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For Immediate Release, Aug. 4, 2010

Contact: Kierán Suckling, (520) 275-5960

Statement of Center for Biological Diversity's Executive Director Kierán Suckling on
Government Estimates of Remaining Oil in the Gulf of Mexico

TUCSON, Ariz.— Kierán Suckling, executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity, issued the following statement today responding to the federal government’s report that up to 75 percent of the oil from the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico has been captured, burned, broken down or evaporated:

“The overly rosy tone of today’s report may leave the false impression that this crisis is somehow nearing an end. But much of the oil that the government refers to has simply been broken apart and remains in the ecosystem. It’s like taking separated salad dressing and shaking up the bottle so the oil and vinegar mix. You may not be able to see the oil, but it’s there.

“That unseen oil, though, is what will foul the Gulf for years, eating away at the basic elements of the food chain that are the building blocks for fisheries, birds, sea turtles and mammal populations.

 “The harsh reality is that even if you accept today’s estimate, that means there are  still more than 1 million barrels of oil in the ocean and along the shoreline – nearly five times the size of the Exxon Valdez spill that’s still impacting ecosystems in Alaska.

 “No matter what the spin, there’s no denying the devastating long-term effects of the Gulf oil spill. Rather than down-playing the historic magnitude of this spill, the government ought to be working aggressively to tally its true costs – both to wildlife and people of the Gulf – and hold BP accountable for every drop.”

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