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Feds Launch New Oil Spill Website

RestoreTheGulf.gov will serve as a centralized hub for information about the Deepwater Horizon disaster response and recovery.

The Obama administration has launched a new website to provide a centralized hub for information and resources about the Deepwater Horizon oil spill response and recovery.

RestoreTheGulf.gov, maintained by Unified Area Command's Joint Information Center, provides operational updates, news and data about the efforts across the administration to stop the BP oil leak and respond to its impact on the environment.

Eventually, the new site will replace the current official site for the response effort. In the meantime, information will be updated on both sites concurrently.

On the new site as on the old, people can find information for filing claims for damages and costs incurred due to the spill. Claims form in English, Spanish and Vietnamese are available online, as well as information about how to file claims. The site also tells people how to check on an existing claim.

BP has set aside more than $20 billion for claims related to the disaster, which occurred April 20 when the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, which the company was leasing, exploded and sank. Eleven workers died and experts estimate that tens of millions of gallons of oil spilled into the Gulf since then as the oil giant, environmental groups and federal agencies have struggled to control the spill.

In addition to offering information about BP claims, people can also use the site to find out about other federal, state and local assistance, as well as how they can get help from private sources.

It also provides information about long-term plans for economic and environmental restoration in the Gulf Coast region, which has been ravaged by the disaster.

For people interested in volunteering with continued clean-up efforts in the region, the site lists opportunities about how to get involved. It also lets people know how to report endangered wildlife or other concerns stemming from the disaster.

The site also breaks down details of current response operations by region, drilling down into specific states and localities on an interactive map.

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