The 7 Most Truth Telling Visuals of the Gulf Oil Spill


— Awe-inspiring videos and photos collection of the disaster!

The Gulf oil spill has wreaked incredible damage on the environment and local communities. The veracity of these images will tell you the whole story.

1. Estimated Number of Gallons of Oil Leaked to Date

gallons of oil leaked

We are hard-pressed to determine exactly how many gallons of oil are being spilled into the Gulf of Mexico every single day, with estimates ranging from 1.5 million gallons to 4.1 million gallons daily.

Use the “Adjust Leak Rate” slider on this NBC Disaster in the Gulf interactive map to see the estimated number of gallons leaked to date and you’ll be frightened by the sheer size of the spill.

2. No Media Access to BP Oil Spill


Perhaps what’s scarier than the number of gallons of oil spilled in the Gulf is the fact that media are having a hard time getting access to the spill area.

Though BP denies that, they are preventing reporters from talking to workers and taking pictures or filming the area, as this WDSU report shows, that’s simply not true.

How are we to know how serious the problem is without accurate reporting?

3. Underwater Oil-Soaked Sand

Oil Underneath

As reported in this CBS News Video, fishermen are starting to find oil-soaked sand on their shores due to the Gulf Oil Spill.

This is a terrifying prospect to those who depend on fishing for their livelihood, since the oily sand will have a serious impact on the food supply for seafood like shrimp and crab.

Toxicologists say this hidden oil will seriously threaten marine life in the area, and the jobs of fisherman, too

4. Future Dead Birds

Oil Spill Impacting Ecology

(Photo by

This is a dead bird according to scientists! Although now living, it will eventually die, either from toxic contamination or from starvation.

As temperatures rise in the Gulf, many oil-soaked animals will be literally cooked alive as the oil heats to lethal temperatures. This heartbreaking story is unfolding for thousands of birds.

5. Oil-Soaked Activists

cleanup volunteers

(Photo by Greenpeace USA 2010)

Many volunteers have flocked to the Gulf to try to help with the cleanup. Their efforts are crucial to helping individual animals as well as cleaning beaches, but the black stain of oil on their gear is nonetheless shocking.

This image shows Joao Talocchi holding an oil-covered oyster.

6. Online Maps Show The Closed Fisheries And Open Beaches

closed fisheries open beaches

As reported by Planet 100, this new Gulf Coast Spill Coalition map which combines four data sources – independent boat owners, NOAA and university run Gulf Coast Ocean Observing System – shows a strange discrepancy between recreational sections of beach that have been kept open despite oil washing ashore, and areas where fishing has been banned.

Frightening thought that it’s safe to swim where it’s not safe to fish.

7. Time-Lapsed Images From NASA Showing Size Of The Gulf Oil Spill

Oil Spill image from NASA

If you want to get a clear picture of how far-reaching the spill has become in only a few short weeks, watch this time-elapsed video from NASA that shows images taken from the MODIS instrument aboard two of their satellites over a period of 6 weeks or so.

You’ll not only see the size of the oil spill as it takes over the region, but you’ll see how volatile the flow of oil is as the weather patterns change.

It’s a scary visualization of just how difficult it is to contain a spill like this.


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