In brief The US administration has banned oil drilling in new areas of the US coast while the cause of the oil spill off Louisiana is investigated.
From the AP"The oil slick could become the nation's worst environmental disaster in decades, threatening to eclipse even the worst oil spill in U.S. history, the Exxon Valdez, the grounded tanker that leaked 11 million gallons in Alaska's Prince William Sound in 1989. The sheen measured about 70 miles by 130 miles as of Thursday, and officials expected to update that figure Friday.
It imperils hundreds of species of fish, birds and other wildlife along the Gulf Coast, one of the world's richest seafood grounds, teeming with shrimp, oysters and other marine life.
"This is a very, very big thing," David Kennedy, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, told The Associated Press about the spill. "And the efforts that are going to be required to do anything about it, especially if it continues on, are just mind-boggling."