Environmental Consequences of Oil Spills

The Earth is a phenomenal place. It is filled with beauty of all kinds such as the greens and water. Unfortunately, because the earth is so pretty, people think it is invencible and don’t recognize the way they hurt it. For example, car pollution, deforestation, global warming, hunting, water pollution, but most of all, oil spill. Oil Spill is a common thing to happen in the world, especially in the ocean. Oil Spill is when liquid petroleum is released into the environment, most likely in the ocean, because of human activities. Most of the oil spills are due by accidents. The accidents can be caused by object being broken down, natural disasters, or purposely hateful acts against the environment with objects such as tankers, pipelines, refineries, drilling rigs, or storage facilities. These mistakes, or acts, can cause so much harm to the Earth’s environment.

Oil spills can be harmful to the environment because it can affect plants and animals. The chemicals that the oil carries are poisonous and is able to harm life on earth. The oil affects organisms both internally and externally by eating it, or breathing it in. Oil can coat fur and feathers, meaning it reduces the mammal to lose its body temperature. The life most affected by the oil is the marine life, especially the ones that get closer to shore, they are the ones who have a higher exposure to oil. When oil spill happens, seabirds are killed in greater numbers than any other specie that comes in contact with the oil. The otters also take a greater risk because their body heat depends on their fur. If the fur of the otter is covered by oil, than the fur will be harmed and thus takes away the heat from the otter. Other animals and plants close to the shore are hurt, but there are ways to prevent oil spills from occuring.

Actions are taking place in order to prevent oil spills from recurring and affecting the environment. Dispersants are being used in order to clean up spills. Dispersants are chemically similar to soap, or detergents, that breaks oil into small droplets. It does not remove all the spill, but it provides protection for marine habitats that are threatened. The population could also prevent oil spills by having oil tanks cleaned, replace old tanks, installing oil safety values, or inspecting pipes and supply lines. These are few ways that the people can help prevent accidental oil spills from recurring in the long run.

There are different ways to clean up oil spills from the environment. Boom and Skimmers are another method of cleaning up oil spills besides Dispersants. This is a technique where the boom is set as a barrier around the oil and they use a boat, or vacuum machines to suck up the oil from the environment. Another way to deal with it is by leaving the oil alone. It is said that oil can be dispersed by itself, but many scientist still argue over this myth. Oil spills is a factor that is destroying the earth by affecting the species, plants, and contaminating waters. Oil spills can be prevented and dealt with as well, but should be avoided because it is quite dangerous for living things, especially in the marine life.

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