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Several times a year, Cory Sisco and his wife retreat to Orange Beach, Alabama, to visit Sisco’s family and enjoy the coast. But with the oil disaster hanging over the area, their most recent visit had a different purpose.
Sisco and his wife, Elizabeth, visited the area May 28, just over a month after the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, threatening dozens of coastal communities like Orange Beach. The couple lives in Baltimore, Maryland, and planned to use their vacation time in Orange Beach to volunteer to help relief efforts. At the time, there was not much for them to do, as the oil was still far from shore. But they plan to go back as soon as possible to help with cleanup efforts.
Sisco’s parents keep him updated on the oil disaster each day through phone calls, e-mails and photos, and Sisco has been sharing their updates with CNN iReport. His parents have sent him several photos of the giant booms that are being placed around Orange Beach and nearby Perdido Pass to protect the beaches and close off bays from the oil.
Sisco, who lived in Orange Beach for two years, still talks about the area like it’s home. “It appears that we are permanently blocked, which I guess is a good thing,” he said. “We are so used to seeing our open, beautiful water. Now, you look out there, and you see these things that have never been there before.”
His parents have also expressed concerns that BP cleaning crews are not working hard enough.
They told him about visiting Johnson Beach in Pensacola, Florida, and seeing crews driving up and down the beach in golf carts, not cleaning, during a two-hour span. His parents spoke to a local volunteer who was very upset about the lack of actual cleaning by BP and said he was so frustrated that he “just wanted to get out of there.” The volunteer said he tried to inform BP crew workers of where the oil was, but the company would not listen.
A spokesman for the Deepwater Response Team was not able to comment on this specific incident. He said that most of the cleaning is being done at night because of the extreme heat and that the number of breaks workers are required to take depends on several conditions, such as the weather.
Like most other Gulf residents, Sisco is very concerned about what is happening to the environment and is not sure what to expect.
“It’s a dark hole of uncertainty,” he said. “How long is it going to be before it’s the same?”
Editor's Note: This blog post is part of a series of profiles of Gulf Coast residents and visitors directly affected by the oil disaster. If you'd like to share your story, you can upload photos and videos to CNN iReport.
ARE WE TALKING ABOUT OPRAH HERE????????
Let no one forget that the Conservative voters of the Gulf States have sent a solid block of government-hating, corporation-loving Conservatives to Congress for fifty years. For two generations, those Neanderthals have worked tirelessly to weaken every regulation on corporate behavior. For half a century, they have opposed, blocked, gutted, or subverted every anti-pollution regulation, drilling regulation, workplace safety regulation, reporting regulation, wage regulation, and inspection regulation. They vote to reduce the number of inspectors, reduce research, reduce enforcement, and reduce penalties for corporate misbehavior. Global corporations provide them with bribes, campaign contributions, pretty girls, and really great jobs in case they ever lose an election.
Corporate money is used to finance phony “scientific research” which “proves” that global warming is a myth, that air pollution is caused by cows, that tobacco does not cause cancer, that the “free” market is self-regulating, and that government is incompetent, incapable, evil, and insane by nature. Conservatives in Congress quote these phony findings as if they actually believed them to be true instead of knowing them to be outrageous falsehoods. Only conservative voters are naïve enough to believe that crap.
So welcome to the “free” market, my fellow Americans. Unemployed Southerners are now “free” to move to Arizona and pick crops. In a few years, they will have saved enough to send for their families.
We should put an extra tax on Republican voters and use that money to clean up the Gulf. They are more responsible for this mess than BP. After all, we ALL knew that BP would cheat and cut corners wherever they could, just like every other corporation. Conservatives wink knowingly at corporate corner-cutting and roll their eyes at “tree-hugger” imposed regulations,
We own property 3 blocks from ocean, Last week I observed 11 workers on the beach doing nothing, I was down there reading a book on a neighbors patio (who happens to be ocean side) The workers were there for 3 hours & 20 minutes in boots,gloves and the thin/step in suit that fits over your clothing, they laughed, joked and barely lifted a finger to get much of the oil that was all around them, in little over 3 hrs they still had empty bags and still looking around like they are lost and didnt want to work, I'm not racist by far but did they give all the clean up jobs to blacks??? because they sure as hell are not cleaning the beaches but they can stand around and chat for $12 per hour, I have friends who would volunteer for free to get the oil off our beaches, we have to stay caught up with the oil as it comes ashore or it gets covered by more sand and then its harder to clean, PLEASE SEND HELP AND SUPERVISE THEM.. this is our home, we grew up here....
Our hearts go out to you. Can't imagine the beaches anything other than sugar white. Also, can't bear the thought of the effects on the sea and bird life. We're down south of Sarasota keeping a close watch and seems that it's not if, but when it arrives. Just too much and bet it will begin to pop up in other places far away before too long. Rob~ 1PhotoCity
It's a shame we elect these do-nothing bureaucrats to represent the people and they do NOTHING. Time to push them out of the way & get the job done ourselves. It's time to sucede from the union so we can make it happen. Amen.
ABCDEF54321 for President!
well put abcdef54321,
I wouldn't wish this on anyone. And I hope others are learning from the suffering of all in the Gulf Coast. I've been to a lot of those places and it's devastating to see what BP (and our Gov't) has let happen.
We also own a dream house 3 blocks from the beach near Port Saint Joe on the Gulf. We used to feel proud.
Now owning near the shore always gets a cringe.
I hope this is the time to change national focus on energy sources. Oil is a fixed resource.
ABCDEF54321 could not have said it more eloquently.
The time to act is now, and the person to do it is YOU!
i just ordered an electric car conversion kit, my dad is looking into installing solar power on his roof.
you can do it, and you can do it now.
rise up and act, my friends. the time is NOW! :)!
we can do this!! we are Americans!
This oil leak is devastating. For those who feel that the gulf workers aren't doing anything, I traveled from NC to New Orleans to help with the efforts. I just finished my first week and have logged 90 hours and hundreds of miles working with book, checking areas, and trying to keep the oil from coming inland. There are several dedicated like me who will work until we physically can't to help our gulf residents get through this. AND, for another person's posted comments, I am a very conservative person politically. Don't slam everyone in a group, especially when you do not know what you are talking about. Conservatives can love the environment and want regulations in place for safety as much as anyone else. Trying to cast blame to a group about half the size of America is ludicrous. Can't we stop pointing and start doing!
I think they should find all of the people who chanted "Drill Baby Drill" in 2008 and force them to work the cleanup crews.
Hey abcdef54321 - before you go off on your conservative pro Obama rant - look at the record. The Obama administration signed off on offshore drilling. They had plenty of time to study it since they signed off on it 1 year into their administration. And where are they now??? For political reasons they want to distance themselves from this disaster. They have not taken down and red tape to help the people of these communities. This is the real sin and it is indicative of this current administration. Instead of doing the "right" thing they decide - what will look better at re-election time. Where are the skimmers from rest of world?? Stuck behind red tape that the president of the United States has the power to fix in 5 minutes. AND it simply makes me sick that this disaster is falling farther and farther down on the headline pages of our nations media
Making the regulations strong or weak is not the problem. How about enforcing them, what ever they are. We know the regulators know how to use a computer, especially a browser. Should we turn inspections over to the Coast Guard?
And were is the EPA on air quality?
Who in what agency is protecting us by having BP drilling out so far in the first place?
Is there anyone in this government that knows how to do their job or have they all been appointed?
Can we get our money back?
Thank you all for the comments.
Im not trying to spin anything to the left or the right.
Thank you to all of you that are working hard to clean up my home in the Gulf. Those that are getting paid to and most importantly those that are doing it for free.
I too am a resident of Orange Beach, I was discusted with the few workers that I have seen. I observed the beach last week for about 3 days.... every day there were few workers, and the ones that were there sitting around under the tents. I have pics that look like they are raking overthe sand leaving behind tiny tar pebbles, splattered oil laying on and under rocks at Perdido Key. They were feet from these areas that I noticed tar balls and huge tar patties buried 7-8 inches likely more under the sand. I honestly think that enough is not being done with a sense of urgency that it needs.
Yes, I appreciate the volunteers that are here helping, but I really dont think we have enough effort or quality in the clean up right now.
North Bay ‘News on the Hour Story by Jeff Prue
Troy Hurtubise is a Natural Resources Technologist and an inventor, having graduated from Sir Sandford Fleming College. In his second year of study in 1989, he and all in the environmental college witnessed the Exxon spill her oil in Alaskan waters. Mr. Hurtubise started then with a Professor on an innovation that would hold the proper keys to cleaning up future disasters.
Twenty-one years later, the eccentric inventor, as seen in Paramount Pictures summer comedy, “Dinner for Shmucks”, finally achieved the daunting task, through the innovation known as the ORS (Oil Recovery System) or, Oil Shark, for short.
Mr. Hurtubise’ Oil Shark can recover 126 thousand barrels of surface oil off of the water, as well as return the recycled water back into the ocean at a 98% purification rate. All this, every twenty-four hours, at which time, the Oil Shark is shut down for three hours to have its ‘blanket system’ changed.
Mr. Hurtubise’ problem is getting those that can make a difference to take a closer look at his Oil Shark, which might one day find itself being mandated to every off-shore oil rig, in case a disaster like BP occurs again.
Mr. Hurtubise’ innovation has recently been covered in detail by Canada’s CBC Radio host, Bernie MacKnimay. Mr. Hurtubise believes that through his extensive research and ‘test trials’, in the end, the Oil Shark will clean up the Gulf disaster in under 2 years time: instead of the full generation most experts are predicting using today’s outdated technology. For further info, please email at firstname.lastname@example.org