NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The crude has stopped gushing and coastlines
are largely clear of the thick goo that washed ashore for months, but the impact of the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history will linger for years.
Six months after the April 20 Deepwater Horizon explosion, the environment and economy of the northern Gulf of Mexico region remain in a state of uncertainty, with overturned livelihoods, out-of-work fishermen, reluctant tourists, emotional anguish and untold damage to the sea and its shores.
It could be years before the spill's effects are understood. The science is largely scattered about what the roughly 200 million gallons of oil that spewed from BP PLC's blown-out well will mean for the animals and plant life that inhabit one of the world's most diverse bodies of water.
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