As I reported last week, the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is still flooding our waters with a plume of toxic chemicals. Based on the most recent Coast Guard estimates, 4 million gallons of oily water have been recovered from the spill and no one actually knows how much more is still dispersing across the Gulf of Mexico. One blog says that 3.5 million gallons of oil have spewed into the Gulf since the oil rig exploded and sunk. For up to date, first-hand accounts by the Coast Guard, check out this website.
So what can you do to help? Well, one small nonprofit out of San Francisco has come up with a really fascinating idea to clean up oil spills. Matter of Trust collects hair from salons, individuals, and even fur from animals across the US, Canada and other places. Then they stuff the hair into recycled pantyhose that people also send in. The resulting hair "booms" look like funny sausages but are great at soaking up oil. Check out this info brochure. Hair naturally soaks up oil, that's why we find ourselves taking showers and using shampoo, which degreases our hair. Think about it, this is also one of the reasons why wildlife are so terribly injured during oil spills - the oil adheres to their fur and feathers. So why not use our hair to soak up some of the oil in the Gulf of Mexico? Here are instructions on how to help out. And this video is absolutely amazing! I can't believe the demonstration part of it when they show how the oil is soaked up! This is so cool and simple.
I'm not sure that I'll be cutting my hair for this. I cut off about 11 inches of my hair over 5 years ago for Locks of Love and had a blast running around in Costa Rica sporting super short 3-inch long hair, but I don't think I'm ready just yet to do that again. Here's what that looked like:
But I do have some old nylons that I could donate! Will you help?