The BP oil disaster continues to ravage the Gulf coast. But efforts to control the spill are wreaking their own havoc on the Gulf's wildlife.
Many of these animals are drowned, poisoned or burned before they can be counted. While there are counts of captured and collected animals, there is no official public record of the number of animals killed or injured by the slick itself and the recovery efforts.
Take Action: Tell Admiral Thad Allen, Unified Command and federal agencies observe and publicly report impact on wildlife, and coordinate rescue interventions for animals caught in the fray.
Dear [Decision Maker],
In response to concerns that wildlife, including sea turtles and other protected marine species, may be victims of sea surface oil burns, skimming and other oil containment techniques, we call on Unified Command and federal agencies to:
-- Place qualified third party wildlife observers on "Vessels of Opportunity" responding to the BP oil disaster;
-- Publicly report all wildlife observations in the oil impact areas;
-- Postpone burns when protected species are present to allow for appropriate intervention and immediately implement measures to eliminate avoidable harm to all protected species; and
-- Coordinate wildlife rescue interventions when necessary.
This applies to all open water response operations conducting burning, skimming, vacuuming, chemical dispersant application and any other techniques used to collect, capture, or disperse oil.
Observation data of oil-exposed wildlife should be made publicly available and included in the official daily wildlife casualty reports that currently only report captured and collected wildlife.