Twenty years on, the iconic oil spill remains an expensive ecological disaster.
When people think of big oil spills, they think of the Exxon Valdez. Twenty years ago, the oil tanker spilled its load off the coast of Alaska, and images of oil-slicked birds hit the news at a time when environmental awareness was quickly rising in the United States.
The accident became a lightening rod for green groups and lawmakers, but has also prompted hundreds of scientific studies looking at the implications of the disaster on local people, the ecosystem, remediation practices and oil spill response. Nature takes a look back at the disaster, and finds out what the situation is today.
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