Environmental oil pollution events have become a major issue through-out the world. This is illustrated by the oil spills in the Yellowstone River, Alaska tundra, Gulf of Mexico event and Enbridge (Wisconsin). In general, concerns related to these spills are focused on environmental issues, but more recently there have also been discussions around the general population and worker health. Historically, exposures from oil spills were mainly associated with water and soil events, but recently these concerns have been extended to air pollution hazards. Exposure from these types of events can be categorized as either acute or chronic. With the real conundrum associated with long-term effects. Health consequences from these types of events are not well known. At least for the Gulf of Mexico spill however, epidemiological studies have been initiated for the elucidation of diseases and trends. The problem is information from these studies will not be available for years to decades and thus is of little current value. The Gulf spill however has provided basic information on acute effects; nonetheless, each spill has different parameters and characteristics.
Last date updated on July, 2014