Scientists Criticize White House Response to Oil Spill

With heavy oil at last washing ashore in Louisiana, scientists are slamming the Obama administration for responding to the Deepwater Horizon spill too slowly, and not investigating enough.

“It seems baffling that we don't know how much oil is being spilled,” one oceanographer said on Capitol Hill yesterday. The government has deployed 1,105 ships to contain the oil, the New York Times explains, but scientists complain that they aren't taking enough water samples, or making those samples public.

The scientists point out that in the month since the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, the government has failed to make public a single test result on water from the deep ocean. And the scientists say the administration has been too reluctant to demand an accurate analysis of how many gallons of oil are flowing into the sea from the gushing oil well.

"In responding to this oil spill, it is critical that all actions be conducted in a transparent manner, with all data and information related to the spill readily available to the United States government and the American people," Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson said in a letter.