4th Anniversary of BP Oil Spill Marked

Apr 17, 2014

David White, director of the Gulf of Mexico Restoration Campaign for the National Wildlife Federation
Credit WUSF

The wind- and wave-whipped St. Petersburg waterfront formed the backdrop for what amounted to a plea for more research into how marine life in the Gulf has been affected by the spill - and how to prevent it from happening again.

Congressman David Jolly was joined by St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman and David White with the National Wildlife Federation. White says a report published this week by his group traces oil from to the spill in every level of the food chain, from tiny plankton to whales. He says oil has been found in the embryos of white pelicans in Minnesota, where they nest after spending their winters n the Gulf.

"We know that this is not over by any means", White said. "The impacts of the Exxon Valdez did not show up until years after the oil spill was over, and it's allegedly cleaned up, and we need to remain focused on the science and what it tells us about restoring the Gulf."

The state has announced it's ready to spend $100 million on projects paid for by an agreement with BP, but White says there's no comprehensive restoration plan put in place to make sure the money goes where it's most needed