The Tarballs Cometh, To Galveston

As the Fourth of July weekend loomed, Galveston's visitors bureau put out a press release "reminding the public that Island beaches remain oil free and open for business this 4th of July holiday weekend....The U.S. Coast Guard confirms that the spill remains more than 200 miles away from Galveston's shoreline."

Not so fast.

State officials are confirming in a press conference today that tar balls on Galveston and other beaches are from the Deepwater Horizon spill, the first time Texas beaches have been affected.

Tar balls, to be honest, aren't exactly unusual after high tides in the Gulf like the ones stirred up by Hurricane Alex.

But various media outlets are reporting that these particular tar balls are, indeed, from the big spill.

Governor Rick Perry issued a statement: "As we've now seen the first confirmed impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on our coast, I want to assure Texans that we are taking aggressive steps to address this situation and to mitigate any effects to our beaches," Perry said. "The state of Texas and the General Land Office are continuing to work closely with the Coast Guard to ensure we use all available resources and take the necessary measures to protect the Texas coastline."

So we've been hit by the oil, too. Maybe it's the equivalent of Queen Elizabeth, saying in the middle of the WWII Blitz after Buckingham Palace was bombed, that now at least she could "look the East End in the eye."

But in truth the damage in Texas is -- at least so far -- nowhere near other Gulf states.

So we can keep crossing our fingers...

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Richard Connelly
Contact: Richard Connelly