Nalco: Govt Has Established Dispersant's Safety, Effectiveness

Nalco's Chief Technology Officer, Dr. Manian Ramesh, made the following statement about the use of COREXIT dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico:

"The use of COREXIT dispersants to break up the oil in the Gulf of Mexico has been widely acknowledged by government officials as a safe, effective and proven response. Its ingredients rapidly biodegrade, do not bio-accumulate and are commonly found in popular household products. And because the dispersant works by spreading oil particles evenly through the water column, it is extremely unlikely that individuals along the Gulf Coast would come into contact with it.

In fact, we have not seen any evidence of dispersant-related health effects and government responders have not stated that they have found such a link either.

A recent report by the Centers for Disease Control concluded that 'because of the strict guidelines that must be followed to utilize dispersants, it is unlikely that the general public will be exposed (directly) to (the) product.' The report further states that 'ingredients are not considered to cause chemical sensitization; the dispersants contain proven, biodegradable and low toxicity surfactants.'

Those working closely with dispersants should continue to adhere to OSHA's safety guidelines. But, it is important to note that COREXIT dispersants are being used at sea and, increasingly, below the water's surface. As stipulated by federal guidelines, it cannot be sprayed within two miles of a boat or platform or three miles of a shoreline.

Scientists and policymakers agree that the greatest threat to workers, wildlife and vegetation is from the leaking oil. Nalco remains committed to working in coordination with government responders to minimize the effects that the oil is having on the Gulf's natural resources and on the livelihoods of those who live and work in the region."