But oil industry pollution doesn't hurt human health in times of disaster only. It turns out that a common type of pollution emitted by the oil industry during normal operations may be making exposed people more vulnerable to the COVID-19.
In the last six years, officials in Texas and Louisiana issued permits allowing 74 petrochemical, oil, and gas projects to pump as much climate-warming pollution into the atmosphere as running 29 coal-fired power plants around the clock.
When we talk about the problem of oil industry accidents, we tend to focus on dramatic events like the deadly 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon explosion off the coast of Louisiana, or the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil tanker crash in Alaska's Prince William Sound. But the industry is far more accident-prone than such relatively rare high-profile disasters suggest.
Paula Chakravartty and Nitasha Dhillon
Migrant workers in the Gulf states have few rights and work in poor conditions, yet they are organizing and protesting, and they need solidarity. True solidarity means forging a coalition of equals—recognizing that migrant workers in the Gulf are far from passive victims—and supporting their struggle for life and dignity.
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