The Great Lakes Dilbit Defenders Scavenger Hunt
In response to the recent BP diluted bitumen (dilbit) spill into Lake Michigan, we are launching a Find A Formation Scavenger Hunt.
In the aftermath of the Enbridge Line 6B spill we have been finding strange formations all along the affected stretch of the Kalamazoo River. We sent some of these formations to a lab to be chemically analyzed and discovered that they contain small quantities of the oil that Enbridge spilled in the river, as well as dangerous chemicals consistent with the use of an oil dispersant called Corexit. The presence of these chemicals in the rocks we found may indicate that a dispersant or surface-washing product like Corexit was used in the “cleanup” of the Kalamazoo River. Perhaps the presence of these chemicals is also a sign that the products used to dilute bitumen from the Alberta tar sands are very similar to those contained in oil dispersants and surface-washing agents. Regardless, we know that these formations are harmful to human and ecosystem health.
We suspect that similar formations will start appearing around the spill area in Lake Michigan. You may first notice formations that look a lot like tar – similar to those found in the Gulf of Mexico after the BP Deep Water Horizon Spill. After a few months and perhaps years, we believe it is likely that some of the spilled product will start mixing with sediment in the Lake and turning into formations like the ones we have been finding in the Kalamazoo River.
Your task? Find one or many of these formations, and follow the guidelines below!
-Be careful about exposure when looking for tar balls and other rock formations.
-Wear rubber gloves when handling the formations you find.
-Take a picture of yourself finding a formation, and record the exact location. Date and sign.
-Make sure to keep the formations in a bucket, not a plastic bag. If possible, store them in a cool, dark area.
-Weigh and measure the formations.
-Take a picture of the formations and send it to us in an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or post it on the scavenger hunt event page. We will make arrangements with you to come pick up your find.
The first round of the scavenger hunt runs from March 29, 2014 - October 31, 2014
-Everyone: by participating in this scavenger hunt, you will be helping to educate the broader community about the impacts of tar sands production, transportation, and spills. It will also be fun!
-1st prize of a $100.00 Prepaid Visa Card to the largest tar paddy-like formation, of oil goblets and sediment
-2nd prize of a $50.00 Prepaid Visa Card to heaviest formation as in weight.
-3rd prize of a $25.00 Prepaid Visa Card to largest formation as in mass.
Check out the contest announcement on our website: http://www.thegreatlakesdilbitdefenders.com/find-a-formation-scavenger-hunt/