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Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

1989

“The Exxon Shipping Company–owned Exxon Valdez oil tanker spills 10.8 million gallons of crude oil into Prince William Sound, off the Alaskan coast, after striking a reef. The spill pollutes 1,300 miles of coastline, killing 250,000 seabirds, 3,000 sea otters, and 250 bald eagles, and destroys billions of salmon eggs in a major blow to Alaska’s fishing industry. In response to global concern, the U.S. Congress passes new legislation to regulate the shipping industry, including the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, which increases penalties for oil spills, sets requirements for vessel construction, and mandates that all tankers operating in U.S. waters be double-hulled. In addition, a 1992 amendment to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution From Ships (MARPOL), which has over 155 signatories in 2021, requires that all newly built tankers be double-hulled.” Council on Foreign Relations

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Ecological Disasters