Unprecedented use of dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico – a ‘draconian experiment’ making people sick

Air force C-130 airplane spraying chemical dis...

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From Shrimpers, Enviros to sue for dispersant info

“Unprecedented use of toxic dispersants during the BP Deepwater Horizon Disaster without prior scientific study and evaluation on the effect to Gulf of Mexico marine ecosystems and human health was a horrific mistake that should never have been allowed to happen.” – Clint Guidry of the Louisiana Shrimp Association.

UPDATE: Containers of the extremely toxic version of COREXIT FOUND at Lamar Dixon Expo Center in Gonzales, LA. November 27 (ship date on containers is 8/10): http://bit.ly/dHh5zB

Dr. Riki Ott “The intentional release of dispersants was done without adequate scientific knowledge of impacts to the deep sea, open ocean, and coastal environments – or to people living or recreating at the coast. Thus, the release was the largest chemical experiment in history on a civilian population without their knowledge or consent – and the government was complicit in this draconian experiment.”

Dahr Jamail on the growing number of toxic illnesses linked to Corexit along the Gulf coast

Hugh Kaufman, Senior Policy Analyst with the EPA, warns EPA & NOAA intentionally covering-up the toxic dangers of Corexit

 Florida Oil Spill LawDr. Soto says he’s seeing more patients who are testing positive for toxic agents associated with the oil spill in excess of the 95th percentile. If they’re spreading beyond the shoreline, could we all be at risk?  “We’re not talking about short term effects of irritation in the airways, headaches, or rashes people have been experiencing from symptoms that we get calls here in the office for. I’m more concerned about the long term health effects. Nobody talks about it, nobody’s even thinking of that 5,10,15, 20 years from now that we’re going to see – cancer”.


Source On March 7, 2011, Lisa Nelson passed away from the mysterious illness brought on byBP’s toxic brew in the Gulf.  Jerry Cope, who interviewed her in the above video, posted a message on his Facebook page in response to Lisa Nelson’s death.  It reads, “I am very very saddened to report that Lisa Nelson just passed away.   My heart is heavy for the loss of a beautiful person who was unfortunate enough to be betrayed by her country and the government officials sworn to protect us all.

God bless Lisa Nelson.”

Robin Young lives and works in Orange Beach, Alabama…one of the prettiest places on earth, she says. But after the BP oil spill in the Gulf, things quickly turned dark. Robin began feeling sick. Analysis showed she had several chemicals – chemicals related to the dispersant used to clean up the spill — in her system.

Listen to the interview HERE

Catfish Miller tells his story :

BP’s “VOO”, or “Vehicles of Opportunity” program put fishermen and their boats back to work cleaning up the oil. They were not allowed to use respirators.  Here is what the feds had to say about that:


Oil cleanup workers are exposing the fact that BP is NOT cleaning up oil, but covering it up, while laying off clean-up workers left and right. (See this news story from November 12.)  On land, oiled sand is covered with new sand during the night.  In the water, oil is hit with dispersant in covert operations. (See Evidence Mounts of BP Spraying Toxic Dispersants)

James “Catfish” Miller, fisherman turned whistleblower – Uncovering the lies that are sinking the oil

Echoing what VOO employees across the Gulf Coast are saying, [a VOO worker] told Truthout his crew would regularly find oil, report it, be sent away, then either watch as planes or Carolina Skiffs would arrive to apply dispersants, or come back the next day to find the white foamy emulsified oil remnant (pictured) that is left on the surface after oil has been hit with dispersants…

Dispersants washing up - Long Beach, MS. Image from Denise Rednours YouTube video. Click on image to watch.

“Just the other day one of the Carolina Skiffs passed us spraying something,” he said, “We went west instead of east as we turned and a group of Carolina Skiffs was spraying something over the water.”

A Carolina Skiff is a type of boat, usually between 13’ and 30’ long, very versatile, and can function well in shallow or deep waters. They are known for having a large payload capacity and a lot of interior space.

Alarmed by what he saw, the former VOO worker called the Coast Guard to report what he believed was a private contractor company spraying dispersants.

“We were later told by the Coast Guard they’d investigated the incident and told us what we saw were vacuum boats sucking oil, and they were rinsing their tanks,” he said, “But we know this is a lie, and that BP is using these out of state contractors to come in and spray the dispersant at night, and they are using planes to drop it as well.”

He worked in the VOO program looking for oil. When his team would find oil, upon reporting it, they would consistently be sent away without explanation or the opportunity to clean it.

“They made us abort these missions,” he said, “Two days ago I put out boom in a bunch of oil for five minutes, they told me to abort the mission, so I pulled up boom soaked in oil. What the hell are we doing out there if they won’t let us work to clean up the oil?”

He told Truthout that as his and other VOO teams would be going out to work on the water in the morning, they would pass the out of state contractors in Carolina Skiffs coming in from what he believed to be a covert spraying of the oil with dispersant in order to sink it. He believes this was done to deliberately prevent the VOO teams from finding and collecting oil. By doing so BP’s liability would be lessened since the oil giant will be fined for the amount of oil collected.


Commercial fisherman James “Catfish” Miller, took fishermen Danny Ross Jr. and Mark Stewart, along with scientist Dr. Ed Cake of Gulf Environmental Associates, and others out and they found the fishing grounds to be contaminated with oil and dispersants.



James “Catfish” Miller, Mississippi commercial fisherman, turned whistleblower. (Photo by Erika Blumenfeld © 2010)

While acting as whistleblowers, Miller and Stewart have both been accused of being “troublemakers” and “liars” by persons in the Mississippi government, and some of their local media, in spite of the fact that they are doing so from deep concern for their fellow fisherman and the environment.

Meanwhile, both men told Truthout they live with chronic headaches and other symptoms they’ve been experiencing since they were exposed to toxic dispersants while in the VOO program. Recent trips to investigate their waters for oil and dispersant have worsened their symptoms.

“Why would we lie about oil and dispersant in our waters, when our livelihoods depend on our being able to fish here,” Miller asked, “I want this to be cleaned up so we can get back to how we used to live, but it doesn’t make sense for us or anyone else to fish if our waters are toxified. I don’t know why people are angry at us for speaking the truth. We’re not the ones who put the oil in the water.”

Miller is bleak about his assessment about the situation. He pointed out towards the coast and said, “Everything is dead out there. The plankton is dead. We pulled up loads of dead plankton on our trip on Wednesday. There are very few birds. We saw only a few when there are usually thousands. We only saw two porpoises when there are usually countless. We saw nothing but death.”

Read the full article here

More dispersants washing up - Long Beach, MS. Image from Denise Rednours YouTube video. Click on the picture to watch.

From Reflections on BP’s Oil Disaster:
Terry Tempest Williams – “The use of dispersants, above and below, is deeply frightening. The 74 exceptions given in 48 days by the U.S. Coast Guard to BP to continue usage of the dispersant Corexit in the beginning weeks of the blowout, against the judgment of the EPA, is just another example of how our government and corporations are in collusion against the wellbeing of the citizens of this country. Two million gallons of dispersants were used, some of it sprayed over the bayous as residents sat on their porches at night watching the planes fly over them. People are now sick. This is criminal. Who is accountable? If corporations are now viewed as individuals through the Supreme Court ruling “Citizens United v Federal Election Commission,”  then shouldn’t corporations be tried as individuals in our courts of law?

It was also troubling to learn of BP’s “hush money” given to boat captains throughout the Gulf of Mexico under the auspices of their “Vessels of Opportunity” program. A captain of a 20 foot boat could be paid $1200 a day with additional funding for crew members to “go out and look for oil.” In many instances, these boat captains had nothing to do, no orders were given, they drove around in circles. They signed up for the program, registered their boats and in so doing, agreed not to talk to the press or government about what they saw. I talk about this in specific terms in my Orion article with boat captains Lori and Mike DeAngelis.

“The fact that I was taken to the BP Decontamination Unit under the strong arm of a private (TALON) security guard dressed in black was also disconcerting. We were told we were “contaminated” after walking on a public beach on Grand Isle. When I asked what we had been contaminated by, the security guard said he was not at liberty to say. BP Executive Doug Suttles announced on local and national television that morning that all beaches in Louisiana were now open. We took him at his word.

We bypassed the signs that said “Authorized Personnel Only.” We were stopped and then marched half a mile down the “contaminated” beach by the equivalent of a Blackwater thug. I wanted to ask “by whose authority?” But I didn’t. I wanted to see where it would land us. Where it landed us was in two blue kiddie pools with god knows what kind of solution. And they never did tell us what we were contaminated with — Corexit — no doubt.

It should also be noted that many of the people we spoke with had been visited by either agents from Homeland Security or had been contacted by BP personnel themselves, in acts of intimidation. I personally received two calls from the BP public relations crew. How they got my cell phone number remains a mystery.

The number of dead birds, sea mammals, and ecological damage has also been gravely underestimated and underreported by BP and our own government. It is imperative that independent scientists be allowed, encouraged, and funded to do continuing research. It will be years before we know the truth of this ongoing disaster. We are not being told the truth by BP.”

“I would hope this collection of stories in “The Gulf Between Us” will open people’s eyes to the very real fact that this story of the oil spill is not over. There are real people in real places who are suffering as a result of our choices. And there are those beings who have no voice who are suffering: the billion migrating birds flying over the Gulf of Mexico as we speak; the dolphins, the rays, the schools of fish, redfish among them, shrimp, crabs, and oysters. The marshes. The tidal flats. The bottom of the ocean. Life.”

Some information about dispersants

Corexit is still in use, and it is being used near shore.

Corexit 9527 is designated a chronic and acute health hazard by EPA. The 9527 formula contains 2-butoxyethanol, pinpointed as the cause of lingering health problems experienced by cleanup workers after the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, and propylene glycol, a commonly used solvent.New York Times

From the Hazardous Substance Safety Sheet for 2-butoxyethanol:

From the data sheet on Corexit:

(According to the EPA, Bioaccumulation is the process by which the chemical concentration in an aquatic organism achieves a level that exceeds that in the water, as a result of chemical uptake through all possible routes of exposure” ~ so these chemicals move up the food chain and make it into our grocery stores.)

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2 thoughts on “Unprecedented use of dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico – a ‘draconian experiment’ making people sick

  1. Pingback: Riki Ott sobre o petróleo e os químicos usados no Golfo do México « Blog dos WeAreChange Portugal

  2. Thank YOU ALL,
    I am sending to all press all over the world. I have phone numbers of who to call and DEMAND that you get a REAl Person on the Phone.
    US Government HHS 202-690-700
    FEMA 1-800.621-3326
    Institute of Science 202-690-7644
    FTC 877-328-4337
    We have phoned these people repeatedly, on the phone for 3 hours a day. BLAST EM and Everyone who can. I have more that I will post ASAP


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