Now there's a piece in Mother Jones about the Deepwater Horizon disaster nine years ago and how Corexit still afflicts those clean up crews. Journalist, Rocky Kistner, was there nine years ago.
I can remember riding offshore with local fishermen and seeing their expressions turn from curiosity to fear as we found the thick, nauseating slicks floating toward shore. They realized their livelihoods would be turned upside down by the powerful explosion. It was America’s greatest oil spill disaster, a catastrophe that left a tarry trail of toxic oil and dead marine life across four states. And for many people who live in the region, the calamity is still not over.
...We know far more about the dispersants now than we did in 2010. At the time, very little effectiveness and safety testing had been conducted on the oil cleanup chemicals. Reports circulated that Corexit was as safe as Dawn dish soap and that its ingredients, initially kept secret by the manufacturer, Nalco Holdings, were also found in ice-cream and toothpaste. “We believe Corexit 9500 is very safe,” a Nalco chemist insisted after the blowout happened. BP agreed. It even bought a third of the global Corexit supply at the time.
But experts knew dispersants contained toxic ingredients. EPA regulators grew concerned that the Corexit spray might put first responders and residents at risk. The agency ordered BP to switch to a less toxic dispersant early in the spill, but BP resisted, saying the chemicals were an effective way to fight the growing oil disaster. EPA ultimately backed down as more oil poured ashore, a conclusion that then EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson called one of the “toughest decisions” she ever made.
...Today, the science on the health effects of dispersants is catching up. A 2013 study found that Corexit made oil 52-times more toxic to certain marine life. In 2017, a landmark National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences study of tens of thousands of oil cleanup workers found that those exposed to dispersants had increased risks of symptoms like coughing, wheezing, and burning eyes and lungs. A 2018 Johns Hopkins study found that oil dispersants increased the concentration of ultrafine particles, which can travel miles through the air and penetrate human lungs. And last year a Coast Guard study, based on self-reporting from 4,800 service personnel, found a relationship between increased exposure to dispersants and the likelihood of symptoms including coughing and shortness of breath. “There’s clearly something going on with acute symptoms,” says Jennifer Rusiecki, an epidemiologist who’s been studying data from sickened Coast Guard personnel. “The longer-term effects we don’t know yet.”Petro-states are notorious dissemblers. They lie. It's in their nature, part of their political DNA. It doesn't make much difference whether it's Stephen Harper or Justin Trudeau at the wheel.
In case you haven't seen it, here's the original expose from Vice that aired in February, 2015. Watch it and then tell me why I or, for that matter, anyone should find this acceptable.