What Keeps You Up at Night?

Do you stay awake at night trying to figure out how to manage the subsurface plume emanating from the BP well in the Gulf of Mexico? I think Dave Russell might.

An environmental professional, Dave approached me and another editor about establishing a panel of like-minded individuals who want to combine their expertise and "solicit and weed through technological suggestions for improving the [oil spill] response." A kind of blue-ribbon panel (I was thinking green ribbon may be more appropriate.)

Anyway, I questioned whether environmental professionals would be interested ─ you know, what's in it for me? Recognition and maybe a plaque on the wall, Dave suggested, and, I guess, individuals would have the potential of paid work evolving from this volunteer assignment.

I tested the idea in a poll and about 83 percent of the respondents said they would participate in such a panel … if it was not too time-consuming. Wow. I'm impressed, even with the caveat.

But then I discovered such a panel already has been established: The National Incident Commander's Interagency Alternative Technology Assessment Program workgroup collects and reviews oil spill response solutions from scientists and vendors. You can send them a white paper at www.FedBizOpps.gov and they will evaluate the proposed solution.

So where does that leave the green ribbon panel? I think there still may be a place for such a body, but it would need to have a broader scope than just today's oil spill. Perhaps it could develop response plans for other manmade or natural disasters. Any ideas?

Posted by L.K. Williams, EPonline on Jun 21, 2010

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