Oil Spill Officially Messes with Texas, Washes Tar Balls Ashore

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Tar balls found on the beach in Pass Christian, Mississippi

REUTERS/Sean Gardner

A small number of tar balls washed onto a Texas beach, which means the spill has affected every single Gulf state.

The Associated Press reports that a “bucket’s worth of tar balls” hit the beach, measuring about five gallons. The tar washed ashore on the Bolivar Peninsula and on Galveston Island, though officials do not know where the oil originated.¬†Five gallons is a minuscule amount compared to neighboring states, but Texas officials still insisted that BP will pay for any cleanup. Officials are looking into Hurricane Alex, local weather and Gulf ships as possible sources for the tar balls.

Affected regions now span 550 miles from east to west, ranging from Florida to Texas. Oil first reached land on April 29, and shows no sign of stopping soon.