From the very beginning, it was obvious that the BP oil spill of 2010 was not just another environmental disaster that will blow over in a few months and that no one will feel the effects of except for people involved in cleaning up of the mess. It became obvious that the BP oil spill will become an event with far-reaching and even perhaps global economic and political impact. And it became exactly that. Three years later and the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill is still affecting the livelihoods of thousands, if not millions of people.
First of all, we need to talk about the effects that were felt by the affected states whose various industries suffered immensely. The first type of industry that comes to mind is commercial fishing that has traditionally been a very important part of the economies of Mississippi, Alabama and particularly Louisiana. This part of the US catered for a large portion of the seafood needs of the entire country. Following the BP oil spill, more and more of the Gulf of Mexico had to be closed for fishing, which would ultimately result in more than a third of the Gulf being closed. The worst thing is that even today, there are parts of the Gulf that have to be closed due to the oil reaching these areas and affecting the seafood. In 2012, the fishermen in the areas affected by the Spill claimed that they are not sure that the fishing industry will ever recover. All in all, the effects of the BP oil spill on the fishing industry has been more than devastating.
The same could be said of the tourism industry. Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi have reported significant losses in income in tourism as more and more people started avoiding the area thinking that everything is covered in oil. The media are to blame for this as they have constantly pumped pictures of oil devastated area, thus scaring people away from the areas that needed the money so much. The U.S. travel association has estimated that the impact of the BP oil spill on the tourism industry in the area affected would exceed $23 billion, this being an area where there are 400,000 travel industry jobs.
There have been other effects of the BP oil spill, such as the drop in real estate value for the properties in the affected areas. One of the most wide-reaching effects is on the oil industry which will be monitored much more closely and which will have to worry about additional fees and regulations that have been instated in order to avoid similar things from happening. One might say that these are actually positive effects and that the BP oil spill has also managed to produce some good things.
In conclusion, the effects of the BP oil spill on the coastal areas in the Gulf of Mexico have been devastating, destroying people’s lives and their jobs, ruining already shaky local economies in some of the poorest parts of the U.S. It is safe to say that the coastal areas still have to recover from the effects of the spill.