BP Says One Oil Leak of Three Is Shut Off

Crews were able to conduct a controlled burn in two of the most concentrated areas of the spill, as a device designed to capture the leaking oil was on its way to the site.

Comments: 125

  1. the most important question we can ask now is:

    Why are we still drilling for oil? why risk befouling our one and only planet, our only water source?

    Obama--consider the longterm consequences and reverse your decision to expand offshore drilling. The more drills we have, the more chances for this to happen.

  2. Spill, Baby, Spill !!!!!

  3. We're 120 days from hurricane season. Hurricane clouds can pick this oil up and drop it from Atlanta to timbucktoo. Think. If it is on the beaches or offshore the wind will take it inland to coat every thing with oil, alive or not. BP NOW SAYS IT WILL BE ANOTHER WEEK BEFORE THE DOME CAN WORK. So you create Frankenstein and the only one who can stop him from killing the Villagers is the scientist and he's a BP engineer with an Abby Normal brain. We are standing here waiting for our home to be destroyed and it all balances on BP engineers. Just our lucky, lucky, lucky day in Dixie.

  4. So it sounds (albeit prematurely) that improperly poured cement might have been the cause for the explosion. And Haliburton was responsible for pouring the cement, so how is it not Haliburton's fault in some way?
    This is completely bogus and they're all liars and to top it off they're all protected by our Congress! Ack!

  5. Comment :
    The timing of this devastating ecological disaster is suspicious , coming shortly after
    President Obama declaration that new offshore drilling will be allowed , and necessitates a thorough investigation from
    President Obama.

  6. Is there any reason why a company, intent on adding millions to their fiscal reports, wouldn't consider developing a filter containment boom that could be deployed by the National Guard whenever an oil platform capsizes, explodes, springs a leak or all of the above? In a classic case of life imitating art, anyone familiar with the projects of Christo remember his wrapping the islands of Biscayne Bay with 6.5 million square feet of pink polypropylene fabric; the installment lasted for two weeks, so there's longevity in this initiative ... the only thing preventing anyone from kick starting this environmentally friendly project is an extremely short attention span.

  7. Can someone explain why drilling below 22,000 feet is significant?

  8. One question I have never heard or seen is this. What function does the oil serve where it is, beneath or within the continental plates? The Earth is a highly diverse and complex world of interconnections. What we call "nature" is complex beyond reckoning. Everything serves multiple purposes in maintaining the delicate balance that allows for "life" as we know it to exist. What are we screwing up by removing oil from it's deep resting places? We know that bringing all that carbon out is changing the ether and the water, we don't know how its removal affects land masses.

  9. so nice to hear from Halliburton again; do we know Dick Cheney's whereabouts at the time? Maybe he was shooting stuff...

  10. The Gulf of Mexico is an awful lot larger than Prince William Sound, and it's currents are driven by the main Atlantic Ocean currents... and since this leak is 40 some miles out to sea, in deep water, and since the leak originates a mile deep, the whole Atlantic basin comes into play when figuring the dispersion of this slick. To watch the day to day push and pull on this oil is to realize that strong currents are acting upon it. Of course, BP is going to downplay the size of the leak, especially when they have strong natural dispersion acting on the slick... unless this oil is driven ashore in a strong way, they prefer to pretend it is not such a large leak - while mother nature hides the truth for them. They are also hitting this oil with chemical dispersants that will cause the oil to sink to the Gulf bottom... without ever surfacing. The truth is clawed out of statements about the blowout preventer... it did not function at all, so the only thing limiting the 150,000 barrels per day capacity of the well is the bent and mangled riser lying on the Gulf floor. To expect that somehow the pipe is magically holding back 97% of the deep well's high oil pressure in it's 800 foot torn section lying on the Gulf floor is ludicrous... oil is making it's way all the way out the end of that pipe. The FSU professor's estimate of 18% of oil pressure escaping from the riser sounds one heck of a lot more plausible and that is still a miracle of sorts.

    I agree with the post that calculated some 15 million gallons of oil has been released already, and all the attempts to capture this one million gallons per day are just as likely to create a much bigger leak (maybe MORE likely) as they are likely to succeed.

    All the while this slick grows it looms larger and larger as potential for landfall ANYWHERE in the Gulf, certainly anywhere on US coast. Right now, it looks quite plausible that before summer is done, this slick will make landfall EVERYWHERE the US touches the Gulf... and Cuba also.

  11. amazing to think a $500,000 investment could have prevented this. wonder what genius decided against it.
    guess they figured if all goes right we save $500,000 if all goes wrong our stock will plunge and we'll destroy the environment and ruin lives, ok i see the logic now.

  12. Could we please have more media attention and headlines on this subjet? This is also a very serious issue. One life, one planet.....please let's joing efforts and clean this up!

  13. This coverage remains remarkably credulous. Am i supposed to be excited that this dome, which may or may not work, might be installed 7-10 days from now? Seriously? where is the pressure on these people? this is not a mail in box top requiring 7-10 business days to process, it is a rig spewing oil into the ocean. Where is the sense of urgency?

  14. how to stop leakage in riser pipe:

    lower steel-cylinders of liquid nitrogen into riser pipe at point of leakage, then allow decompression to freeze the upward gushing liquid content

  15. So this was caused because BP was trying to save money? DISGUSTING but oh so typical. Sue these bastards for all they are worth and put them out of business. I know for sure I will NEVER visit another BP station in my lifetime and will add it to the list along with Exxon/Mobil and Shell!

  16. Hopefully, against all odds, the oil leak will be contained much sooner than anticipated and the people in those areas and wild life can get back to living their lives.

  17. We need to know what BP is doing and why it will take another week to sink the domes? We have maybe 120 days until hurricane season and those clouds will pick up the oil and spread it north on to people's land still unconcerned about our disaster. I would like interviews with BP engineers explaining exactly what they are doing, how it may function and why it is taking so long. I don't want references to god or how lucky we now have a north wind. This is going to affect you, you just haven't connected your puzzle yet. Where is the news, the BP officials explaining exactly what they doing now?

  18. The recent spate of pro-BP news stories and thumbsuckers - such as the very poor thought piece by Broder and Zeller this morning - may be topped by this:

    "BP, the company responsible for fighting the spill, spent Monday preparing possible solutions to stem leaks from an undersea well off the Louisiana coast, but high winds and rough seas forced delays in implementing them."

    Responsible for fighting the spill? This elides a crucial piece of info, doesn't it? Or did the hole drill itself? How about BP, the company responsible for the spill, is fighting it... To make BP sound like the fireman when it was the arsonist is no mean feat.

  19. Obama should have been all over this from day 1. It took him 12 days to react, 12 days people. Makes you wonder why he waited so long to start the clean-up....was he assuming that BP was going to do it? Was he thinking that if he let it go it would help support his agenda?
    12 days people. If Obama had reacted with the speed and determination as he did with his health care bill the spill would not have hurt the enviornemt.

    By the way where is the Environmentalist outrage to his inaction?

  20. These are a lying bunch of lying liars. Driving along the MS Gulf Coast yesterday, my brother and I smelled fuel. You can smell it in Theodore, AL (LA aka Lower Alabama). If it's not that big of an issue, why is it we can smell it more than 30 miles away from a "Light Sheen?" These politicians have their pockets lined with OIL. Get it folks. The only ones telling the truth don't have a dog in this hunt.

    Gov Barbour and Sen Taylor have been drinking too much Crude Koolaid.

  21. As many times as we have had oil rigs damaged or explode creating giant oil spills, why hasn't the oil industry realized that this issue needs to be addressed now and that they should be prepared to contain these spills early rather than later after the spills cause so much damage. One could argue that they didn't know that the spill would grow to be this big or that the seas would be this rough, but why not? As the Boy Scouts say, "Be Prepared!"

  22. This all happened before, in 1979, under the ocean in the same gulf with the same kind of pressure-related mechanical breakdown, a failed blowout preventer. Amazingly, it's been largely forgotten about, erased from the collective memory by various other oil-related traumas, including the Exxon Valdez and the retreat from Kuwait. Ixtoc 1 was the second-worst crude catastrophe. The gusher took 10 months to stop and discharged at least 140 million gallons of the stuff. The same fixes were tried then as now - and most failed, such as refitting the BOP and lowering a collection cone – and some others that haven't even been mentioned yet, like dropping thousand of steel and led balls into the well... Only after drilling at least two relief wells was the flow finally staunched. One would like to believe that oil exploration technology has improved since then. But no one should hold their breath....

  23. 1. Joy: Why are we drilling for oil and natural gas? Because our economy depends on it. Do you not drive a car? Heat your home? Take mass transportation? Have electric lights? Paint your house? Use plastics?

    8. Baruch: You could ask the same question about water reservoirs. Do you have a problem with drilling for water? What purpose does the oil serve in reservoirs thousands of feet deep in the Earth's crust? Absolutely none. You produce oil from a reservoir rock like sandstone and water creeps up to take its place. That's it. Perhaps you see it as "raping Gaia", but it has no adverse effect at depth, other than a slight subsidence of the seabed which occurs in some places.

  24. Halliburton involved once again.

    How is this all going to translate to the consumer ?

    I'm guessing that the purchase price of Gasoline and all other Petroleum products (that's practically everything) will probably rise. After all, you can't expect shareholders to be responsible for their company's catastrophic disasters / misadventures - can you ?

    I can !!! But, will they ???

    If the consumer's prices do go up, will the 'responsible' companies also be awarded "bailout money / loans" (because they are too big to fail) ???

    If prices do rise / the 'responsible' companies get "bailed out" I think we as citizens / consumers also deserve to be compensated for damages / losses.

    As a matter of fact, I think we as citizens / consumers deserve to be compensated for damages / losses wrought by the nightmares that the our Government, the Financial Industry, the Insurance Industry, the Federal Reserve System and the Automobile Industry masterminds caused earlier.

    But, that's just me - I'm just sayin'.

  25. Why is the US military being used as a clean up crew for the OIL industry?

    Where is the 24/7 OIL INDUSTRY sponsored HAZMAT & Catastrophes crews & where are the plans for such catastrophes or any contingency plans for a scenario like this?

    Where is the Accountability & Responsibility and will BP actually pay for this? NOPE- they screwed the Texas City workers that were injured from MANAGEMENT INCOMPETENCE at the TC plant and the families of diciest workers, SHAFTED - Excuse for not paying a responsible amount, the workers knew the dangers of plant work. Duh, that is why they work for you, because of the danger and the need to work!

    Government wont do much, this will go to court & the Corporate Activist judges will kiss butt and favor Big OIL, Supreme Court- 5 Neo-Conservative Justices infavor of Corporate ruling.

    Still BUSHED! 2010! Incompetence Rules!

  26. Face it folks--the truly rich care nothing about you and I. If the rig exploded and oil leaked, no big deal. Their pals in government will take care of them. Oil still greases all wheels and, alas, alack, Obama is as much pro-oil as Palin-- I know, he says he's against corporate power and Wall street but the man is a dyed in the rich man's friend. Think Prescott Bush or Bill Clinton. Jefferson warned about these folks--read up on him--sadly, Hamilton,his arch foe, the Hobbesian, prevailed.

  27. Ah, Halliburton again. Well, they should be flush with cash after all the overcharging they did to the US Military in Iraq. Make sure that the lawsuits target them big time! Of course, there should be no tears shed for BP either!

  28. Why is it getting very difficult to convince people in the leadership to shift to alternative fuels? We have shown that fossil fuel is backward and dirty. Water and oil don't mix unless we both boil them where we always get seared in the process.

  29. I was with Cameron when a similar incident occurred and the BOP (Blowout Preventer) was activated on the drill stem in the Bay of Campeche. Two things were discovered with this. (1) Operator error by the PEMEX Driller caused the BOP to fail. (2) Cameron supposedly applied a fix in 1979 in case this happened again.

    In this current situation here in Louisiana, the investigation will be ugly and probably point to the Transocean crew and BP. The management by BP and Transocean is suspect but this is not the only Transocean rig offshore. They are one of the largest drilling firms in the business. With the current mindset in the industry in U.S. Waters, without new regs and standards this may happen all over again.

  30. Mobile's cbs affiliate (wkrg.com) reported BP said it will stop one leak tonight and have a dome set by this weekend. BP said it had nine submarines working at the sight. The oil is now lapping into the marsh fingers of the Chandelier Islands. Gone. We have no way of knowing if anything BP is saying is correct but this is the only information provided today. Great chance to teach your child southern geography. You only need one black crayon and they can color in the dreams and aspirations with jet black ink as the purge crawls east and possibly west toward Texas. There is no way to know at this juncture. Wish us luck.

  31. Global Warming.... Toxic Oceans... The rape of our only home Planet Earth Continues. We are now witnessing the slow genocide to the Oceans all for the almighty dollar. What kind of world are we leaving for our children and the future generations to live in and enjoy? But don't worry children we'll clean it all up and well be sure to make you think were gonna pay for it all. But the truth is with the new shortages the oil companies are going to fabricate this summer your going to end up paying for it at the pump because the price of oil is now slowly on the rise.

  32. Apparently there is no reason to increase pump prices of gasoline and other petroleum products if we can afford to waste all those crude oil in the waters of the Gulf.

  33. Interesting how the headlines and hoopla have shifted from the oil leak, about which we are all helpless, hopeless and poorly informed, to the NY terrorist who is a solvable problem and a bona fide bad guy about whom we can run countless columns of info. As a threat to civilization the oil leak is a bit nastier, but it is hard to put a face, much less a childhood, on a corporation. Would it be possible to personalize the leak a bit, say by introducing the public to the flesh&blood folk who made the decisions, designed the equipment, decided the budget for this catastrophe. What sort of childhood destroys the world?

  34. This is Obama's Katrina.

  35. Ya so that 70 ton containment dome we saw pictures of yesterday is going to be dropped through 5000 ft. of water directly over the leak (or leaks), suck up all the oil, pump it to the surface into ships waiting to take it away.

    Anyone out there got any idea how you stabilize a 70 ton piece of iron from 5000 ft. away and keep it positioned over the leak (leaks)?

    Am I the only one who thinks we are being conned by our friends at "Beyond Petroleum"?

  36. My friends,
    Alternative energies don't make as much money as just pumping free oil from the earth does, and not as fast. That's why government won't invest on it. Haven't we seen for the last two years what leaders and the big business are made of and capable of? They are thieves, pure and simple. People don't go to work for corporations because they want to help their country, society or whatever. They work for corporations because they have no morals, and that's where they belong. Americans have forgotten that the system in this country is a capitalism out of control system, and in a situation like that, there are no rules, no doing good, no common sense, nothing. It's profit for profits and they don't care about anything. What about Wall Street? How is that Wall Street still exist since what they did? They were selling air, the whole thing crashed, and people paid the bill! In Greece the society is burning cars for a lot less than that.
    It's all a big circus, a Disneyland, where nothing is really what it seems to be.
    You know what? No one at BP, Haliburton or the government really cares about the spill because everyone there will be retired and filthy rich in 10 years. Why they would care? They want it now, a Ferrari, a chateau in France, a private jet, fancy dinners, and they get it. The fastest they make their millions or billions, the better. They are not the kind of people who care about the sunshine, the wildlife, the air, the fisherman, the future. All they care, just like any previous ruler in the history of mankind, is what they have and how to guarantee they will have more until they die.
    Don't expect solutions from any of them.

  37. It would be more informative to have had an estimate of exactly how helpful the weather change has been in terms of results. The probable answer, unfortunately, is that just a miniscule amount oil has been recovered under these improved conditions and that the rest of the effort is proceeding at its unavoidably slow pace.
    BP had no plan for a failure of this magnitude and that is crystal clear.

  38. The Dome sounds an awful lot like the "Cone of Silence" from Get Smart (and we know how well that worked...), but from the photos it looks more like something out of Water World or Mad Max (Beyond Petro-Dome?). Perhaps we're already arriving at that post-Apocalypto place...or is this just training day?

  39. Mike Papantonio is the perfect example of how one lawyer's irresponsible actions gives the entire profession a reputation for being sleazy.

    First of all, unless I have missed something, the cause of the blowout and subsequent environmental disaster has not been determined. I of course am assuming the Mr.Papantonio is not a clairvoyant drilling engineer. Second, since the cause has not been established, there is no way that Mr. Papantonio can prove that the "$500,000 Valve" could have prevented it. Finally, where is Mr.Papantonio's proof that Dick Cheney was involved in some sort of conspiracy to prevent the "super valve" from being intsalled. Where is the evidence that supports his accusation? He goes on to say that "speculation is rampant". That is not surprising since he is the one doing all of the speculation. Make no mistake, I believe that BP is liable for the cleanup and damages to the working people this disaster caused. They should be forced to shoulder this responsibility even if it forces them into bankruptcy. If laws have been violated, BP executives should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. But until the facts are in, it is pretty clear that Mr.Papantonio is using this situation to feed his immense ego and boost his radio program ratings. Let him bring forward the facts and proof of his accusations against Cheney, and I will be the first in line to condemn the former BP. His performance is shameful and a disgrace to the legal profession. All he is doing is fanning a lot of emotions with absolutely no facts to sustantiate his claims.

  40. Obama administration failed the country in it's response.
    The following link gives information about a technology that was part of the national response plan for GOM spills and yet when the spill happened it turned out the administration had never bothered to buy any of the needed equipment. Much of the oil could have been safely burned on site at the spill but Obama blew it and chose to spend money on GM and Chrysler as well as other wasteful projects rather than the few million dollars it would have taken to protect our shores. Most dreadful administration EVER!


  41. Well, these Gulf States voted for Drill, Baby, Drill Palin, who is strongly against environmental protections and federal bailouts So I guess, these folks in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama will not expect the federal government to clean up the mess or bail them out. Right?

  42. Holy Cow...

    The Coast Guard is involved? TParty unite to stop this uneccessary government intervention. Hold a rally right along the shoreline in the Gulf States, they will welcome your participation in acting as a human oil containment wall. I forsee hundreds of thousand of Tparty participants physically eating the oil saving us from government waste. Quick, spread the plan to the entire Gulf Coast community.

  43. The media, BP, government etc don't seem overly concerned about these mysterious "chemical dispersants" being pumped out under water.

    Twice a year, ever year, I frolic in the waves of the gulf coast... I can't imagine it will EVER feel the same. Blech. But at least I am not a deep sea creature inhaling the "chemical dispersants."

  44. They couldn't drill the safety shaft in the coal mine because of methane and now it takes ninety days to drill a shaft to cap the well if the dome doesn't work. Republicans gave you an MMS which bought cocaine with tax dollars and did each other at sex parties in their offices rather than their jobs which would have included ensuring oil rigs don't blow up and murder eleven people. Republicans gave us deregulated Big Oil, deregulated SEC, FCC, EPA, CIA/WORLD BANK, FBI, NSA ETCETERA and the one and only Big Oil Plantation hand delivered by Cueball. Why would you elect another Republican? Why?

  45. According to one news item, BRAZIL requires safeguards for off-shore oil drilling that BIG OIL blocked in the USA. Typical!

  46. I think the majority of Americans have become eco conscious and try to do their individual part in protecting and improving the environment. Sadly and dangerously, the same cannot be said for big corporations. Here's a chance for you to do something.

    Currently, the Federal cap on the amount oil companies must shell out for damages caused by oil spills is a mere $10 million per event. Senators Bill Nelson (FL), Robert Menendez (NJ) and Frank Lautenberg (NJ) are advocating for the liability to be increased and capped at $10 billion. Though BP officials have promised to pay whatever amount is needed for clean up, there is that current cap of $10 million. As Senator Nelson so cogently stated, “BP says it’ll pay for this mess. Baloney. They’re not going to want to pay any more than what the law says they have to, which is why we can’t let them off the hook.” Call, email and/or write your support of increase in liability (and you might want to ask what the purpose is to have any cap. However much it costs to fix this situation with alacrity is of critical importance.

  47. We should be caretakers of this planet not it's destroyers. It's hard to believe that some people still think it's a good idea to drill for oil off our coasts. Clearly some people are so concerned with accumulating wealth nothing else matters. If it isn't money then it must be blindness and total apathy. Are some people preparing for the rapture believing why bother we won't be here much longer. .
    Sadly for those of us who aren't in it for the money and are not contemplating the end of the world it is a very sad time watching the planet we love being destroyed little by little by beings who have no sense of responsibility, think wildlife is there for them to destroy if they so choose and care for no one but themselves.

  48. To have a sound plan for doing anything, one must include planning for any contingencies of significance.

    These oil companies have sound plans for oil spills, they do nothing until they are forced to comply with judgements against them for cleaning them up. They can maximize their profits and minimize their losses because they don't spend a dime until they must.

    The public are the ones with unsound plans. They allow oil companies to do pretty much what they want and when things go wrong they can neither undo the damage nor force the ones who did the damage to fix it. Sure they can sue and collect big sums but the damage to the environment and to the common wealth of the nation is never fixed. The oil does what it does and nature adapts as it does, and the public just hopes that it turns out all right.

    What's a sound plan? Don't let oil companies drill where they haven't the technology and the budget to fix mistakes before those leaks can create big environmental catastrophies. You cannot send an man down a mile under water to fix broken oil machinery and there is no really adequate robotical technology that can do so either. The oil companies spend all their money on high tech to rind and retrieve oil, not on fixing leaks, and neither has the public's institutions.

    The nation's lack of adequate planning, not the greedy oil companies, created this mess but nobody seems to notice.

  49. There is an enormous Gulf between the headline for this piece and the piece itself. It should be entitled "BP Admits Leak Could Grow Tenfold"; not "Great Weather for Cleaning Up Oil!"

  50. Let's all calm down and get a grip. In three weeks all this will be a memory. The best minds in the business are dealing with this. Relax people. Kudos to the Times for presenting us with a balanced point of view.

  51. Is any one else offended by so much of this article being focused on efforts by BP to maintain their "corporate image"? Comparing it to the problem Toyota had, with keeping consumer confidence is abominable. Consumer confidence? Like this is about where I will buy gasoline? To me the horror happening in the Gulf is a crime against life and I want to know more about what is being done to rescue the innocent living beings affected by the "oil spill" (sounds like just something that happens in the kitchen, not to worry, we'll clean it up) SHEESH! And, what can be done to KEEP THIS FROM EVER HAPPENING AGAIN?
    Oh, right, it's Halliburton, they'll get by with help from their friends. It will be business as usual in no time.

  52. How is it that every multinational company on the face of the planet escapes ever having to truly pay the piper? This is going to be just another taxpayer bailout. The cost of this ecological disaster will never truly be know, nor the economic toll, but you can be sure that British Petroleum will only pay a token price. How about permanently barring them from any future MMS lease offers.

  53. It's interesting that nobody has mentioned that BP has one of the worst safety records in the industry. Consider that just a few years ago they were also having significant problems with a pipeline project in Alaska. Those problems were found to be attributable to lax safety standards, shortcuts, and poor management. A lot of this came out in the wake of the departure of John Browne, their former CEO.

  54. still not...Beyond Petroleum

    Petroleum Beyond contol

  55. First, the possibility of 60,000 barrels of oil per day was rumored to be the case a few days ago, so BP officially underestimates everything, from their initial assessment of the largest possible risk (they claim they couldn't have imagined such a scenario), then the initial estimate of 1000 barrels per day when the feds were saying 5k, and now this possible reality. It seems they will never give a true assessment of anything, certainly not the true extent of the damages. I hope the judges keep that in mind later.

    Second, why is there even a cap on damages from a spill? If conservatives truly advocate for a free market, it should include accounting for the actual cost of damage that a business venture could result in. To cap damages is inherently socialistic because it assumes all costs incurred after the cap will be absorbed by the rest of society. Then again, corporations in general externalize cost and internalize profit, and are capitalistic only in profits but socialistic in damages. If oil drilling is to expand in the US, it should be nationalized. Start with seizing BP, for they have proven their incompetence.

  56. While I reflexively hate Big Oil as much as the next guy, I'm not sure why BP is taking so much moral condemnation when Transocean owned and operated the rig. It's akin to a passenger being blamed when the taxi he's riding in crashes into the duck pond in Central Park.

  57. I love how everyone just is loving the chance to smash BP. When the OPERATOR was TRANSOCEAN. Yes BP is liable under the contract and hence in legal terms it pays for everything. but BP ISNT THE ONE PRESSING THE BUTTONS. There are no "BP" engineers on the rig or "BP" toolpushers, nightpushers, drillers, roughnecks, dp / ballast control operators, yadda yadda yadda. The management of the rig is TRANSOCEAN. The regular day to day, sans inspections and such, is run by TOI. Somewhere there is a problem in TOI, but there is barely ANY mention of it in the NEWS. I guess thats what happens when the reputation of the largest operator in the GOM is on the line, as opposed to a Foreign petroleum company, but then... TOI is based from Switzerland! Gee, along with a whole slew of tax-evaders. Someone put the microscope on TOI's management and see what you come up with.

  58. So much for Dear Leader's recent Drill Baby Drill conversion.

  59. Impacts to the Gulf are already occurring:

    Here is a link to maps (published 2003) of some of the Fisheries and Protected Species (marine mammals and sea turtles) of the Gulf of Mexico that are being affected by this Earth Day Oil Spill in the Eastern Gulf.

    "Fisheries and Resources Affected by the Earth Day Oil Spill - Eastern Gulf of Mexico"

    [source: Dept. of the Navy. 2003. Marine Resource Assessment for the Eastern Gulf of Mexico Testing and Training Areas. Atlantic Division, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Norfolk, Virginia.]

    Not included in the maps is the Sargassum distribution in the Gulf. Sargassum is an important open ocean (pelagic) nursery habitat for species like dolphin fish (mahi mahi) and species of tuna.

    Also not pictured: the surface of Gulf waters where the planktonic zone of algae and small critters (base of ocean food chain) and larval/juvenile (source for adult fishery populations) exist.

    See also info about the Gulf Sturgeon Posted earlier.


  60. Wow, BP is underestimating the oil spill, what a revelation. NY Times please, please lead on this story and stop with the coy, silly optimistic and underreported coverage.

  61. How many of Louisiana's elected officials got funding from BP over the last 3 to8 years? Perhaps, this can explain some of the soft touch on lack of regulations for drilling safety.

  62. The boat identified in the picture as a fishing boat being put to work to contain the oil spill is actually a small workboat/crewboat of the variety operated by many oil companies in the Gulf. It is not a commercial or private fishing vessel.

  63. These guys are FOOLS. They put a rig in an extremely sensitive area (and just not because of the marshes in Louisiana, but check the Gulf Stream map. If that oil takes a hike, it will tag along THE WHOLE EAST COAST OF THE USA, across the Atlantic into the British Islands and on to NORWAY), and they never prepared any contingency plans for a worst case scenario. They are flying by the seat of their pants, improvising as they go. Why is ANYBODY still INVESTING in this outfit?

  64. From the article:
    "Federal officials have raised the possibility of a leak of more than 100,000 barrels a day if the well were to flow unchecked, but the chances of that situation occurring were unclear. "

    Is that correct? 100,000 BBLs? That's 4.2 million gallons/day, which might even exceed the Gulf War oil spill in 1991, the worst on record, worldwide. (1.5M tonnes of oil from Persian Gulf spill converts to 205,000 barrels)

  65. JB, Brasil requires that because we had a blowout that killed 11 people. We did not have a spill like this one, but, for the same reason why we are a leader in AIDS prevention, the acoustic shutoff valve was required: when is about DEATH, Brazilians (even the bloody politicians) become dead serious.

  66. This is just following the corporate script. God help us all.

  67. Everyone listen very carefully:

    In the short-medium term, the result of decreasing our drilling in the Gulf will be to increase the overall global risk of oil spills. Our demand for oil is not going to change over that period of time. If we decide to decrease drilling, we are going to have to substitute in the form of increased imports (at least until we can increase shale-based extraction). Meaning we will increase the demand for tanker-delivered oil (likely from the Middle East). Oil tankers have a much higher failure rate (on average, controlling for various relevant factors) than do oil platforms.

    Meaning, in short: if you really care about the environment in general and decreasing the likelihood of oil spills in particular, at least for the next few decades, you should support an INCREASE in regional (e.g., Gulf) oil drilling, not a decrease.

    NB: This is to say nothing of the fact that there are also job creation considerations.

  68. Our newspapers should be full of information on the subject of this oil "spill". It should not be shuffled to the back pages when the spill is one of the most awful and significant events of today. Nothing matters at all if our environment is not protected - the potential outcome of this is incalculable. What can we, the little people, do? We can drive less, walk and ride bikes more, purchase less in packaging, purchase no products that contain petroleum, oil and other derivatives. Today! And pray for increased consciousness from all, especially those in charge.

  69. This article is written by the same lead journalist & printed in the same newspaper that 24 hours ago said the gusher was no big deal. Who are we supposed to believe?

    Obviously, there's no reason to believe BP on anything. These journalists omit the fact that when the platform first collapsed, BP said the well was leaking 1000 barrels per day. Then, BP changed its story, & said the well was leaking 5000 barrels per day. Now, BP says it might be gushing 60,000 barrels per day.

    Clearly, we cannot believe BP. The question is, can we believe the NY Times? As much as I love the Times, & I do, I have to say its coverage of this story has been abysmally poor from the first day through today.

    How can you omit the fact that BP's original story was that the oil was leaking at 1000 barrels per day? This is the second textbook case of poor journalism on the same story in two days.

    Michael Radosevich

  70. "It's not our accident" will go down in public relations history as one of the dopiest and most damaging remarks ever made by a CEO. Words to make a weasel blush.

  71. I agree with poster #1 saying 'Obama--consider the longterm consequences and reverse your decision to expand offshore drilling.' But I had to chuckle sardonically as I tried to remember the last time U.S. politicians actually attempted to forge policy with sincere thoughts to the long-term consequences. Could the answer be...NEVER! No politicians seriously worries about the long term...they only think in terms of 2, 4, or 6 years depending on the election cycle they happen to be obsessed with.

  72. Let’s hope that the oil company executives got paid out with sufficiently large bonuses, earned by cutting corners, so as not to be unduly inconvenienced for this science fiction scale catastrophe. Perhaps this will get rid of those pesky fisherman, nature lovers, and tourists, who just get in the way. Seriously, if they did care about anyone else they would have had a plan in place. The fact is, executives are already paid out, and have no stake in what happens next to their large corporations or banks. An act of unspeakable violence has been done. What we really need to pray for is PEACEFUL change, because any non peaceful change will sow the seeds of its own illegitimacy, and only replace one problem with another .

  73. My god. What a nightmare.

  74. Norway and Brazil bought the 1/2 million shut off valve that operates by radio control remotely from the ship-- but in the US, the oil lobby weaseled out of it with the oily president and VP.

    They say it was too expensive.

    The CEO of BP Mr Hayward makes 5 million a year. There are 100 workers on a plateform and they probably earn $100,000 a year and that is 10 million nd the company has tripped the amount they spend on lobbying in 2009 to 16 million and the company makes a profit of many billions each year.

    Some argue that the oil and gas industry are the only "experts" that really inderstand the industry-- I think these numbers indicate that these industries cannot be trusted to have proper priorities for themselves or others.

    For their own sake as well as our own-- take any advise from them with a grain of salt. They are not the adult in the room. SHAME

  75. Before yet more habitat is destroyed, why not just plug this thing?
    Fill a few half dead freighters with the heaviest weights available and sink 'em! It's insane greed that's allowed this monsterous disaster to continue as long as it has!

  76. I guess the article I read on the Times page earlier today that explained how this disaster probably wouldn't be as bad as past disasters is now less than useless. What say, boys?

  77. The NOAA charts of the area show multiple munitions dumps in the area of the platform, and government mineral rights documents specifically state that there are unexploded munitions dumps in the area that may pose a problem for exploration. The charts and the documents are up at this link, plus an interview with a survivor of the explosion that may offer some other evidence:

    At the least, we need some more information about why BP felt it was safe to drill in an area of known explosives dumps. Was it possible that some of it could be triggered?

  78. CRIMINAL INCOMPETENCE....The American Tax Payer will Foot the Bill, the Supreme court have already established this precedent with the Exxon Valdez disaster, the Oil company will NOT even pay the fines awarded against them by the courts, they will just do the usual trick of Appealing Appealing appealing until they get to a Judge they have PAID to GET ELECTED!...(They never do). BP are TOO BIG TO FAIL and will be BAILED OUT by the American Tax Payer... Guaranteed. They may have to jack up their "Political Donations" for a year or 2 but that's no Big Deal that's BUSINESS AS USUAL.. NOTHING CHANGING ANYTIME SOON!....are you FOOLED?..

  79. Someone said that the CEO's could care less because they want to make the billions fast so they can live a wonderful life in a French castle or lounge in a gated community etc.

    This reminds me of the rich people in the movie about the Titanic -- the world is going to smithereens and any and all pearls, diamonds or whatever will get you nowhere.

    So these CEO's are screwing up the planet -- don't they have children too? Do they want to live in a world without other species, with wretched poor people clammering to rob them, filthy air, unstable weather?

  80. The U.S. government needs to speak to BP in the only language it understands. Start the fine at $25 million a day and void a percentage of BP's oil leases on government land for each day the spill continues. They'll have that well capped in no time.

  81. DC bogged down in BP blowout, the oil washes ashore on Capitol Hill, see:

    Deepwater Politics


  82. The environment destroyed for all time is that of the Confederacy. Drill, Baby, drill. There are four countries in North America. Sadly, two of them are in the USA. Let the rebels leave with their own mess.

  83. "This disaster confronts us squarely with the risks to which we expose ourselves and our environment any time we drill for oil. As a nation, we must stop and consider what we've done, and what we will do tomorrow.

    We must pause and reflect on what places can truly be considered "safe" for oil extraction, having the courage to recognize that in some, the risks are simply too great and the resources too precious to spoil. Elected representatives must keep the picture of this spreading catastrophe in mind as they consider the path to our energy future.

    America's energy needs are great. But so is our concern for the people and nature imperiled by our addiction to fossil fuel. It's time to redouble our efforts to move toward a future powered by cleaner, renewable sources of energy that make the planet a safer place for us and all the life with which we share it. The images from the Gulf are tragic reminders that we cannot afford to wait."

    Frank Gill, former president of the Audubon Society

  84. What's the holdup? Get the hoses in there and pump man pump. It doesn't have to be a perfect match, just get as much as you can that's spilling out. Other than that I think post 8 is worth a lot of consideration. Think of it this way. When you have ortoscopic surgury on your knee and they remove torn cartlidge you typically have bone on bone problems later?

  85. Bob ll - Hurricane season starts in 26 days not 120 days. And what an apocalyptic vision - petro-rain.

  86. This will end up like The Exxon Valdez. The company will get away with essentially little or no fine and no one will go to jail. This environmental mess will haunt the Caribbean for years. As a suggestion to President Obama make sure the justice department and state and local authorities get in on the game plan and go after BP with guns blazing and send those to jail with culpability in this fiasco.

    If President OBama does not he will loose a huge chunk of support and he will not recover for the next election. Remember this and rethink your plans to drill on the Atlantic coast.

  87. The Exxon Valdez oil spill was 10.8 million gallons, or 257,000 barrels of oil. 60,000 barrels of oil spilled per day is one Exxon Valdez oil spill every four and a quarter days.

  88. Obviously not a lot of scientists here... honestly these comments speak more to the status of education in America than they do to the BP disaster.

  89. "Mr. Nelson and the two Democratic senators from New Jersey, Frank R. Lautenberg and Robert Menendez, have introduced legislation to raise that cap to $10 billion, and to make sure that the new limit applies to this spill."

    The extent to which our politicians continue to play politics with a public tragedy is disgusting, but not surprising. The U.S. constitution forbids a bill of attainder, which these three Democrats say they will apply in their attempt for a new law cited above. But pandering, not leadership, and forget about statesmanship, is what got us here in the first place.

    Did anyone ask these three panderers why a limit on actual damages is reasonable or fair? And for which other industry has our pandering congresses been so generous as to cap actual damages?

  90. I watched CNN today and the entire day was spent "reporting" on this terrorist idiot in NY with the story of this oil spill which can cause several magnitudes of damage to our economy and ecosystems (much more than any terrorist ever could) pretty much reported on as an afterthought. Isnt this the same way the impending near economic collapse was missed by these so called journalists while they were pandering to their corporate masters. Maybe I am wrong but I do remember a time when there were real journalists who reported on real news. Now I do believe this terrorist incidence should be reported however it must be kept in perspective and not overly sensationalized by our so called news media.

  91. Why has no one brought up the idea of using an explosive charge in a shallow hole next to the well to collapse the pipe and stop the flow. Waiting for over a week for a box to only partially capture the oil and months to drill a bypass well seem overly complex compared to a few other more direct methods.

  92. BOYCOTT BP! Why is nobody saying this? America fought a war of independence, and it won!

  93. @ #3 "We're 120 days from hurricane season" actually hurricane season begins June 1st, we are 26 days away from hurricane season, fortunately June is usually a slower month.

    However this thing being there, it will pull hurricanes from the moon.

  94. $3 Gas Tax, with an equal reduction in federal taxes, perhaps say the first $30,000 of every single American does not pay one red Federal income tax.

    Here is what it provides, you let me know if its not a great idea.

    1. Reduces our oil usage, substantially in the short-run, and dramatically in the long run.
    2. Americans stop funding countries that do not like us
    3. Reduces our need to spend $750 Billion a year on military, for reasons of #2.
    4. Gives every ULTRA conservative Republican HIS choice on how much they want to give Uncle Sam. Purchase an electric car, save lots of tax dollars. Buy a Chevy pick-up, pay lots of tax dollars. What more do you you want, this give you, the taxpayer, ultimate choice.
    5. Smaller cars = less casualties = drop in insurance rates
    6. Improves our health - More walking, more biking, more running to places you want to go
    7. Improves our social connections. Your car is your island, whereas public transportation is your 19th century Facebook. Get out and talk to people, it does wonders!
    8. Gets people that currently do not pay taxes, to pay their share - drug dealers who have Hummers and drive 25,000 miles a year, and pay nothing, would then have to pay.
    9. Road maintenance would decease dramatically, one for the size of the vehicles would exert less force on the roads, two, less cars and people driving, a win win!
    10. Reduces the size of government, since IRS auditors could be removed, since it is hard to cheat the system...you don't buy gas, you pay your tax. Easy as that.

    I can go on, but honestly, this is what is needed to help remove our ugly dependence on oil, so we do not have to deal with things like this....and, it essentially costs Americans NOTHING, and actually would save Americans LOTS!

  95. The enormity of this disaster is staggering.

    Worst case leak rate (60,000 barrels per day) times best case time to drill a relief well (90 days) times 45 gallons a barrel equals 24 million gallons of oil spilled. That's more than twice as much oil as was spilled in the Exxon Valdez disaster (10 million gallons).

    If there is one lesson in this for free-market no-government Republicans it is this: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

    By which I mean: government regulations that force (yes, force) corporations to spend what is necessary up front to install safety devices, for example, like the $500,00 shut-off valve BP was able to lobby itself out of having to install always have and always will achieve what "efforts to control the damage to its reputation as a corporate citizen" never have and never will.

  96. Perhaps someone already said this but it's not just BP's fault. Sure it was BP's oil but who's rig was it? Who were the operators? Who was constructing (fixing) the cement barrier below the surface? Transocean as well as..excuse me..Halliburton??? Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. And if the federal laws need to be changed to include ALL parties associated with such distasters, then so be it. I'm not an oil company advocate Lord knows but let's look at all parties involved for fairness sake!!

  97. What did your reporters mean when they wrote, "could conceivably spill as much as 60,000 barrels a day ...?" Does than mean now? Tomorrow? Next year? If the sun don't shine? What?

  98. It saddens me that the truth is that politicians line their pockets with oil money while we have to watch the Gulf of Mexico being lined with oil and dead species. I'm sorry, Mother Earth.

  99. Correction:

    60,000 x 45 x 90 = 243,000,000 gallons -- 20 Exxon Valdez oil spills.

  100. http://pesn.com...

    If Paul Noel is right, the human species has drilled through the lock on Pandora's Box and unleashed the contents. Someone please tell me he's wrong.

  101. Apparently the editorial team has lost interest in the gulf episode, there is so much else happening... Any news on Tiger Woods?

  102. Goldman Sachs must be loving this. I just pray Congress and the public have the attention span to reform both the oil industry AND wall street.

  103. If this becomes a worst case senario, and if public opinion, courts of law, and our politicians come to the conclusion that BP is both liable and negligent they could face a fury of consequences from which they may not recover. Consider the risk evaluation oil companies will need to make with future deepwater oil drilling. It may make the technolology economically untenable with or without government regulation.

  104. Here's a revision of an old old exxon jingle you may remember,(that was later mimicked by other oil companies throughout the seventies,"OIL LEAKS TO POISON OUR AMERICA"

    When will we see a strong america....through a true and honest energy policy

    [email protected]

  105. The specter of what is likely to hit the eastern Gulf Coast is disgusting.
    As a teenager, I remember visiting Panama City, FL with my parents and enjoying their magnificent pristine white beaches.
    The water in the shallows was clear as a bell; you could see the floor of the Gulf, along with the fish and snails and underwater foliage.
    I remember being charmed by the white sand, as our beaches in Texas are a light beige color and the water is much more opaque.
    I remember attending summer camp in Bay St. Louis, MS, when we were treated to camping on a long pier extending out into the bay, under the stars so numerous it looked like you could reach up and pluck them from the sky.
    Once the oil hits the beaches, that magnificent world will be lost to generations.
    I've seen a resurgence of people saying that it's okay; so far, it hasn't been so bad.
    Well, it's not their livelihood threatened, as those coastal Louisiana and Mississippi towns find themselves in a panic.
    Their bays and estuaries and marshes are the most prolific farm for seafood in the Western Hemisphere, if not the world.
    They are just recuperating from the hurricanes, and now this, which could have been avoided, but for a desire to have a fatter profit margin.
    It just makes me sick to think about it.
    The companies need to understand something:
    They sneer at environmental concerns and bray about the perception that their many "professional experts" are not receiving enough respect.
    There is such a thing as the "cost of doing business" and they need to start considering that safer forms of drilling should be calculated into the cost of retrieval.
    I would hope this travesty would teach them a lesson, but somehow, I doubt it.
    It's too easy to slide back to drilling on the cheap.

  106. Hard to believe that any containment strategy or skimming oil from the surface will work with this huge volume of escaping crude. Hard to believe that anything technical can be done reliably in 5,000 ft deep water. What are the chances that the two relief wells to be drilled will be any safer? We may be looking at s problem that will plague the gulf for years, not months.

  107. Disappointed that the three top online stories are about the NYC bomb that did not blow -- while this ongoing story about an undersea well that continues to blow oil is secondary.

  108. What a fascinating news article! Here are the highlights that stuck with me:

    "... despite its efforts to control the damage to its reputation as a corporate citizen ..."

    "... considered a broad advertising campaign ..."

    "... lower-profile social media outlets to trumpet its cleanup efforts ..."

    "... has significantly stepped up its lobbying on Capitol Hill..."

    "... a frequent guest on the morning news shows, with a consistent message: 'It wasn’t our accident...'"

    "... It is a mixed message, advertising experts say..."

    "... the company was now 'considering some targeted advertising in the affected states'..."

    Thanks again for the free lesson in 'Public Relations 102: Damage Control'!

    Maybe if we stop covering the story, the oil will just auto-magically disappear as well?

  109. So there is a $75 million limit to the liability that BP has to pay for this spill? If this number is so very low let us pressure our government to either raise this amount OR cap "Big Oil's" profits per quarter. BP made a profit of 5.5 BILLION the first quarter of 2010!

  110. Why does the New York Times only express the size of the spill in "barrels" of oil, a unit of measure which hardly anyone outside the oil industry is familiar with, rather than "gallons" which everyone understands? Because its sounds so much worse? I don't know how many gallons are in a barrel, but I do know that when the NYT was reporting the possibility of 5,000 barrels a day, virtually every other news source was speaking of over 200,000 gallons a day. At that rate, 60,000 barrels a day would be over 2,400,000 gallons a day. Any coincidence that this is the same newspaper that is still running a "news analysis" saying the spill might not be all that bad? Gee, it sounds pretty bad, especially when expressed in gallons.

  111. Comparing this to Toyota's phantom acceleration thing -- man, that was stupid. Not even close.

  112. This story is getting smaller and smaller on the NYTimes home page. Soon it wont get any play at all. It will become "normal".

  113. I call it the "Chernobyl of the Sea". Very sad for nature and the destruction of the fishing industry.

  114. The terrorists who struck the US coast are us. I'm peeved that politicians seem surprised that this happened. To me, it's just a matter of time because nothing is 100% foolproof. Let's vote the Drill Babies out and push for new energy solutions. Instead of a chicken in every pot, how about a solar panel on every roof and a turbine on every skyscraper?

  115. In regards to Kerry, from Grand Michigan's post:
    It IS actually BP's responsibility to respond to the spill and NOT the OBAMA's....until it becomes federalized. So yes, we did expect the responsible party to, pardon the cliche, clean up after themselves.
    Its not Obama's fault that, an independent company, BP, tried to save some money for its shareholders. BP doesnt need federal authorization to cut corners.....so blame the shareholders. And if you think, "I'm would never invest in such a horrible company!" and shake your judging finger at Obama and everyone else, there isnt a mutual fund out there that doesnt have BP. We dont have anyone to blame but ourselves, people. Follow the money.

  116. Shame on those reporters who fail to vet the oil front "Gulf of Mexico Foundation" before giving it authority as a conservation group.

  117. A quickly built magic funnel designed to collect gushing oil flowing from a broken pipe a mile deep in the Gulf of Mexico.
    So this is what science boils down to -- using the equivalent of civil war technology to deal with a problem caused by the failure of so-called super advanced deep sea well technology.
    This fills me with so much confidence in the latest tech wizardry that I may go back to reading 1000-page books and listening to short-wave radio broadcasts for the information I need to gauge what is happening in the world.

  118. we may not have 120 days as the Farmers almanac predicts a Hurricane for he southeast around mid june

  119. Well, I for one am looking forward to learning the real facts from the all too rare Congressional hearing. Now we can find out the truth and get a quick and effective fix.

  120. This just makes me sick. And since it's a corporation doing the damage, the collective decision making that lead to this disaster gets difused. There will be some finger-pointing, a few fall guys/gals, and a "branding issue," but in the end the guys in BP accounting will blame management goals, the CEO will blame the board, the board will blame the shareholders, mid-management will blame the subcontractors, and the front line workers will blame anyone who drives a car. The public wll blame either Obama or the Republicans, depending on their political orientation.

    So many blameworthy people, it's no wonder there will be no accountability in the end. As I said, this makes me sick.

  121. And where is our incompetent President, doing stand up comedy for the press. 10 days people before he got involved.

    How's that change thing happening for you dimwits?

    This is Obama's fault plain and simple. He might not have caused the platform to blow up but he sure doesn't give a rip about the people in Florida, Mississippi, Texas and New Orleans.

    Stop playing golf and doing stand up routines and clean the spill up.

  122. Can someone explain why drilling below 22,000 feet is significant? Maybe because the lease only allows drilling down to 20,000 feet. NOTHING BELOW!

  123. Just a matter of time before this happened. Dripping flames of hell from the underbelly, the bottom tier, of America. We have become saturated with the blood of the devil. There is nothing anyone can do or could have done. With this catastrophe we are fast approaching the threshold to oblivion. It is very good of this paper to assuage the public with propaganda.

  124. BP Stated that having a leak this DEP is unprecidented. I guess they forgot LAST AUGUST 9th. The Montara Rig in the Timor Sea. Bp had to drill an intersecting well to stop the leak. Of course they had to miss on the first FOUR TRIES, before the FIFTH WELL INTERSECTED. 12 Weeks. Of course that was a different company doing the drilling. Just BP and Halliburton remained the same. But, as for depth, that well wasnt at 5000 feet, It was one and 1/2 miles, almost 8,000 feet.
    Hey Hayward, nice going SLICK!