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Still Addicted to Oil

One year out, it's almost "as if the Gulf of Mexico oil spill never occurred"

April 21, 2011
Contact: John Masson, 734.647.7352,

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—The Gulf Coast marked a grim anniversary this month: one year since the Deepwater Horizon exploded, burned, and sank about 50 miles off the coast of Louisiana, killing 11 and unleashing the largest accidental marine oil spill in history.

While the passage of time may have diminished attention on the disaster elsewhere in the country, the states awash in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico maintain a keen interest on the case as it works its way through the justice system.

So does David Uhlmann, the Jeffrey F. Liss Professor from Practice at Michigan Law and the former top prosecutor in the Environmental Crimes Section at the Justice Department. BP Spill

Uhlmann sat down with U-M News Service interviewer Jared Wadley recently to talk about the progress of the investigation, and the hard lessons the spill should have taught a nation that Uhlmann says remains far too dependent on oil.

Among Uhlmann's observations: there have been only limited changes to laws applying to drilling, which has already resumed on the Gulf of Mexico; and we continue to drill in deep water despite technology limitations that make controlling accidents extremely problematic.

What did we learn from last summer's disaster in the Gulf? What, if anything, are we doing differently as a result? Are we doing what we need to do to make sure a similar accident doesn't happen again? Click on the podcast to learn more.

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