BP's oil disaster that began April 20, 2010 gushed at least 4.9 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, causing the largest accidental marine oil spill in history – and the largest environmental disaster in US history.

The Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, killing 11 workers, burned for two days, then sank to the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico.  

The disaster’s impact on the environment in the Gulf, particularly around Louisiana's fragile marshlands, has been catastrophic. According to a report released by the Center for Biological Diversity this month: "Approximately 6,000 sea turtles, 26,000 dolphins and whales, 82,000 birds, and countless fish and invertebrates may have been harmed by the disaster."

Dr Ed Cake, a 70-year-old biological oceanographer, told Al Jazeera that we are still in the very beginning stages of this disaster, and said: "I will not be alive to see the Gulf of Mexico recover. Without funding and serious commitment, these things [ecological/marine life recovery] will not come back to pre-April 2010 levels for decades."

Source: Al Jazeera