27 October 2010

BP sued by conservation groups over gulf disaster

Three conservation groups have filed a civil suit against BP under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), saying that the oil giant is responsible for the harming and killing of endangered species after the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded in April this year.

The action, brought by the Defenders of Wildlife, Gulf Restoration Network and the Save the Manatee Club, is asking that the court orders BP to decrease the ongoing harm to the endangered or threatened wildlife in the Gulf region, including sea turtles, whales, birds and manatees.

"The harmful effects of the BP oil well blowout on endangered and threatened wildlife will continue for many years," said Gregory Buppert, attorney for Defenders of Wildlife."Through this lawsuit, we ask the court to compel BP to provide the resources necessary to ensure Imperiled species in the Gulf recover from this disaster."

"Restitution for the harm done by BP to sensitive wildlife and their habitat will help protect the Gulf ecosystem and rich web of life upon which so many depend," said Catherine Wannamaker, senior attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center. From nesting birds on Gulf beaches to turtles and sperm whales in offshore waters, an entire ecosystem is damaged and BP must be forced to take steps to restore the Gulf's health for current and future generations."

During the President's National Oil Spill Commission last month, it was revealed that more than 50% of the total oil discharge still remains in the Gulf ecosystem which is expected to impact the area for generations to come.

Bev Hahler | @redhotvegan
Bev, a vegetarian since she was 14 years old, became more interested in veganism several years ago after studying Agro-business as part of an Ecology degree. Follow Bev on her blog and Facebook.

Photo credit: cc: flickr.com/photos/pgordon