“When This Is All You Know, How Do You Move On?”

The Washington Post today has a must-read story on a group of Louisianans who recently visited Cordova & other Alaska communities devastated by the Exxon Valdez disaster:

The group from Louisiana – professors, politicians and community leaders – spent a week in Alaska, looking to learn from those who have been where they are headed, those whose lives were linked to the nation’s largest oil spill before the Gulf of Mexico incident took that distinction this year. They discovered that spills have a way of lingering long after the water is declared open and the beaches are deemed safe.

If Alaska is any indication, the first year after a spill is not the hardest. It’s the years afterward when the environmental, cultural and societal consequences really surface.

Set aside 10 minutes to read the whole thing. When people ask you “But isn’t the oil gone?”, tell them the story of Cordova & how it’s still trying to get back to normal, 21 years after Valdez.