PaddyPower.com is cashing in on the recent oil spill disaster by offering gamblers the chance to place bets on environmental and corporate fallout in the wake of the Gulf oil spill.
The Ireland-based bookmaking website, whose "mission is to make 'risk-based entertainment' more accessible and fun," has opened betting on a macabre environmental concern: which endangered species will become the first to perish because of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
Those wagering bets have put Kemp's ridley sea turtle at the head of the running with 4/5 odds of becoming extinct. The Kemp's ridley is considered the most endangered species of sea turtle and its migration patterns take the turtles to the Gulf of Mexico during this time of year. The species made a "fragile recovery" after a 1979 oil spill, but estimates peg the turtle's adult population at just 8,000 individuals.
Other animals on the list include Louisiana's state bird, the brown pelican, bluefin tuna, and the leatherback sea turtle. Sperm whales and Blue whales have 16/1 odds for becoming extinct first against species such as the loggerhead turtle.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Paddy Power said, "We hope this betting will highlight the environmental catastrophe unfolding right now as a result of the BP oil spill. It's a sure bet we'll lose some marine species, the only question is which ones."
In addition to betting on the extinction of entire species, PaddyPower has opened betting on BP's next CEO.
Should the oil giant decide to replace current CEO Tony Hayward, those betting on the company's next leader have placed the best odds on BP regional director Iain Conn.
Last year, PaddyPower began taking bets on the estimated global population of polar bears in 2011. Global warming poses a huge threat to the animals.
For its results, PaddyPower plans to consult the International Union for Conservation of Nature, an environmental organization that tracks the world's most endangered species.
The website's other betting opportunities range from the World Cup to the results of upcoming elections.