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Case Studies
Water Management Associations
10 Years Later: Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill
On April 20, 2010 the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, located about 41 miles southeast of the Louisiana coast exploded. The explosion and subsequent fire resulted in the sinking of the drilling rig and the deaths of 11 workers. The same blowout that caused the explosion also caused an oil well fire and a massive offshore oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Over 200 million gallons of crude oil was pumped into the Gulf of Mexico, affecting over 16,000 miles of shoreline in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.

Researchers at University of South Florida College of Marine Sciences studied the impact the explosion and ensuing oil spill continue to have on gulf fisheries. They found a 50 – 80% fish population decrease near the blow site. And, of the more than 2,500 fish sampled, every single one was found to have some level of oil pollution; the highest levels of concentrations were detected in yellowfin tuna, golden tilefish and red drum.

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