Friday, March 22, 2024 — Exxon Valdez 35 years later: progress and caution

When the Exxon Valdez supertanker broke open on March 24, 1989, the resulting oil spill coated 1,300 miles of shoreline in Alaska’s Prince William Sound and killed thousands of fish, birds, and wildlife. The environmental disaster is associated with the distressing images of water birds, otters, and other animals fighting for their lives through a thick coat of crude oil. The spill destroyed subsistence and commercial fishing for Alaska Native fishers, and created ecological contamination that is still recovering. We’ll look at the lasting harm from the spill 35 years later, and what’s changed to prevent future disasters.