Beepy Oil Spill: By The Numbers

Ken AshfordDisasters, Energy and Conservation, Environment & Global Warming & EnergyLeave a Comment

Perspective is everything, and this article puts the oil spill in perspective.  And actually, it makes it sound not so bad.  Some highlights:

  • The Mississippi River pours as much water into the Gulf of Mexico in 38 seconds as the BP oil leak has done in two months.
  • For every gallon of oil that BP's well has gushed into the Gulf of Mexico, there is more than 5 billion gallons of water already in it.
  • The amount of oil spilled so far could only fill the cavernous New Orleans Superdome about one-seventh of the way up.
  • If you put the oil in gallon milk jugs and lined them up, they would stretch about 10,800 miles. That's a roundtrip from the Gulf to London.
  • BP has spent more than $54.8 million lobbying federal officials in Washington since 2000; that's about 44 cents for every gallon of oil it has spilled.
  • Take the 125 million gallons of oil spilled in the Gulf and convert it to gasoline, which is what Americans mostly use it for. That produces 58 million gallons of gas – the amount American drivers burn every three hours and 41 minutes. It's enough to fill up the gas tanks in 3.6 million cars — more than those in Louisiana and Mississippi combined.

But… it's bad.