Natural Resources
Global Traveler|September 2021
Gulf Shores invests in its greatest asset: the environment.
TERESA BITLER

Tourism, the largest industry in Gulf Shores, Alabama, employed more than 54,000 in travel-related jobs and pumped $5.2 billion into the economy in 2019. Anything that threatens the area’s beaches and environment, like a hurricane, can have a devastating impact on the economy.

Over the years, Gulf Shores faced several devastating hurricanes, including Hurricane Ivan in 2004, but residents always knew what to expect — the power would be out for a while, the water would eventually recede and they could rebuild. But the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill shook everyone, according to Kay Maghan, public relations manager, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism. No one knew what to expect.

“We’re used to hurricanes, but an oil spill is a whole other deal,” she said.

Within days of the drilling platform explosion that leaked approximately 134 million gallons of oil into the Gulf, most future visitors to Gulf Shores canceled their hotel reservations, and no new bookings were being made. Maghan said the community quickly realized that without the beach and Gulf waters, they had no tourism industry. It opened their eyes to how crucial it was to protect their environment.

Ironically, the oil spill provided Gulf Shores and other affected areas with the funds to focus on sustainability. Just weeks after the April 20 disaster, scientists, economists and restoration experts began determining the extent of the damage, and a year later BP made its first $1 billion payment toward restoration. In total, the company responsible for the spill will pay trustees $8.8 billion over 20 years.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

RELATED STORIES

VOTE COUNTING TO START IN AMAZON UNION ELECTION

Vote counting in the union push at an Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, is expected to start as early as Thursday, but hundreds of contested ballots could muddy the outcome if it’s a close race.

2 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #493

GROUPS: CENSUS PRIVACY TOOL COULD HURT VOTING RIGHTS GOALS

The findings reinforce concerns that differential privacy will lower the quality of the data used for redrawing congressional and legislative districts. They also suggest that the census figures won’t support efforts to protect the power of minority voters and comply with court rulings requiring districts to have equal population numbers.

3 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #493

This Florida Drug Smuggler Escaped 7 Life Sentences—Twice

Dickie Lynn’s story shows how the drug war warped the Criminal Justice System.

10+ mins read
Reason magazine
April 2021

US SPACE COMMAND SITE TO BE LOCATED IN HUNTSVILLE, ALABAMA

The U.S. Air Force announced that the new U.S. Space Command headquarters will be in Huntsville, Alabama, after the state was selected over five others competing for the project, including Colorado, where Space Command is provisionally located.

3 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #481

The man who built the foundation

Perkins will always be remembered for ending the dark era

3 mins read
The Giant Insider
January 04, 2021

List of needs no longer imposing

With the regular season rapidly winding down, the needs of this team moving forward are pretty obvious, aren’t they?

2 mins read
Dolphin Digest
January 2021

Lowe Mill Arts

An Art Pilgrimage in Huntsville, Alabama

6 mins read
JUXTAPOZ
Winter 2021

Salvation Through Dictation

Charlotte attorney—who can’t type—has first novel published 61 years after stroke at birth

3 mins read
Charlotte Magazine
August 2020

Flo Milli Is Only Going Up From Here

The rising rapper from Mobile, Alabama, spins rhymes that sound like schoolyard taunts.

8 mins read
New York magazine
August 3 - 16, 2020

2020 Draft Profiles: Tua Tagovailoa

Round: 1 (5th overall) • Position: QB • Ht.: 6-0 • Wt.: 217 • College: Alabama

7 mins read
Dolphin Digest
June - July 2020