BP oil and tar that washed ashore or was uncovered in Plaquemines, Jefferson, St. Bernard and other Louisiana parishes during Hurricane Isaac is settling into wetlands and shutting some public beaches.
BP's intent all along has been to bury the oil underwater and keep it out of sight. Some biologists agree that keeping it underwater and out of the marshes is best. But many fishermen think once it gets on the bottom, it can't be retrieved.
The big question remains. All of those 200 million gallons did not vanish. How much oil is buried in beach sands, embedded in marshes, is still dispersed in the water column or is lying on the sea floor?
I know I sound like a broken record, but there is simply no end in sight to the overall media clampdown in the Gulf. It is enforced by BP, with the assistance of local law enforcement officials and the approval of the Federal government.
A month ago, Thad Allen issued an order granting the media "uninhibited access" to the areas affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Thirty days later, it should be said that the order essentially has no real-world meaning at all.
Did my July 3 post inadvertently provide a bully pulpit for BP and Coast Guard propaganda? As it turns out, there is plenty of room for concern regarding this apparent marriage of public relations and a government agency.
One of the most important issues facing coastal residents is air quality. Journalists have a responsibility to examine the science and the public has a responsibility to learn more about their environment.