The loss of wildlife has a huge impact on the economy of the Gulf Coast region. The fishing industry, in particular, has taken a devastating hit as a result of the BP oil spill, and is represented at No. 6 on the list of potential new BP logos.
Among fish species that support fishing businesses along the Gulf coast are snapper and grouper. Conservation group Oceana notes that gag grouper spawning peaks in early April and red snapper spawning starts in late May, peaking from June-August. In effect, the spawning season couldn't be timed worse, and these vital fishing industry catches could see their numbers depleted.
The latest count is that more than one-third of all federal fishing waters in the Gulf remain closed due to the BP oil spill.
The economic impact on fishing jobs -- as well as jobs in the summer tourism sector, and the oil and gas sector as the moratorium on drilling in the Gulf continues -- is at the heart of the one of the evolving controversies related to BP: when will it get its act together and pay claims from Gulf residents and Gulf businesses in a timely fashion.This controversy reached its apex this week in connection with attacks from President Obama on BP's plans to pay out a hefty dividend to shareholders. The President began saying last Friday that BP better not "nickel and dime" the Gulf coast residents and businesses while paying its shareholders hefty dividends.