Monday, June 14, 2010

Slick: Barack and Spilled Oil, Part 1

I'm trying to find the humor in this, because this is really infuriating and devastatingly sad.

Let's see if I can take this in some kind of order.

First, from Gulf Oil Spill "Could Go on Years and Years" ... by F. William Engdahl, dated June 11, 2010:

The Obama Administration and senior BP officials are frantically working not to stop the world’s worst oil disaster, but to hide the true extent of the actual ecological catastrophe. Senior researchers tell us that the BP drilling hit one of the oil migration channels and that the leakage could continue for years unless decisive steps are undertaken, something that seems far from the present strategy.

In a recent discussion, Vladimir Kutcherov, Professor at the Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden and the Russian State University of Oil and Gas, predicted that the present oil spill flooding the Gulf Coast shores of the United States "could go on for years and years ... many years." [1]

According to Kutcherov, a leading specialist in the theory of abiogenic deep origin of petroleum, "What BP drilled into was what we call a 'migration channel,' a deep fault on which hydrocarbons generated in the depth of our planet migrate to the crust and are accumulated in rocks, something like Ghawar in Saudi Arabia."[2] Ghawar, the world's most prolific oilfield has been producing millions of barrels daily for almost 70 years with no end in sight. According to the abiotic science, Ghawar like all elephant and giant oil and gas deposits all over the world, is located on a migration channel similar to that in the oil-rich Gulf of Mexico.

Farther down (slightly edited),

According to the Washington report of [investigative journalist Wayne] Madsen, BP statements that one of the leaks has been contained, are "pure public relations disinformation designed to avoid panic and demands for greater action by the Obama administration" according to FEMA and Corps of Engineers sources." [7]

The White House has been resisting releasing any "damaging information" about the oil disaster. Coast Guard and Corps of Engineers experts estimate that if the ocean oil geyser is not stopped within 90 days, there will be irreversible damage to the marine eco-systems of the Gulf of Mexico, north Atlantic Ocean, and beyond. At best, some Corps of Engineers experts say it could take two years to cement the chasm on the floor of the Gulf of Mexico. [8]

Only after the magnitude of the disaster became evident did Obama order Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano to declare the oil disaster a "national security issue." Although the Coast Guard and FEMA are part of her department, Napolitano's actual reasoning for invoking national security, according to Madsen, was merely to block media coverage of the immensity of the disaster that is unfolding for the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean and their coastlines.

The Obama administration also conspired with BP to hide the extent of the oil leak, according to the cited federal and state sources. After the oil rig exploded and sank, the government stated that 42,000 gallons per day were gushing from the seabed chasm. Five days later, the federal government upped the leakage to 210,000 gallons a day. However, submersibles monitoring the escaping oil from the Gulf seabed are viewing television pictures of what they describe as a "volcanic-like" eruption of oil.

But wait, there's more!

From New evidence undermines latest BP-White House estimate of spill size by Tom Eley, June 12, 2010:

On Thursday, BP and Obama administration efforts to conceal the size of the Deepwater Horizon spill were delivered another blow when teams of scientists estimated that the rate of the oil spill as of early last week was between 30,000 and 50,000 barrels (1.2 million to 2.1 million gallons) per day, and possibly higher.

The figures are staggering. Fifty-three days after the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon that killed 11 workers, somewhere between 63 million and 107 million gallons of oil have spilled into the Gulf of Mexico, according to the latest estimates. Between every five and nine days the spill equals the Exxon Valdez, which dumped about 11 million gallons into Alaska's Prince William Sound in 1989.

An Associated Press analysis notes that, even taking the low-end estimate, "if those 63 million gallons of oil were put in gallon milk jugs, they would line up side by side for nearly 5,500 miles."

Some scientists, among them Ira Leifer of the government-sponsored Flow Rate Technical Group (FRTG), believe that BP's decision to cut the riser pipe in order to siphon off a portion of the oil may have actually made the spill far worse. The well could feasibly release as many as 10 million gallons per day, according to a worst-case scenario revealed in paperwork BP submitted for each of its two relief wells.

It appears the spill will continue at least until mid-August — a minimum of 60 more days — and will perhaps drag on into September. This is when relief wells drilled diagonally to intercept with and plug the Deepwater Horizon's may be completed — although there is no certainty that these can succeed. If it has not done so already, the BP spill by then will have easily eclipsed the worst oil spill on record, the 140 million gallons the Ixtoc I rig dumped off of Mexico's Gulf coast in 1979 and 1980. According to marine biologists, the environmental and human impacts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill are already far worse than the Ixtoc I, which was mitigated by its location and favorable currents.

So, this is gushing far more oil than we have been told, and will continue to do so for at least a couple of months - and remember, it might go for years!

And, they've known it for a while...

From After weeks of delay, BP deploys sensors to measure size of spill, by Andre Damon, June 14 2010 (inside the quote is an important link):

Even in the face of the new estimates, Obama administration officials are seeking to minimize the rate of flow to the extent possible. On Sunday, [Coast Guard Commandant Thad] Allen put the flow rate at about 40,000 barrels a day, and claimed absurdly that the true rate will only be known "when we have it completely capped, control the flow, can actually measure" it.

At the same time, Allen defended BP, saying that earlier estimates "were never BP's figures. They were our figures. We have several different methods of trying to establish the flow rate, from taking overhead satellite imagery of the oil on the water to using very high resolution video to try to assess the volume of the flow and velocity at which it's rising."

What Allen did not mention is that earlier independent figures based on these methods — and in the face of attempts by BP to block access to imagery of the leak itself — conform to the current high estimates. Weeks before the government increased its initial estimate, independent experts analyzed a video of the spill to conclude that the well was leaking 70,000 barrels per day.

The Alabama Press-Register reported on a video released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) showing scientists discussing a rate of spill of 64,000 to 110,000 barrels per day.

Finally, from From the Ground: BP Censoring Media, Destroying Evidence, by Dr. Riki Ott, June 13, 2010:

Orange Beach, Alabama -- While President Obama insists that the federal government is firmly in control of the response to BP's spill in the Gulf, people in coastal communities where I visited last week in Louisiana and Alabama know an inconvenient truth: BP -- not our president -- controls the response. In fact, people on the ground say things are out of control in the gulf.

Even worse, as my latest week of adventures illustrate, BP is using federal agencies to shield itself from public accountability.

For example, while flying on a small plane from New Orleans to Orange Beach, the pilot suddenly exclaimed, "Look at that!" The thin red line marking the federal flight restrictions of 3,000 feet over the oiled Gulf region had just jumped to include the coastal barrier islands off Alabama.

"There's only one reason for that," the pilot said. "BP doesn't want the media taking pictures of oil on the beaches. You should see the oil that's about six miles off the coast," he said grimly. We looked down at the wavy orange boom surrounding the islands below us. The pilot shook his head. "There's no way those booms are going to stop what's offshore from hitting those beaches."

BP knows this as well -- boom can only deflect oil under the calmest of sea conditions, not barricade it -- so they have stepped up their already aggressive effort to control what the public sees.

At the same time I was en route to Orange Beach, Clint Guidry with the Louisiana Shrimp Association and Dean Blanchard, who owns the largest shrimp processor in Louisiana, were in Grand Isle taking Anderson Cooper out in a small boat to see the oiled beaches. The U.S. Coast Guard held up the boat for 20 minutes - an intimidation tactic intended to stop the cameras from recording BP's damage. Luckily for Cooper and the viewing public, Dean Blanchard is not easily intimidated.

A few days later, the gig was up with the booms. Oil was making landfall in four states and even BP can't be everywhere at once. CBS 60 Minutes Australia found entire sections of boom hung up in marsh grasses two feet above the water off Venice. On the same day on the other side of Barataria Bay, Louisiana Bayoukeeper documented pools of oil and oiled pelicans inside the boom -- on the supposedly protected landward side -- of Queen Bess Island off Grand Isle.

With oil undisputedly hitting the beaches and the number of dead wildlife mounting, BP is switching tactics. In Orange Beach, people told me BP wouldn't let them collect carcasses. Instead, the company was raking up carcasses of oiled seabirds. "The heads separate from the bodies," one upset resident told me. "There's no way those birds are going to be autopsied. BP is destroying evidence!"

Video from NOAA site shows officials knew quickly of potential for massive oil flow

You know, Bill Clinton taught me to recognize when a politician was not telling us the whole story - a skill I honed under Bush-43. I know a crook when I see one, and this guy Obama....

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