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May 24, 2010

Oil reaches Louisiana shores

Over one month after the initial explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, crude oil continues to flow into the Gulf of Mexico, and oil slicks have slowly reached as far as 12 miles into Louisiana's marshes. According to Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, more than 65 miles of Louisiana's shoreline has now been oiled. BP said it will be at least Wednesday before they will try using heavy mud and cement to plug the leak, a maneuver called a "top kill" that represents their best hope of stopping the oil after several failed attempts. Based on low estimates, at least 6 million gallons of crude have spewed into the Gulf so far - though some scientists have said they believe the spill already surpasses the 11 million-gallon 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill off Alaska as the worst in U.S. history. (39 photos total)

A dragonfly tries to clean itself as it is stuck to marsh grass covered in oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, in Garden Island Bay on the Gulf Coast of Louisiana near Venice on Tuesday, May 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

A Greenpeace activist steps through oil on a beach along the Gulf of Mexico on May 20, 2010 near Venice, Louisiana. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

A ship's wake cuts through a pattern of oil near the site of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico Monday, May 17, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel) #

Oil reaches the marshlands on the northeast pass of the Mississippi Delta May 23, 2010. (REUTERS/Daniel Beltra/Greenpeace) #

A dead Northern Gannet covered in oil lies along Grand Isle Beach in Grand Isle, Louisiana May 21, 2010. A member of Tri-State Bird Rescue and Research tagged the spot of the location of the incident. (REUTERS/Sean Gardner) #

A BP cleanup worker rakes oil from the beach on May 22, 2010 on Elmer's Island, Louisiana. Authorities closed the popular tourist beach to the public and media wishing to visit the beach must be escorted by a BP official. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

Oil cleanup workers bring in a load of contaminated oil-absorbent booms from the Gulf of Mexico on May 20, 2010 near Venice, Louisiana. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

Bridget Hargrove of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, her four-year-old son Ayden and one-year-old daughter, Emma, wade in baby pools away from the oil contaminated Gulf of Mexico on Grand Isle beach in Grand Isle, Louisiana on May 21, 2010. Grand Isle Mayor David Camardelle said the town has closed its beach effective from noon Friday due to the presence of oil on the beach. (REUTERS/Sean Gardner) #

Specks of oil stick onto the foot of Maggie Grace Hurdle, 8, of Rosedale, Louisiana, as she walks along a beach in Grand Isle, Louisiana May 21, 2010. (REUTERS/Sean Gardner) #

A reddish egret, its legs and tail feathers coated with oil, flies above the water in Grand Isle, Louisiana, May 20, 2010. (U.S. Coast Guard photo/Petty Officer 3rd Class Patrick Kelley) #

Natural gas siphoned from the BP oil leak burns off on the Discover Enterprise on May 21, 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico off the Louisiana coast. Ultra-deepwater rigs and other equipment are being assembled at the site, preparing for a procedure called a "top kill" that BP hopes will stop the flow of oil from the well. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

Natural gas from the damaged Deepwater Horizon wellhead is burned off by the drillship Discoverer Enterprise May 16, 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast Louisiana. (Patrick Kelley/U.S. Coast Guard via Getty Images) #

Collected oil burns on the water in this aerial view seven miles northeast of the Deepwater Horizon site over the Gulf of Mexico, May 18, 2010. (REUTERS/Daniel Beltra/Greenpeace) #

Oil is seen on the surface of the Gulf of Mexico about six miles southeast of Grand Isle, Louisiana May 21, 2010. (REUTERS/Sean Gardner) #

Protective booms surround islands near mouth of the Mississippi River south of Venice, Louisiana from an oil spill Monday, May 17, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel) #

Oil floats around booms and through marshlands of the Mississippi Delta on May 23, 2010. (REUTERS/Daniel Beltra/Greenpeace) #

Maura Wood, Senior Program Manager of Coastal Louisiana Restoration for the National Wildlife Federation takes a sample of water in a heavily oiled marsh near Pass a Loutre, Louisiana on May 20, 2010. (REUTERS/Lee Celano) #

An oil-stained pelican leaves its nest as oil washes ashore on an island that is home to hundreds of brown pelican nests as well at terns, gulls and roseated spoonbills in Barataria Bay just inside the the coast of Louisiana, Saturday, May 22, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

A Plaquemines Parish employee lays oil absorbent boom as pelicans leave their nests on an island in Barataria Bay, Louisiana, Saturday, May 22, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

A Louisiana Fish and Wildlife officer unsuccessfully pursues an oil soaked pelican in Barataria Bay, Louisiana on Sunday, May 23, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

An oil-soaked pelican takes flight after Louisiana Fish and Wildlife employees tried to corral him on an island in Barataria Bay on Sunday, May 23, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

Oil is scooped out of a marsh impacted by the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in Redfish Bay along the coast of Louisiana, Saturday, May 22, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

A sheen of oil sits on the surface of the Gulf of Mexico close to the site of the BP oil spill as a boat uses a containment boom to gather the oil to be burned off approximately 42 miles off the coast of Louisiana May 18, 2010 (REUTERS/Hans Deryk) #

Crews try to clean an island covered in oil on the south part of East Bay May 23, 2010. (REUTERS/Daniel Beltra/Greenpeace) #

A BP cleanup crew removes oil from a beach on May 23, 2010 at Port Fourchon, Louisiana. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

An oil-covered crab crawls past a blob of oil on the beach on May 22, 2010 on Grand Isle, Louisiana. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

A boat travels between marsh and oil-stained boom near the mouth of the Mississippi River south of Venice, Louisiana Wednesday, May 19, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel) #

Oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill is seen clumped on roseau cane in the Northeast Pass of the Mississippi River on the coast of Louisiana near Venice, Tuesday, May 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

A ship maneuvers and sprays water near a rig in heavy surface oil in this aerial view over the Gulf of Mexico May 18, 2010, as oil continues to leak from the Deepwater Horizon wellhead. (REUTERS/Daniel Beltra/Greenpeace) #

These Kemp's Ridley turtles, photographed on May 23rd, 2010, are considered the smallest marine turtles in the world and are being held at the New England Aquarium in Boston, Massachusetts because they cannot be released in the wild, due in part to the Gulf Coast oil spill. (Dina Rudick/Boston Globe) #

The sun rises over an oil-soaked beach on May 23, 2010 on Grand Isle, Louisiana. (John Moore/Getty Images) #

Greenpeace Senior Campaigner Lindsey Allen attempts to save a small crab covered in oil walking along the shore of the breakwater in the mouth of the Mississippi River where it meets the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana, May 18, 2010. (REUTERS/Sean Gardner/Greenpeace) #

An outboard boat motor breaks up a thick layer of oil as Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser toured the oil-impacted marsh of Pass a Loutre on Wednesday, May 19, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

A shrimp boat is used to collect oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico in the waters of Chandeleur Sound, Louisiana on May 5, 2010. (AP Photo/Eric Gay) #

Volunteers from the Grassroots Mapping project made a trip in a small boat (upper left) to the the Chandeleur Islands near Louisiana's Misissippi Delta on May 9th, 2010, taking with them a balloon (green tether seen at left) and photo equipment to help document the impact of the oil spill. Public domain photo provided by Jeff Warren and Grassroots Mapping project. #

Dr. Erica Miller, a member of the Louisiana State Wildlife Response Team, cleans a pelican of oil at the Clean Gulf Associates Mobile Wildlife Rehabilitation Station on Ft. Jackson in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, May 15, 2010. (REUTERS/U.S. Navy/Justin Stumberg) #

A helicopter flies over surface oil in this aerial view over the Gulf of Mexico, May 18, 2010. (REUTERS/Daniel Beltra/Greenpeace) #

A young heron sits dying amidst oil splattering underneath mangrove on an island impacted by oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in Barataria Bay, along the the coast of Louisiana on Sunday, May 23, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

Boat captain Preston Morris shows the oil on his hands while collecting surface samples from the marsh of Pass a Loutre, Louisiana on Wednesday, May 19, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #

 
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