Gulf Oil Spill Photographs Show Man’s Influence On Environment
Originally published at the Huffington Post. Read original article here.
The fragile state of our environment has been a continuous thread throughout my work. For this series of photographs, I spent two months in the Gulf on assignment for Greenpeace photographing the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. These photographs explore the tenseness of the situation in the Gulf of Mexico as the oil seeps into an already challenged and complex ocean ecosystem. Though tragic, it is a fitting example of the vast scale of transformation our world is under from man-made stresses.
In 2010, approximately 4.9 million barrels of crude oil spilled from the Deepwater Horizon wellhead into the Gulf of Mexico over the course of three months. BP, leaser of the Deepwater Horizon, and the U.S. government tried a litany of mitigation techniques to stem the spread of the spill — corexit, controlled burns, booms around vulnerable wetlands, skimming — but the scale and geographical scope of the spill made those efforts much more akin to the cleaning of an Olympic pool full of oil with a box of q-tips. More than a year after its conclusion, collateral damage from the spill is still being tallied; the full extent of it will likely never be known.
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All images and captions courtesy of Daniel Beltrá.