The Australian Greens, together with Senator Xenophon, have successfully launched an inquiry into BP's plans to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight - a big moment for protecting these breathtaking marine sanctuaries.
Our inquiry succeeded by just one vote, so we know BP are pretty scared. Here's an idea of what we'll be looking into:
• The effect of any accident on the marine environment.
• The capacity - or lack thereof - of government or private interests to mitigate the effect of an oil spill.
• Effects on tourism, commercial fishing activities and other regional industries.
• The state of current research and science.
This is a win for the Bight, and a win for those who want to protect the pristine marine environment that makes South Australia so special.
The Great Australian Bight is home to an incredible array of wildlife: humpback, blue and southern right whales, great white sharks, southern bluefin tuna, Australian sea lions, white-bellied sea eagles and albatross. This beautiful piece of our state is incredibly fragile, and irreplaceable.
BP has a terrible track record when it comes to drilling. It is solely responsible for the Deepwater Horizon oil blowout in the Gulf of Mexico -- the worst in history. Over 87 days, about 4.9 million barrels of oil flowed into the sea. This devastated marine life, local industries and the community. Workers lost their lives. And BP hasn't even funded the clean-up bill!
The Australian Greens will be holding BP to account during this inquiry. Stay tuned for details of how to make a submission, and how to follow its progress.
Thanks to everyone who played a role in the earlier NOPSEMA inquiry into this drilling - it paved the way for this next crucial step to stop BP from drilling in the Bight.
Find out more about the Australian Greens' campaign to protect Kangaroo Island.
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