Nick Shay, a physical oceanographer at the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, said Monday once the oil enters the Loop Current, it likely will end up in the Keys and continue east into the Gulf Stream.
Shay says the oil could affect Florida's beaches, coral reefs, fisheries and ecosystem within a week.
He described the Loop Current as similar to a "conveyor belt,"
sweeping around the Gulf, through the Keys and right up the East
Shay says he cannot think of any scenario where the oil doesn't
eventually reach the Florida Keys.
Image Source: Skytruth
--BP Offshore Oil Disaster Information--
The oil spill disaster was caused by an explosion at an offshore drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico. The leak is releasing some 5,000 barrels of oil per day, and efforts to manage the spill with controlled burning, dispersal and plugging the leak have been unsuccessful.
Today, the oil is still freely flowing from the offshore drilling rig, and once that oil hits one of the main ocean currents, the oil will quickly contaminate the rest of the world's oceans.
This oil spill could become the worst oil spill in history, surpassing the damage done by the Exxon Valdez tanker that spilled 11 million gallons of oil into the ecologically sensitive Prince William Sound in 1989.
Efforts to fight the offshore oil disaster still continue.
Environmentalists who originally opposed offshore oil drilling, feared an oil spill disaster as a potential worst-case scenereo. The BP Offshore Oil Disaster is quickly becoming that worst-case scenereo.
--More Information Online--
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