The website If It Was My Home allows anyone to personalize the magnitude of the British Petroleum (BO) Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and spill–also known as “the greatest
environmental disaster in United States history.”
The site opens with a map superimposing the shape of the spill as of the day the page is visited over the general region the user's computer is located in. For instance, mine right now shows the spill epicenter as Los Angeles. However, type any town into a field and get a gander at how mucked up that region would be with a spill this size. After the jump, you can see the results for Costa Mesa, home of the Weekly World HQ.
Pretty creepy, eh?
Any old town will do: Grandma Ruth's . . . Lindsay Lohan's . . . Sarah Palin's.
You can also hit a button to put the spill back in the Gulf, although some folks from the coasts of Louisiana to Florida probably wish they could hit a button and blast the real damage area into outer space instead of cyberspace.
IfItWasMyHome.com–a Q in the FAQ asks, “Shouldn't the name of your site be ifitWEREmyhome.com?”–suggests sharing the map with friends so that they, too, can understand the impact.
Letting one's feelings about the spill be known to one's senators and representative in the House is also recommended.
Currently spewing 1,050,000 U.S. gallons of crude per day, the third serious incident involving BP in this country over the past five years has so far killed 253 sea turtles and 29 dolphins. The death count, like the spill area provided by the National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration, is updated every 24 hours. (The date of the last update is at the bottom of the page.)
The creators of the page explains why the size of the spill seems to change depending
on where you overlay it. (Something to do with the equator, Google Maps and the “Mercator Projection,” which I believe are three
of the seven signs of the apocalypse.)
The site also notes other ways to get involved, including:
- donating to coastal relief through the National Wildlife Foundation and International Bird Rescue;
- volunteering yourself to help with cleanup in Lousiana and Florida, or your vessel through the Vessels of Opportunity program;
- and, if you have a possible technological solutions to aid in the oil spill response efforts, submitting your idea to the EPA, or offering assistance to the inventors at GulfClean.org.