The 42-US-gallon oil barrel is a unit of measure, and is no longer used to transport crude oil ā€” most petroleum is moved in pipelines or oil tankers, according to Wikipedia.

The BP Gulf Oil Spill is reportedly spilling 12 to 24 thousand barrels of crude oil per day. That means that one million or more gallons of crude oil, per day, is spilling into the Gulf, or as much as 40 MILLION GALLONS to date. You know how much a gallon of milk is. You probably have one in your refrigerator. Now, spill a gallon of milk onto the floor every day, and do it for the next 110,000 years or so, and you have some idea of what BP has spilled into the Gulf of Mexico, so far.

BP, and our government and the naive news media are conflating the scope of the spill into terms the general public does not relate to, using an antiquated measure of volume — the barrel — that is not today used to carry crude oil, and is not well understood, and sounds a lot more modest than A MILLION GALLONS A DAY!

BP, oil companies, government, news media, give it to the public straight. Media, give the people analogies they can relate to. Do the basic math and use a little sense, instead of just passing on the handouts you receive. Multiply the result by the evils that a gallon of floating or sunk crude can do now and later to the natural environment, which includes people’s lives, and you have perspective on the scope of this mega-disaster.