(NBC) – For a second day the president promised help and recovery to a region facing a growing tide of oil and despair.
"Yes, this is an unprecedented environmental disaster, it's the worst in our nation's history, but we're gonna continue to meet it with an unprecedented federal response and recovery effort," Mr. Obama said after a tour of oil-stained Pensacola Beach.
In a meeting with the Coast Guard and military officials, the president was briefed on the clean up and containment.
Still, replacing the wetlands may be years or even decades away, and displacing the anger and blame could take even longer.
Meanwhile, the administration has promised to take over the claims process if BP doesn't set up an independent multi-billion dollar fund.
New documents released by the House Energy and Commerce Committee show BP made crucial decisions to cut costs and safety on the Deepwater Horizon rig prior to the disaster.
Just six days before the blast one engineer emailed it was "a nightmare well".
In his Oval Office address tonight the president outlined his plans to restore the Gulf Coast, pay claims to those affected by the spill and reduce U.S. reliance on fossil fuels.