Is BP's remedy for the spill only making it worse?

Ken Salazar, Secretary of Interior
Ken Salazar, Secretary of Interior

The chemical dispersants BP is dumping in the Gulf of Mexico are a cosmetic solution only. And they’re toxic.
By Joseph Romm.
Salon Magazine.


U.S. exempted BP’s Gulf of Mexico drilling from environmental impact study. By Juliet Eilperin. Washington Post Staff Writer.

The Department of Interior did not require an environmental impact statement on the lease at Deepwater Horizon. Only a CE (categorical exclusion) was done. This is the kind of analysis, or rather lack of it, done for constructing short fences, or repairing a government campground.

The CE was issued on April 6, 2009.


  1. Salle Avatar

    “The Department of Interior did not require an environmental impact statement on the lease at Deepwater Horizon. Only a CE (categorical exclusion) was done. This is the kind of analysis, or rather lack of it, done for constructing short fences, or repairing a government campground.”

    …or landing helicopters in a wilderness area to supposedly collar wolves…

    I heard on a news show, last night, how Salazar is a big oil “drill baby…” himself and made things worse upon his appointment to his current post… according to Kieran Suckling. I have to agree with his take on the oil/MMS aspect as well as all the other issues Salazar is ill suited to administer on our behalf and as we have been watching in horror.

  2. Virginia Avatar

    Obama must get rid of Salazar over this travesty. I saw the same interview with Kieran Suckling from Center for Biological Diversity. He called for Salazar to step down over this. Have they no shame?!

  3. jdubya Avatar

    I have been watching Salazar on TV and I am wondering if this is a watershed event for him. Now I agree, as a sec of the interior, he has been a big disappointment, if not disgrace. But he almost looks chastened by the magnitude of this mess, the inability of BP and the gov’t to have any control over it (for now at least) and the potential for huge environmental harm. Maybe this will be his Lazarus moment and he will come out of it a real environmentalist. Maybe….

  4. Ken Cole Avatar

    WWP came to a settlement over the use of Categorical Exclusions for grazing permit renewals on BLM allotments last year. Even an allotment with fewer than 100 cattle has to have an Environmental Assessment which is more intensive than a Categorical Exclusion. The use of CE for this and any other well is CRIMINAL. Salazar should step down immediately.

  5. Virginia Avatar

    The emperor has no clothes!

  6. Kropotkin Man Avatar
    Kropotkin Man

    In the last 10-15 years the NEPA process has been circumvented with the use of “programmatics” and CE’s. A programmatic is a blanket-like document that is used to cover numerous projects and expedite (circumvent) the NEPA process. All in the name of smaller government.

    Age old EISs and Management Plans are tagged onto with new projects as well.

    The public and environmental groups have been slow to catch on to these tricks. Industry loves them.

    Of course having industry select and pay for a contractor to write the EIS is a good trick as well.

    Perhaps with this disaster things will change.

    Always hopeful!

  7. Brian Ertz Avatar

    fire industry-puppet Ken Salazar …


  8. jdubya Avatar

    If Obama fires Salazar within the next 6 months (based upon the conditions so far) it means that Obama accepts responsibility of this mess. Why should he do that? These wells, leases and drilling plans were done on the Bush/Cheney watch, not his. So why should Obama take the political hit?

    Alternatively, he may decide to can Salazar but he would wait until this mess dies down (and the American public’s political memory is measured in hours not years) and then fire him for something seemingly trivial and insignificant.

    1. Ken Cole Avatar

      There are lots of reasons to fire him, not just this.

    2. IzabelaM Avatar

      Salazar needs to go. He is not helping any of wildlife or environemntal causes. He is just the same rancher as we have issues with over distroying our lands and willdlife. I was very upset and sent tons of e-mails and even called President Obama’s staffers before and after announcement of Salazar. I am very upset with Mr. O. and his NO support for environmental and wildlfie issues.

  9. kt Avatar

    I don’t think that is Salazar looking chastened. Maybe overwhelmed.

    A small, narrow puppet of industry in a position that all of a sudden takes some smarts – and not just complacency with Industry.

  10. jdubya Avatar

    I agree Ken Cole, but Obama can’t fire him for the time being no matter what the reason unless he wants to take primary responsibility for this mess. That ain’t gonna happen.

  11. cc Avatar

    A very good editorial on the oil spill by the director of Cornell’s Lab of Ornithology:


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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Ralph Maughan