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ActivismDisasters & Extreme WeatherEndangered SpeciesOil Spills

BP No Longer Burning Endangered Sea Turtles, They Say

kemps ridley endangered baby sea turtle

Following up on a post I wrote a couple weeks ago about BP burning endangered sea turtles alive, the news is now that they have responded to the criticism (as if burning endangered sea turtles and blocking hired rescue crews from saving them isn’t something they could have seen was beyond wrong in the first place).

BP and the US Coast Guard have reached an agreement to stop this “inadvertent” burning from happening.

“We’ve agreed to meet to work out the terms to make sure the turtles are protected,” Jason Burge, a lawyer for several environmental groups suing to protect the sea turtles, told U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier at an emergency hearing last week in New Orleans federal court.

“The wildlife groups withdrew their request for a temporary restraining order blocking the burns, on the condition they may renew the request later if the turtle-rescue settlement falls apart,” Bloomberg reports.

In typical lawyer language, but probably without much real concern to back it up, BP’s lead lawyer in New Orleans spill-related litigation Don Haycraft said, “This effort is an example of BP and the government and the outside parties reaching a common agreement on an issue — protecting sea turtles — that is important to everyone.”

Of course, the new concern and effort to save the turtles is probably due more to the fact that several environmental organizations sued BP and the Coast Guard on June 30.

If BP doesn’t follow through on several promises, the wildlife groups (which withdrew a request for a temporary restraining order to block the burns) can renew the request.

via Bloomberg Businessweek

Photo Credit: Deepwater Horizon Response via flickr




4 comments
  1. Evan Wilson

    Let's not become overconfident about how well the "observer" approach ordered by the court will work. The local trawlers that will carry the observers to the site of the burns will be under the command of shrimper captains who possess a deep-seated hostility for sea turtles. That's because they've been forced by regulators to install excluder devices (TEDs) in their nets to prevent turtle drownings. Problem is: TEDs also release a portion of the wanted catch.

    Furthermore, it's no accident that an endangered Kemp's ridley that was trussed up and dragged behind a boat to be drowned off Topsail Island, N.C. paid the price for new fisheries regulations. Also in North Carolina, at Cape Hatteras National Seashore last week, a pregnant Loggerhead was dragged 50 feet and crushed by an All Terrain Vehicle while beached to lay her eggs. Local people have posted numerous blogs blaming the turtle ever since!

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