Volume 89 Issue 15 | p. 3 | Letters
Issue Date: April 11, 2011

Oil Dispersants’ Impact

Department: Letters

I am honestly shocked that some people are surprised that the use of dispersants will have long-term environmental impacts (C&EN, Feb. 7, page 8). I can well remember learning in a graduate marine pollution course in the early 1980s that dispersants create long-term issues. I also recall several articles concerning the Exxon Valdez cleanup which indicate that beaches that were not treated with dispersants are in better shape now than those which were treated.

Why then are we surprised that injecting dispersants at depth will have major long-lasting and even more significant impact? Let us hope that we do learn from this and that Jacqueline Michel (president of Research Planning, a consulting firm) is correct that this information will be used to make informed decisions during future responses.

Steven S. Funck
Etters, Pa.

 
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