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The Exxon Valdez (by Tom Pawlicki)


The Exxon Valdez was a shipping container carrying 53million gallons of crude oil. The captain of the ship saw that the normal shipping lane was blocked by heavy ice. So he ordered the ship to head out of the shipping lane in order to avoid the dangerous ice. Unfortunately they forgot to avoid the just as dangerous Bligh Reef. On March 24, 1989 the Exxon Valdez ran a ground causing 10million gallons of crude oil to spill into Prince Edward Bay.

exxon_valdez.jpg
The Exxon Valdez sourrounded by :booms" to help contain the oil

The oil was then spread through out the bay. A storm then brewed and 70mph winds blew the oil out of the bay causing the oil to impact an estimated 1,100miles of coast line and impacting 11,000 square miles of oceanic water.

The impact on the local ecosystem was also enormous. With beaches and water full of oil many animals couldn’t survive. 35,000 bids and 1,000 otter carcasses were discovered, and this is considered to be only a small part of the dead animals because dead animals sink.

Over all the loss of marine life was huge and initial recovery took $2.1billion and 3 years, but this disaster led to the awareness of environmental protection and conservation.

Bibliography

http://www.eoearth.org/article/exxon_valdez_oil_spill

http://www.evostc.state.ak.us/facts/qanda.cfm