Breaking: Another Gulf Oil Platform Explodes

Follow Kate Sheppard, Mac McClelland, and Julia Whitty on Twitter for the latest updates on the explosion.

Another oil platform has exploded in the Gulf, and details are still coming in about today’s explosion. Firefighters are battling the blaze on the platform, and there are reports of a mile-long oil sheen extending from the site. As the Houston Chronicle reports, platform owner Mariner Energy has been involved in 13 accidents in the Gulf since 2006.

Stay tuned, we’ll have more details on today’s explosion as they come in.

Perhaps it’s a good time for a reminder of just how many pipelines (33,000 miles), wells (50,000), platforms and rigs (thousands of abandoned ones alone) are out there in the Gulf, each with its own potential for disaster. And did we mention it’s hurricane season?

Here’s what it looks like out there, from our September/October issue:Click for larger versionClick here for a larger version.

Special Report: Check out our in-depth investigation of BP’s crimes in the Gulf, “BP’s Deep Secrets.”

WE DON'T KNOW

What's going to happen next as the headlines grow crazier and more disconcerting by the day. But we do know the job of an independent, unrelenting press is more important than ever—and the ongoing commitment of MoJo readers to fight for a democracy where facts matter and all can participate is absolutely vital.

If you feel the urgency deep in your bones like we do, please consider signing up as a monthly donor during our fall pledge drive to support Mother Jones' fair and fearless reporting for the long haul (or make a one-time gift if that works better for you). The headlines may fade, but the need to investigate the powerful never will.

  • Kate Sheppard was a staff reporter in Mother Jones' Washington bureau from 2009 to 2013. She is now a senior reporter and the energy and environment editor at The Huffington Post. She can be reached by email at kate (dot) sheppard (at) huffingtonpost (dot) com and you can follow her on Twitter @kate_sheppard.