rates to rise. We need FDA to act now to protect the food supply.”
The scope of this environmental terror is unfathomable. Ott estimated 4-5 millionGulfCoastresidents are suffering or will suffer until death from the Gulf Operation human rights violations. Kaufman and Simmons both placed that number between 20 million and 40 million.
“They have oil in their bodies,” Ott said in October 2010 about her autopsies of people who’d been to the Gulf.
After only one week in Grand Isle, Louisiana, workers were poisoned. In one case, a man who worked one week in Grand Isle’s cleanup went home and dropped dead.
Ott said she knew people down to 4.7% of their lung capacity; hearts were enlarging to compensate; and GulfCoastpeople’s esophagi were dissolving. Only five months after the blowout, along with catching fish with “horrifying lesions,” fishers were finding shrimp without shells, fish with “black gill disease,” and fish with organs a different color than before April 2010. (Vampire of Macondo)
Mutations continued. By 2012, eyeless shrimp, fish with extra gills and fins and other abnormalities were commonly found. The Gulf ecosystem sustains more damage each passing day, according to Smith.
“I believe this is going to wreak havoc on people’s health for two decades unless we stop ignoring it,” Ott has said. “The longer it’s in your body, the more damage it’s going to cause.”
Even after the earlier research and warnings, Corexit carpet-bombing continued.
“We have been attacked by our own military,” a commenter writes under a video of the Air Force aerial spraying Corexit.(18)
“They’re coming in at night. They’re lying about it but they’re spraying dispersants all over our shrimping grounds,” said Blanchard.(19)
“And they were actually spraying this Corexit in the air all around where people were living, with kids and children, and continuously saying how safe it was,” another Louisianian, Clint Guidry, explained.
“The system’s broken,” shrimp king Blanchard says. “When a regulatory agency can’t regulate the people they’re supposed to watch, when they’re being bought off, we’re no better than a third-world country.”
Over 100 scientists, researchers, organization leaders, and other human rights defenders, some as distant as Norway and Greece, signed a Scientists Consensus Statement on the Use of Chemical Dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico,(20) calling on the Obama Administration to halt chemical aerial spraying in the Gulf region – to no avail.
Meanwhile, Obama claimed his “single most important responsibility as President is to keep American people safe.
“It’s the first thing that I think about when I wake up in the morning. It’s the last thing that I think about when I go to sleep at night,” Obama said, as he exposed 40 million people to Corexit carpet-bombing, referred to metaphorically in Congress as ‘Agent Orange.”
(1) Science News, Gulf of Mexico Clean-Up Makes 2010 Spill 52-Times More Toxic; Mixing Oil With Dispersant Increased Toxicity to Ecosystems, Science Daily, Nov. 2012 (2) Jon E. Lindstrom, Daniel M. White, Joan F. Braddock, Biodegradation of Dispersed Oil Using COREXIT 9500, A Report Produced for The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Spill Prevention and Response, Institute of Arctic Biology and Institute of Northern Engineering, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775, 30 June 1999 (3) BP says Corexit potentially bioaccumulates, (now deleted from the Internet) (4) Ibid. (5) Dupré, Censored Gulf survival news: Dr. exposes contaminated fish. Urgent special report, Examiner, 16 July 2010: http://tinyurl.com/83e9ruv (6) Dupré, Censored Gulf news: Dr. Pincetich on Intel Hub Radio tonight (video), Examiner, 20 July 2010: http://tinyurl.com/874sas5 (7) Dean Blanchard, The Big Fix
(8) Stuart Smith, The Big Fix
(9) Standards for Gulf’s Catch Put to Sniff Test After Spill, Wall Street Journal,2 November 2010
(10) Josh Tickell, Fuel, Green Planet Productions, 2008 (11) Paul Quinlan, Less Toxic Dispersants Lose Out in BP Oil Spill Cleanup, The New York Times, 22 January 2006 (12) CNN, Corexit Dispersant Hearing:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tk8ATfN6Xok (13) See Dupré: 1) Censored Gulf news: People bleeding internally, millions poisoned says EPA whistleblower, Examiner, 21 July 2010; and 2) Scientists find Corexit made BP Gulf catastrophe worse is not news, Examiner, 31 May 2011 (14) Dupré, Censored Gulf News: Coughing up blood and other horror stories, Examiner, 31 July 2010: http://tiny.cc/xhp1cw (15) Jerry Cope and Charles Hambleton, The Crime of the Century, What BP and the US Government Don’t Want You to Know, Huffington Post, 4 Aug. 2010: http://tinyurl.com/2ckra9q (16) Ibid. (17) Fox News, Study: FDA Allowed Unsafe Levels Chemicals in Seafood after BP Oil Spill, Fox News, 12 Oct. 2011 (18) Ibid. (19) Blanchard, The Big Fix (20) David E. Guggenheim, Scientists Consensus Statement on the Use of Chemical Dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico, OceanDoctor.org, 26 July 2010: http://tinyurl.com/87fjfyp
About the Author:
New Orleans native Deborah Dupré reports censored human rights news stories. With Science and Ed. Specialist Grad Degrees from U.S.and Australian universities, Dupré’s been a human and Earth rights advocate over 30 years in those countries and Vanuatu. Her unique humanitarian-based research and development work, including in some of the world’s least developed and most remote areas, led her to write articles appearing in dozens of popular print and Internet media internationally.
Her latest book is the nonfiction, Vampire of Macondo.
Visit her column at Examiner: http://www.examiner.com/user-gdeborahdupre
About the Book:
The untold story of psychopathic genocide of Americans by the petrochemical military industrial complex, of how BP’s Deepwater Horizon catastrophe has sickened and killed thousands of people on theGulf of MexicoCoastand government covered it up. Hear heart-rending cries of the victims. Read thoroughly documented evidence of crimes by Big Oil, the military, the seafood and tourism industries, health care providers, and corrupt government leaders.
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