October 12, 2011
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A marks the location of Papamoa Beach in the Bay of Plenty.
Environment Minister, Nick Smith, called the spill New Zealand's 'worst environmental disaster', with oil imperiling around 62 miles (100 kilometers) of the coastline.
Many have criticized the government for a delayed and lackluster response to the disaster. But Prime Minister, John Key, responded saying, "Show me how you'd go faster? Show me how you'd do anything different?"
The little blue penguin (Eudyptula minor), also known as the fairy penguin, is the world's smallest penguin. Photo by: Noodle snacks.
"Forest & Bird believes the Rena disaster raises serious questions about our preparedness for an oil spill anywhere in our waters," said Forest & Bird advocacy manager Kevin Hackwell. "In light of this disaster, the government needs to urgently rethink its plans to expand offshore oil and gas drilling."
Local residents defied warnings by authorities about the toxic nature of the oil and began cleaning Papamoa Beach without proper equipment. According to reports, big clumps of oil covered the beach. Residents fear the oil will hamper tourism and fisheries in the area.
"The damage to the Bay of Plenty's coastal environment will be long lasting and it will be a long time before the area loved by so many New Zealanders is restored to the way it was. The ongoing financial and environmental costs will be a bitter but important lesson for us all," Hackwell added.
Shell spills over 50,000 gallons of oil off Scotland
(08/16/2011) Yesterday, Royal Dutch Shell estimated that to date 54,600 gallons of oil had spilled into the North Sea off the east coast of Scotland, spreading some 19 miles wide (30 kilometers) at its maximum. While the company stopped the initial leak on Thursday, it has now announced that the oil has found a 'second pathway' and is still leaking into the sea around 84 gallons a day.
Arctic open for exploitation: Obama administration grants Shell approval to drill
(08/08/2011) Less than a year and a half after the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the Obama administration has bucked warnings from environmentalists to grant preliminary approval to oil giant, Royal Dutch Shell, to drill off the Arctic coast. Exploratory drilling will occur just north of the western edge of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) in the Beaufort Sea, home to bowhead and beluga whales, seals, walruses, polar bears, and a wide variety of migrating birds.
Oil horror in Nigeria: 30 years, one billion dollars to clean-up
(08/08/2011) Fifty years of oil spills in Nigeria's now infamous Ogoniland region will take up to three decades and over a billion dollars ($1 billion for just the first five years) to restore environments to healthy conditions, according to a new independent report by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). The most thorough study to date has found that widespread pollution has hit the Niger Delta even harder than assumed with devastating impacts on fishing grounds and community health. Last week Shell, one of the biggest operators in Nigeria, admitted to two massive oil spills in 2008 totaling 11 million gallons of crude.