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Communications > Sustainability Plus > Posts > Perspectives on the Gulf Oil Spill One Year Later

LaDon_001The Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and resulting oil spill were a human-made disaster of a scope never seen before. While the well has been capped for months and oil is no longer spilling into the Gulf of Mexico, the effects of the disaster continue to be felt in Alabama and other Gulf Coast states.

Dr. LaDon Swann, director of the Auburn University Marine Extension and Research Center, sat down recently to record some of his thoughts and impressions on the current situation and the role of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System as well as what the future may hold.

Dr. Swann, who is also the director of the Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium, says many Alabama coastal businesses are at an economic crossroads. The challenges these businesses face are twofold, he says. First, they need adequate monetary settlements from BP, and second, they need for consumer sentiment to improve about seafood and coastal tourism.

Watch his comments here.

Swann calls the spill unprecedented and that long-term effects on the environment, the economy and on citizens are hard to gauge. He notes that while research funding is available for some environmental issues, less money has been made available to study the human impacts.

Watch his comments here.

Extension is continuing its efforts to help residents of the Gulf Coast deal with the challenges they are facing as a result of the spill. Swann says one emphasis is ensuring that citizens get the most balanced and credible information available.

Watch his comments here.