Using the estimates provided by Nick Stockton, calculate how many gallons of crude oil are leaking into the ocean as a result of “small” oil spills.
Based on your calculations, do you think that the government should alter the regulation of small leaks? How do you balance the potential environmental benefits of regulation with the impact on the companies that own oil rigs?
Right now the government depends on oil companies to report when and how much crude oil is leaked. Do you think that companies accurately report these numbers? How do you suggest the government get a more accurate estimate of how much oil is leaked each year?
After listening to the segment, read this article about the extent of small oil spills and the problem of relying upon oil companies to self-report leaks. Taking into account budgetary constraints of the Coast Guard, have students devise a way to keep companies honest about their oil spill reporting.