In 2002, one of my HGTV staff read an article on the web about a man that had found the miracle solution for cleaning up oil spills in the ocean. He claimed that all you had to do was to put paraffin flakes on the oil and it would all gather together in one concentrated mass and you could simply lift the paraffin out of the water, oil and all. Of course the governments didn't listen to him for the big oil spills, so we decided to test it.
It worked surprisingly well. We used regular motor oil in water in small bowls, but you could lift it out leaving almost clean water. It didn't work at all with an oil spill on concrete. Will it work on a large scale with crude oil in the ocean? I don't know, but I would certainly be willing to try it to get oil out of a fish pond or lake. I have no idea how it works, but it works and the paraffin is completely environmentally harmless.
In 2005 I came across a truely environmentally friendly way to clean and decontaminate oil spills on concrete and asphalt with a product called Oil Lift and in 2015 I was introduced to their their full scale oil remediation booms designed for garage floors as well as oceans -- it attracts the oil and repells the water into cloth booms simply sweeping the oil right off the top of the water.