How People Are Responding To The Oil Spill Is A Good Barometer For The State Of The Nation

That response – along with the condition of this country – is entirely up for grabs right now.

I’m certain the blogging audience has heard about the life threatening damage this latest oil spill from British Petroleum is causing. I’ve been reading reports, sickened by the photos of the harmed animals and watched interviews of those immediately impacted by the millions of gallons of oil spilling into the Gulf.

Depending on where you live in the world “accidents” like this are inevitable when faulty equipment is used and safety precautions  are tested past their breaking point. Nigeria has had this type of damage every year for decades now. Of course companies can only do what governments allow them to get away with.

It will be interesting to see the long-term effects this damage has not just to the local population, but the overall environmental impact on that region and how our food supply will change because of it. I’m of course curious whether the estimated $20B compensation fund will directly assist those who’ve lost businesses and who now have to recover from a diminished quality of life remains to be seen.

I’m thinking of the millions raised to assist the survivors of the Haitian earthquake – and how much of it has yet to positively impact or be directly distributed to alleviate people. Some things just don’t add up! It will up to us to ensure these companies and our elected officials don’t let us down again. For what has happened with BP, happened with Exxon and can happen with any company.

With the current economic downturn we can’t afford to play catch up after the fact, especially when BP has still not managed to cap all of the spilled oil. There are too many people on shaky ground as it is around the world which can lead to other humanitarian crises, violence and other general unrest.

So today, across several cities the TED Conference is hosting a series of of events under the TEDxOilSpill moniker. I’ve put up the widget for the live feed at the end of this post. They’re featuring people who are invested in not only responding to this disaster but in reevaluating the current system. There are a lot of society ills that need to be addressed but our need for clean water and air must take precedence.

 We have to be the change we’re looking for.

Watch live streaming video from tedxoilspillat

7 Replies to “How People Are Responding To The Oil Spill Is A Good Barometer For The State Of The Nation”

  1. A great topic post, and the TED discussion couldn't have been more timely.

    Unfortunately, Americans seem to have a short attention span when it comes to world and national crises, and an unlimited capacity for denial.

  2. We need to get off oil soon and run our cars on electric or other fuels. Everytime something like this happens people start to do new things then they get complacent and quit. Most cities need to improve their public transportation plans and people do you really need 3 or 4 cars in the driveway. I have seen people get in their cars just to drive around the corner and back.

  3. It is hard for me to put into words what a mess this country is turning into, it makes one want to cry. Just when I think my state can't get any worst, it does.

  4. Good choice of posts. As a New Orleanian, I and others have to wonder how much can a people withstand. One would think after Katrina the majority of us would have wised up…not here. At the moment the best thing I can do is complete my degree and move on. The day I receive my degree will be one of the best days of my life. I have tried to convience other 30ish to 50ish bw to return to school and improve themselves. Oh, well! Time will tell and so far time is a itch.

  5. Thanks for this blogpost…Sometimes I wonder if I'm the only one out of 100 who see this grave situation for what it is…No feedback would even be great if knowing our citizens were using this time to prepare, stock up & devise an exit strategy…But alas, I fear no such luck!

    1. CW: I know more about the BET Awards and I purposefully didn't watch than what I know about the damage from the BP catastrophe.

      Ann: As long as you are taking steps to improve your life you can't worry about others who don't make the effort to prepare. This BP disaster won't be the last one to hit us and people could find themselves completely wiped out or permanently displaced with no back up plans.

      I think any stop gap measures that could have stemmed the tide would be rather futile right now, but one can hope I suppose. When I was in the UK & EU I noticed 4 things a) the price of petrol was $8/gal in 2003. It's even more now. b) the cars were all fuel efficient and small c) public transit was fully integrated and accessible d) there were surcharges for driving into the major metropolitan areas during certain times of day to discourage use of cars. Can you imagine if we had a national rail that was fully funded and supported and affordable, reliable public transit?

      Coming&Going: Yup far too many of us are asleep at the wheel or otherwise flailing but information is out there for those who seek it.

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