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Tuesday, 31 August 2010

More casualties of the BP oil spill!

Anger, depression, and helplessness are the main psychological responses being seen in response to the catastrophic Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and they are likely to have long-lasting effects, according to an interview in Ecopsychology, a peer-reviewed, online journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

In an interview published in Ecopsychology and conducted by Editorial Board member Susan Koger, PhD, Professor of Psychology at Willamette University in Salem, OR, Winter predicts a great deal of chronic depression, withdrawal, and lack of functioning among not only people directly affected by the events in the Gulf, but also people nationwide and globally who identify or empathize with their circumstances.

Describing the oil spill as "the absolutely worst 'environmental' disaster" in the history of the United States, Winter discusses her own personal attempts to deal with the negative emotions she is experiencing by focusing at times on hopeful, positive feelings related to the "tremendous self-sacrifice and generosity of spirit" among those affected by the spill and those helping to contain it and clean up the oil.

With the hope that the BP spill, with all the damage and suffering it is causing, will stimulate renewed environmental activism and changes in attitudes and behaviors, Winter says, "this disaster is probably just the kick in the pants that the environmental movement has needed."
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Maybe it's stronger in the US, being a little closer to home, but how do you feel about the oil spill? Has it made you feek angry or depressed? Why do you think others feel like this?

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