DHH, DEQ, LDWF Secretaries Send Letter to BP outlining concerns, requesting BP Release Information on Dispersants
BATON ROUGE (May 8, 2010) - Secretary Alan Levine of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality Secretary Peggy Hatch, and Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Robert Barham sent a letter to British Petroleum today outlining their concerns related to potential dispersant impact on Louisiana's wildlife and fisheries, environment and public health. Officials are also requesting BP release information on the effects of the dispersants they are using to combat the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
We also have longer-term questions and concerns that need to be addressed:
Three days ago, in a Unified Command Group meeting that included a BP representative, Secretary Barham requested studies to support usage of the dispersants. As of now, the state has not received the requested information. We are again requesting data, analysis and studies of the effects of oil spill dispersants used, and most importantly, a BP commitment that the dispersants being used to fight the oil spill will not cause irreparable, short-term or long-term harm to our wetlands, coast, environment, marine life, wildlife or people. Please submit to us (1) any reports, studies or data either in BP's possession or conducted by BP on the impact of dispersants, and (2) any plans BP has to assist Louisiana in mitigating any negative effects on our environment, health, wildlife and fisheries.The state is committed to ensuring a long-term solution is put in place to provide the public with confidence in the safety of our products. Our state and seafood industry must have a long-term commitment from BP to establish and sustain an initiative to ensure this is the case.
We look forward to your immediate response.
Secretary, Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals
Secretary, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality
Secretary, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
cc: Doug Suttles, COO, BP Global (Robert EOC)
Mike Utsler, Senior VP, BP Alaska Operations (Houma EOC)
Lisa Jackson, Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Thomas Frieden, M.D., M.P.H., Director, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Margaret Hamburg, M.D., Commissioner, U.S. Food and Drug Administration