This article discusses the impact that the Deep Water Horizon oil disaster is still havaing on the Gulf of Mexico. Nearly a decade after the spill, oxygen-rich by-products don’t seem to be going anywhere. So much for BP’s claims that it has cleaned up its mess.
Sunlight shapes oil spills’ long-term legacies.
In the days and weeks after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, sunlight hit the oil slicks on the surface of the water. That triggered chemical reactions that added oxygen to oil molecules that once were just chains of carbon and hydrogen atoms. These oxygenated hydrocarbons are still sticking around eight years later with little evidence of degradation, researchers report May 29 in Environmental Science and Technology.