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Pool of Oil Found on Cat Island At Gulf Islands National Seashore


A pool of oil roughly 33 feet by 65 feet long has been discovered at Cat Island, part of Gulf Islands National Seashore. NPS photo.

You can add pools of oil to the oily residues turning up at Gulf Islands National Seashore from the Deepwater Horizon disaster.

During field surveys on Saturday a team found what the National Park Service is describing as "an unusually large pool of oil" on Cat Island, one that "will prove challenging to remove."

"While crews have grown accustomed to finding tar balls, tar patties and other weathered oil products scattered in the sand, this deposit was nearly 10 meters (@33 feet) across, 20 meters (@65.5 feet) long and appeared to be several inches deep in the center," reports park staff. "The cleanup of this area will be delicate work, as the pool backs up to a salt marsh."

According to the Park Service, it is working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the state of Mississippi to develop "a specific strategy for the cleanup effort to include pom-poms to absorb liquid oil and hand tools to remove oiled sand. No mechanized equipment will be allowed on site. All material will be packed in and out on foot."

Elsewhere at Gulf Islands, the Park Service reports that surface areas at the Santa Rosa beaches are in excellent condition and considerable progress has been made cleaning the Fort Pickens beach areas."

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