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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 8/9/10

The Great Gulf Oil Disaster-Seafood Hoodwink

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scontentsmaller">NOAA tests seafood for traces of oil, but not dispersant

BP, the Obama Administration and government agencies have lost much credibility in the last few months when it comes to reports on the Gulf oil disaster and its impact on communities on the Gulf Coast and the Gulf of Mexico itself. So, when one hears an Obama aide claiming that President Barack Obama will have seafood at his birthday party and is "confident in the quality of the Gulf of Mexico seafood," it's a logical reaction to wonder whether such a comment is part of a cover-up especially since more information on scientists finding specks of oil in crab larvae is being reported.

On Sunday, August 8th, AFP reported on White House energy advisor Carol Browner's statement on how guests at Obama's birthday party would be served seafood from the Gulf of Mexico. The report noted "on Friday the US Food and Drug Administration [FDA], which earlier deemed safe the seafood caught in waters open for fishing, said that some 1.8 million gallons of chemical dispersants that were poured into the sea to dissipate the massive oil slick was unlikely to show up in the food chain."

A remark from BP's chief operating officer Doug Suttles saying he would "eat the Gulf of Mexico seafood" and "feed it to [his] family" was included. Suttles earned notoriety for lying not so subtly about blocking media from covering the Gulf.

The FDA asserts, "There is no information at this time to indicate that they (dispersants) pose a public health threat from exposure through the consumption of seafood." No scientific testing was cited to support the claim.

Such an assertion sharply contradicts or outright ignores university scientists with the University of Southern Mississippi and Tulane University in New Orleans who spotted the "first indications" oil was entering the Gulf seafood chain "in crab larvae" in last week of June. The scientists "found droplets of oil in the larvae of blue crabs and fiddler crabs sampled from Louisiana to Pensacola, Fla."

It sharply contradicts or outright ignores this young man who was eating oysters at a restaurant in Cornelius, North Carolina over a month ago and found tar inside at least one of the oysters he was served.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), FDA, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and state governments have been testing the fish since the middle of July if not earlier. Data collection and analysis has been conducted to prevent contaminated seafood from entering food markets in the country. But, the testing has depended on "smell testing."

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Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof Press. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure." He was an editor for
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