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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: North Bay / Marin | San Francisco | Environment & Forest Defense
Environmental toll from oil spill in SF unknow exactly
A majority of the beaches in Marin County were closed today. Hazmat crews were working on the Golden Gate National Recreation Area and Muir Beach into the early evening. Other San Francisco Bay areas had workers cleaning up the M/V Cosco Busan mess as well.
Ca Depart of Fish and Game held a dog and pony show regarding Oiled Wildlife Network's (OWCN) recovery efforts to provide potential volunteers with information on how to get involved. Some information about oil spill types was provided. Outside the park service building, a few hundred yards away, hazmat suited people were cleaning up the beach in Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The appearance was that the wildlife agency per funding via legislation is set up and there are volunteers already in place, but it hasn't occurred enough to run smoothly. People want to volunteer, but they weren't plugged in prior to the event taking place. The audience was respectful for the most part, but a sense of frustration existed in the crowd.
Some side discussions at the meeting where posed to the Marin Sheriff Office of Emergency Services spokesperson as to why it took so long for some beaches to be closed and why some locations got priority over other locations. A woman commented on how a Sausalito cop said to her that they can't closed all beaches. She said could see five birds beached and in need of assistance and it wasn't until the Sausalito Fire Chief came along and declared the beach close that officials there took notice. Apparently officials can use the human health factor at any time to justify closing a beach if need be. Sounds like there was one cop would didn't care that the ocean and beaches were being soiled with the cargo ship's oil. The Sheriff's OES guy actually seemed to want to hear the citizens concerns. He said Marin County's being hit hardest by the oil spill. Seems as if the local agencies considered an oil spill, but haven't actually put a comprehensive plan into their organizations and how to handle the inevitable.
Yvone Addassi reported to the audience that there are 200 birds being handled and 60 dead as of her last phone contact with the wildlife center. A quick check of their website, that count increased to 231 being treated and 65 dead. The OWCN has the ability to care in house with up to a 1,000 birds. They know of oiled birds on the Farallones Islands, but not actual oil on the islands. She said this was a batch release of oil and they are taking that into account with the next few days of reconnaissance and recovery efforts. Point being, the ship isn't still leaking oil. A person speaking at the meeting did state had this been a double hull ship, this leak wouldn't have happened. However, all crude transport ships are required to be double hulled, but this is a cargo transport ship and double hulls aren't required to enter into this port.
Apparently the Valdez spill was so huge, that every conceivable type of cleanup method was performed. Thus, all those techniques were written about or shared and providing guidance for clean up in this situation. The storms have shifted the oil around and the next few days will shed light on the toll the environment takes from this cargo ship's mess.
A hazmat truck with Maine license plates leaves Muir Beach as daylight was ending. Several other trucks left with this one, but they hand California license plates. Seemed like a number of contractors working the clean up efforts.
Oiled Wildlife Network's info meeting at Headlands Institute, Golden Gate National Recreation Area
A bobcat works picking up bags right on the beach as the sun went down. A semi trailer sat in the parking lot with other clean up efforts.
Bird in water in Bolinas. Bird seemed to be doing fine ducking between waves. Group of birds walking around in mud flat/lagoon on drive to Bolinas. Hard to tell if the rain caused a reflection or whether there was an oil slick in parts of the lagoon.
Due to ongoing oil spill and animal rescue, this beach is closed by order of the Gulf of Farallones National Marine Sanctuary
Please stay off beach for wildlife rescue
At beach entrance in Bolinas.
"Please! Leash dogs
Oiled Bird will Freeze If chased into Water
If you see an oiled bird - call 847-0059"
Marin County Open Space District - Department of Parks & Open Space
Caution - The Parks Open Space District has detected oil at this preserve.
Please do not touch anything that has been contaminated with oil. Please do not make contact with the water. To Report injured wildlife contact the distressed wildlife hotline at: (985) 781-0804
For more information contact the department at: (415) 499-6387