BP has dumped hundreds of thousands of gallons of dispersant on and below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico in an effort to keep oil from reaching land. But the exact ingredients in those dispersants, which some fear could harm ecosystems or human health, are still being kept from the public.
The company that makes the Corexit brand dispersant being used, Nalco Holding Company, has publicly denied that it refuses to disclose the ingredients. Nalco bases its denial on its assertion that it has disclosed the ingredients to EPA. But even in the press releases claiming disclosure, Nalco failed to disclose the chemical identity of the ingredients to the news media or public.
But after BP and Nalco disclosed the chemical identities of the ingredients to EPA, the agency ordered BP to stop using the Corexit dispersant. BP refused.
- "Nalco Statement Regarding Disclosure of Information about COREXIT,"  Nalco release of May 28, 2010.
- "Nalco Releases Additional Technical Information About COREXIT,"  Nalco release of May 27, 2010.
- "Secret Formulas, Data Shortages Fuel Arguments Over Dispersants Used for Gulf Spill,"  Greenwire, May 24, 2010, by Paul Quinlan.
- "Chemicals Meant To Break Up BP Oil Spill Present New Environmental Concerns,"  ProPublica, April 30, 2010, by Abrahm Lustgarten.
- "'We Have Nothing to Hide,' Oil Dispersant Maker Says,"  Greenwire, May 28, 2010, by Paul Quinlan.