The 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico was an environmental accident unlike anything the United States had experienced before. It was the largest offshore spill in American history, killing 11 people and decimating millions of animals of different species. BP, the company responsible for the accident, will pay the U.S. a record-setting $20.8 billion for damages caused by the spill.
Seven years later, those who live near the Gulf say they’re not convinced the area will ever make a full recovery. As a pilot, Dr. Bonny Schumaker still can see the devastation from her low-flying plane, which she uses to take photos for ecological surveys.
William Granger, a lifelong commercial fisherman, says the spill devastated his business. Fearing his family would not have money to pay for groceries, he accepted a small, quick payment from a BP settlement. But the money was not enough to keep him afloat, and he is concerned about how he will continue to make a living.
From natural disasters to national tragedies, the media swarms around major stories, hurling those affected into the spotlight. But what happens after the cameras are gone and the country moves on to the next headline? The Aftermath revisits stories that once dominated the news, investigating where people are now and what has happened since, to tell the story after the story. The Glassbreaker Films initiative at The Center for Investigative Reporting aims to support women in documentary filmmaking and investigative journalism. The project is generously funded by the Helen Gurley Brown Foundation.
For more on The Aftermath series: revealnews.org/theaftermath