>BP’s massive TOP KILL exercise, which held the hopes of the planet, in staunching the massive Gulf of Mexico oil gusher – HAS FAILED.
Top Executives had told us time and time again over the past few days that ALL was working according to plan, a case of yet once again MISLEADING the public. O – they assure us they do have an alternative plan ready to put into Acton within the next few days, and that they had been preparing for just this eventuality, in case the TOP KILL exercise did not work! Even though they assured us that this last failure had a projected success rate of 70+%
According to the NYT – Internal documents from BP show that there were serious problems and safety concerns with the Deepwater Horizon rig far earlier than those the company described to Congress last week.
The problems involved the well casing and the blowout preventer, which are considered critical pieces in the chain of events that led to the disaster on the rig.
The documents show that in March, after several weeks of problems on the rig, BP was struggling with a loss of “well control.” And as far back as 11 months ago, it was concerned about the well casing and the blowout preventer.
What the public wants is openness and honesty – is that too much to ask for? too much to expect? . We want and need to know exactly what is happening down there on the sea floor. We want to know what other mighty schemes you – BP – have in the pipeline – no pun intended. And IF you keep on mucking around down there without stopping this catastrophic oil and gas gusher – we want to know what the American Government intends to do about it? More and more information is coming to light about the problems this rig had – prior to the terrible disaster of 40 days ago. WHY can’t you tell the truth?
I seem to remember President Obama saying HE takes personal responsibility. He said that sometime just after he stepped off a freshly cleaned beach down in the disaster area….. freshly cleaned so he wouldn’t get his presidential shoes all covered in icky oil???
On Friday, President Obama visited Grand Isle Beach, Louisiana , after hundreds of workers had cleaned the beach area before the President arrived. Gov. of Louisiana Bobby Jindal observed : “This is the cleanest I’ve ever seen this beach. We saw a surge of activity the last couple of days. Let’s hope it continues now that he’s gone.”
BP’s next step is to install a containment cap on top of a lower marine riser package, or LMRP — a piece of equipment that sits atop the failed blowout preventer at the seabed.
Here is an explanation of how the LMRP cap is supposed to work, as well as other technologies BP is employing to attempt to bring the well under control:
* BP will cut off a pipe that extends out from the top of the LMRP and cover the opening with a cap and grommet seal. Oil and gas are currently leaking from two places along the pipe.
* The cap will be connected by pipe to a drillship at the water’s surface.
* The cap is intended to corral the majority of the leak and channel oil and gas to the ship through the pipe.
* BP expects the process to take four to seven days, though Chief Executive Tony Hayward said they would need about four days.
* Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles said BP monitored pressure data from the failed blowout preventer during the top kill operation, and determined that cutting off the pipe at the top of the LMRP would not have a significant impact on the flow of the leak.
* The cap effort is, in theory, similar to a much larger 98-ton containment dome placed at the end of the broken pipe in early May. That dome also was connected to the ship by pipe and was intended to corral and channel oil and gas to the surface.
However, too much seawater got inside, and mixed with natural gas at high pressures and cold temperatures and formed ice-like hydrates that blocked oil from flowing up the pipe to the ship.
Suttles said the smaller cap and seal are designed to exclude seawater and avoid the hydrate problem.
SO by what percentage does BP expect this plan to be successful? And if this fails whats next?
Tell the people living in the danger zone just how sorry you are, and how hard you are attempting to fix this ‘rare’ devastating accident…… convince them with media stories such as:
Improvements in drilling technology have greatly reduced the risk of the kind of offshore spill that occurred off Santa Barbara in 1969…. To fear oil spills from offshore rigs today is analogous to fearing air travel now because of prop plane crashes. –Steven F. Hayward, Weekly Standard (4/26/10)
And these messages didn’t entirely disappear after the Gulf of Mexico disaster unfolded. In its May 10 issue, Time magazine had a small box headlined, “Offshore-Drilling Disasters: Rare But Deadly,” which listed a mere four incidents–the most recent in 1988.
But it doesn’t take too much research to turn up a slew of other incidents that raise concerns: the Unocal-owned Seacrest drillship that capsized in 1989, killing 91 people; Phillips Petroleum’s Alexander Kielland rig that collapsed in 1980, killing 123, and more. The list managed to overlook at least three well disasters in the Gulf of Mexico that resulted in oil spills–two incidents off the Louisiana coast in 1999, and the Usumacinta spill in Mexican waters in 2007.
A previous Time.com story (4/24/10) had noted that the Minerals Management Service, which oversees offshore drilling, reported 39 fires or explosions in the first five months of 2009 alone; though the magazine said the “good news” is that “most of these” did not result in death. The website Oil Rig Disasters tallies 184 incidents, dozens of which involved fatalities–and 73 of which occurred after 1988.
Clearly there are different ways to measure such things, but it’s hard not to feel that Time’s point was to suggest that drilling disasters are really too rare to worry about.
Since the BP/Deepwater disaster, many news outlets have run investigative pieces detailing the long history of negligent oversight of the offshore drilling industry. But when the New York Times tells readers (5/25/10) about the “enduring laxity of federal regulation of offshore operations,” one can’t help but wonder why this apparently well-known problem got so little attention before the environmental catastrophe. (see FAIR link below)
The Deepwater Horizon blow out is NOT the first to happen. One could pray that it will be the last, and that this catastrophe will cause a total cessation of underwater drilling in the United States.
I seem to remember reading about Massive Underground Oil Reserves some time back, which promised a wonderful ongoing supply of oil…. all ‘drillable’ and accessible without ripping up the oceans floor. So why one must ask is the ocean bed being raped in this way?
America is sitting on top of a super massive 200 billion barrel Oil Field that could potentially make America Energy Independent and until now has largely gone unnoticed. Thanks to new technology the Bakken Formation in North Dakota could boost America’s Oil reserves by an incredible 10 times, giving western economies the trump card against OPEC’s short squeeze on oil supply and making Iranian and Venezuelan threats of disrupted supply irrelevant.
Better still, why not do away with our need for oil and invest in the new technologies?
Questions and more questions – and still no answers. Watch this space!