How could the Gulf Stream affect oil spills?

Computer-generated simulations show oil spills off the southeast coast could travel fast in the Gulf Stream or hit beaches depending on spill sites. (Simulation by J. Emory Parker/The Post and Courier). In what’s thought to be a first for a media organization, The Post and Courier used government programs to simulate more than 1,000 oil spills through this dynamic area, discovering that spills would wreak havoc for hundreds of miles and make cleanup nearly impossible. The Gulf Stream in effect becomes a high-velocity pump. Simulations show spills devastating beaches in the Carolinas, with North Carolina’s Outer Banks especially vulnerable. The simulations are part of a larger look at the Gulf Stream and how it affects everything from weather in Charleston and London to sea levels on the East Coast. If it slows down, as some scientists fear, many East Coast cities could suddenly see greater sea rise trends than predicted. Video Courtesy: Post and Courier | YouTube

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