Texas will receive more than $750 million of the $20 billion BP oil spill settlement announced this week. The state will use some of that money to prepare for future disasters in the Gulf of Mexico.
Five years ago, oil was still pouring into the Gulf after an offshore rig exploded, killing 11 people and causing the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history. Florida State University oceanographer Ian McDonald, like a lot of researchers, felt frustrated at the time that civilian experts weren’t being included in the government’s emergency response.
“There’s a terrific brain trust of academics and professionals in the Gulf Coast region, and there are none of them that are not prepared at any time to go and try to fight this thing,” McDonald said.