The horrors of the environmental devastation in the Gulf of Mexico are very real, but, fortunately, the assault is only coming from the ground– not the sky. A YouTube video recently started making the rounds of what looked like “oil rain” falling in Louisiana, the sheen clearly visible on the ground. The problem? It’s not possible for it to rain oil– and Rachel Maddow explains why.
The video, which shows oil making rainbows on the ground as rain falls in suburban Louisiana, gained credibility in part due to suggestions that the cleanup of the ocean will be easier because the oil will evaporate over time. The simple logic of that, Maddow explains, is that what goes up must come down, causing it to rain crude from the sky. But oil doesn’t evaporate, not in its entirety, so it’s impossible for droplets of crude to be pelting us from above. Maddow guesses that what the man in the video sees is simply spilled car oil that was already on the street, but nothing new coming from the ruins of Deepwater Horizon.
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