BP’s Oil Leak/Spill In The Gulf of Mexico

The good – Maybe citizens will finally wake up

The bad – Our government & corporations really don’t care about the environment

The ugly – Incompetence & corruption is the status quo


I was an Environmental Manager for a large worldwide corporation based in the U.S. The opinions expressed in this blog post are based on my 16 years’ experience as an environmental professional, and 50+ years of life experience as an American citizen.

The Largest Environmental Disaster In History
Yep, I do believe that BP’s oil leak/spill in the Gulf of Mexico is indeed the winner. BP is low-balling their estimates of the quantity of oil that is escaping into the Gulf. The government is allowing BP to control the flow of information. We will probably never know the whole truth. In fact, I believe you can bank on it.

Politicians Only Care About Getting Elected (Or Re-elected)
I’m not sure there are any politicians who want to serve anything other than their OWN needs. They certainly don’t seem to care about the needs of their constituents. They’re only concerned with appeasing those who can make large contributions to their re-election campaigns, line their pockets and provide other perks, and persuade people to vote for them.

Politicians Pass Laws That Have No Teeth
They make it sound like their laws will solve problems. Ha! Most of the laws they pass only provide the illusion of doing something productive. Rarely do these laws provide the budgets necessary for full implementation and enforcement. There are often gaping loopholes that provide ways to sidestep the laws.

It’s All Just Window Dressing To Fool Voters
Yep, politicians talk a good game, and make it all sound good. But they lie through their teeth and deceive the public. Few citizens actually care enough to do the research necessary to separate the wheat from the chaff. This is sad, and explains part of the reason why things not only haven’t improved, but have instead been in a steady state of decline.

Politicians Only Talk About The Environment To Get Elected
They like to talk about the environment—it gets them on the news, and makes them look like they care. But check their voting records. They really don’t care enough to pass strict environmental regulations. Additionally, they never provide enough funding in their budgets for the E.P.A. to enforce the environmental regulations strictly.

The E.P.A Leaves It Up To Corporations To Police Themselves
This is mostly because the E.P.A. doesn’t have the budget to enforce the environmental regulations properly, but also because it makes it easier on corporations. This is a HUGE mistake. One only has to look at the BP oil leak/spill in the Gulf of Mexico to see that this doesn’t work.

Corporations Don’t Care About The Environment
Like politicians, they talk about the environment, but aren’t willing to do much (spend money) to protect it. Complying with environmental regulations costs money—HUGE amounts of money. That eats into profit margins. When corporations establish their operating budgets, guess what gets the least amount of consideration. Yep, environmental compliance.

Corporations Will Find A Fall Guy When The CEO Is To Blame
Corporate policy and behavior flows from the top down. The CEO establishes the culture of the entire organization. The buck stops at the CEO’s desk. Others down the chain of command can’t do anything unless the CEO ultimately approves. So when the budget doesn’t allow for the personnel and expenditures necessary for full compliance with environmental regulations, it’s ultimately the CEO’s fault. When the corporate culture encourages and rewards sweeping non-compliance under the rug, the CEO is to blame.

The U.S. Government Should Come Down Hard On BP
But you know they won’t. BP is the fourth largest corporation in the world. Our government won’t do anything that might upset them. In fact, our government will negotiate with BP to reach an agreement concerning what BP feels would be an acceptable enforcement action and penalty. That’s just the way our government operates when dealing with high-profile criminals.


One Response to “BP’s Oil Leak/Spill In The Gulf of Mexico”

  1. Dave Says:

    Jeff – even when they do ‘police’ the sites they just ghost write it as they have been there. That was part of the problem here – they said they inspected it and never did. heads should roll but you know what? Not a single one will. I wish I could perform my job this half-assedly (is that a word?) and keep it. The only other time I’ve used this line was for the weather man missing the obvious.