Costner, AREDAY partner for BP spill relief

Costner, AREDAY partner for BP spill relief
By: Andrew Travers, Aspen Daily News Staff Writer

Aspen-based American Renewable Energy Day (AREDAY) partnered with one of the resort’s best-known residents in New Orleans this week to raise money for ongoing relief efforts on the first anniversary of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Kevin Costner, actor and part-time Aspenite, headlined an AREDAY-sponsored benefit concert at the New Orleans House of Blues with his band, Modern West.

The “Harmony for Health” event sought to raise money to set up three medical clinics in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama, aimed at providing ongoing care to residents suffering the effects of oil fumes and dispersants. They also are training medical professionals specifically for chemical illnesses.

The event drew a crowd of about 800 and marked a slight departure for AREDAY, which over the last decade has focused on promoting renewable energy and solutions to climate change.

“AREDAY presents solutions to the problem of America’s addiction to fossil fuels,” Comins said from New Orleans. “If we were implementing renewable energy we wouldn’t have these kinds of catastrophes.”

The concert took place on Wednesday, the one-year anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon explosion, off the Louisiana coast, which killed 11 rig workers and spilled nearly 5 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico over the following three months.

AREDAY and other environmental groups plan to use the spill disaster, which unfolded over Earth Day weekend in 2010, annually to highlight the dangers associated with offshore drilling in years to come.

“It’s ironic that the nation’s worst environmental disaster occurred over Earth Day weekend and was spawned by our dependence on fossil fuels,” Comins said.

Along with Costner, the event featured performances by local New Orleans musicians, comments from area politicians, and Ginna Kelly, Aspen’s “green girl” on channel 19 and co-owner of

A previously little known environmental venture of Costner’s gained worldwide attention following the spill. His company Blue Planet Solutions created a centrifuge technology meant to separate oil from water after spills. Oil companies hadn’t bought into the technology before the spill; Costner claimed much of the damage to the gulf and its wildlife could have been avoided if they had. Last week, Comins and Costner visited three sites where the technology is now in place in the Gulf.

This year’s AREDAY festival, the eighth, will be held Aug. 18-21 in Aspen. Comins said CNN founder Ted Turner already has committed to return to the event, and said they will be announcing their full lineup of events soon.

Other sponsors of the New Orleans benefit included The Sierra Club, Natural Resources Defense Council, Blue Water Solutions and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.

2 Responses to Costner, AREDAY partner for BP spill relief

  1. ольга says:
    March 19, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    Hello! I love you!

  2. tiphaine says:
    March 23, 2012 at 8:37 am

    Tank you keke…
    Morden west est vraiment super!! continuez a nous faire du bien avec votre musique.tiphaine une fan qui aimerait te revoir mais cette fois ci a Nantes……
    merci keke et a Morden west


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