On April 20, 2010, a British Petroleum (BP) offshore oil rig exploded, killing 11 workers on the rig and spilling tens of thousands of barrels of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico.
BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil well, located 1.5km below the ocean’s surface, leaked 5 million barrels (780 million litres) of crude oil into Gulf Coast, with devastating consequences for Gulf Coast communities and the fragile wetlands, bayous, and coastal waters on which they depend. The spill, which was estimated to be more than 210km long and 110km wide, has impacted the coastlines of Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida. The release of crude oil from BP’s leaking continues to threaten hundreds of species in the Gulf of Mexico, including critical habitat for endangered species, such as whales, sea turtles, and migratory birds.
BP now plans to drill for oil and gas in the Great Australian Bight in the summer of 2015/16.
80-90% of oil well blowouts occur during this exploartory drilling phase.
Due to increasing public concern, there has been a group formed under the name Clean Bight Alliance Australia (CBAA). We are calling on BP to release their environmental plans in full and their oil spill modelling data. This information outlines the potential risks if an accident were to occur. We believe the communities living on the Eyre and Yorke Peninsula’s deserve to know exactly what the consequences of this drilling could be, and as a result of this, be allowed to decide for themselves whether this project continues.
We want to protect the multitude of marine species, livelihoods of people along the coast, and our beautiful pristine coastline.
Lack of disclosure by BP means we don't know exactly where drilling will commence or how this will affect local wildlife and the coastline. What we do know is that this area is rich in marine life.
The Great Australian Bight has been described as having one of the largest marine bio diversities in the world with up to 90% of species being unique to the region. The area is crucial to the vulnerable Southern Right Whale, endangered Humpback Whale, endangered Blue Whale, endangered Sperm Whale, vulnerable Blue Fin Tuna, vulnerable Australian Sea Lion, endangered Loggerhead Turtle, and many many more.
Risk mitigation and good decision making requires solid information not vague assurances. It would be such a devastating tragedy if anything were to happen to this beautiful piece of the world.
In light of the Deepwater Horizon tragedy in 2010, we urge our South Australian politicians and their respective departments to listen to their voters and demand BP release these crucial documents. We believe that Australian's should be able to decide for themselves if the risks are too high. BP cannot be allowed to hide behind unsupported promises when such beautiful pieces of the world are at stake.
Wherever you are located, near or far, Australia or not, we implore you to sign this petition and share it amongst your friends. We need your support, The Great Australian Bight needs your support. Please!
Clean Bight Alliance Australia thanks you for your time and support!
HON. JAY WEATHERILL, PREMIER OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA
HON. IAN HUNTER, MINISTER FOR SUSTAINIBILITY, ENVIRONMENT AND CONSERVATION; WATER AND THE RIVER MURRAY
HON. LEON BIGNELL, MINISTER FOR TOURISM; AGRICULTURE FOOD AND FISHERIES; RECREATION AND SPORT
HON. PETER TRELOAR, STATE MEMBER FOR FLINDERS
We the undersigned call on our elected representatives to seriously consider the future of the Great Australian Bight. If an accident to the scale of the Deepwater Horizon tragedy can occur in the relatively shallow and sheltered waters of the Gulf of Mexico, imagine the risks posed by drilling in the rough, deep seas of the GAB.
We urge the SA government to demand BP release their oil spill modelling data and environmental plans in full before any drilling commences. These documents give local communities the information they deserve and a means to properly assess all risks. BPs assurances are not enough when our livelihoods and marine life are at stake.