We've all seen that computer-generated, Rorschach test-like inkblot — depicting the size of the oil slick — swimming out in the Gulf of Mexico on the evening news. Because of its amorphous state, and the fact that it is only beginning to make its way to shore, it can be hard to get a good perspective on just how big the oil slick is.

Enter Google Earth. The online global mapping system has found a unique way to make the 2,500 square mile black mass hit home. A new online feature, which can be found here, allows you to drop the oil spill over any city or region in the world. Drop it over Paris, and you'll see the oil slick extend northeast all the way to the champagne region of Reims. Drop it over Lafayette, and the oil covers the majority of Acadiana, extending south all the way to Marsh Island, and well east of Baton Rouge. Google Earth also shows the oil slick almost completely enveloping the Grand Canyon.

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