FL Keys tar balls not linked to BP spill; MS results still pending - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

FL Keys tar balls not linked to BP spill; MS results still pending

KEY WEST, FL (WLOX) - Tar balls discovered on the Florida Keys shoreline Tuesday did not come from the Deepwater Horizon/BP oil spill. That's the finding from the Coast Guard Marine Safety Laboratory.

About 20 balls were discovered on beaches at Fort Zachary Taylor State Park, Smathers Beach in Key West, Big Pine Key, and Loggerhead Key in the Dry Tortugas National Park. The source of the tar balls remains unknown at this time.

"The conclusion that these tar balls are not from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill incident in no way diminishes the need to continue to aggressively identify and clean up tar ball-contaminated areas in the Florida Keys," said Capt. Pat DeQuattro, commanding officer of Sector Key West.

"We will continue to operate as a Unified Command and utilize funding through the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund until we have successfully identified any additional tar balls on the shoreline and completed cleanup efforts."

Dozens of tar balls have washed up on Mississippi's shoreline in Harrison and Hancock counties. Test results from the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality and the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources are still pending and have not yet been released.

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