“Note to "journalists" here: so here's a thought: why don't you guys go to the Joint Information Command and follow up on this instead of coming up with speculations and assumptions and posting them on the internet as "news"? Whatever happened to following up on leads to find out what the story is?
And Huffington, what's up-- you guys will post anything as long as you figure that it's provocative enough to get people to click on it and increase your hit rate?
I am working on this spill, and am walking a fair number of beaches. What the video shows is interesting, but by no means convincing that BP has gone to the effort to dump sand to cover up oil on Grand Isle. Grand Isle is one of the most heavily observed beaches in the whole state of Louisiana when it comes to oiling-- it's extremely hard to believe why BP would choose that place to try some sort of BS subterfuge.
If this really IS a story, you could be a hero by pursuing it through the JIC and getting someone to answer for it. As it is, what you've got is just a "green" version of the National Inquirer-- "Inquiring (but not necessarily Intelligent) Minds Want to Know."
I'm sorry you guys-- this oil slick makes me sick-- sick enough that I'm down here working on dealing with it. But misinformation and raising public paranoia is what is making the nation sick. PLEASE stop. Really.”
DanMan2012 on Jul 2, 2010 at 08:32:22
“Thank you for your efforts, work and lucid thought.”
humaneisfact on Jul 2, 2010 at 08:29:58
“i agree totally but this is America..profit is the bottom line...integrity be da mn ed”
“Google "NRDAR Regulations." Federal agencies that oversee natural resources in the area (FWS, NOAA, for starters) along with the affected states will form a Trustee Council that is tasked with assessing the injuries-- to fisheries, wildlife, habitats, and the economic activities that spring from them, and then with calculating the costs to restore those resources. Lawyers working for the feds and the states then file suit, or more likely in this case, settle with, the Responsible Party (BP). BP may (and is likely to, as more information comes to light) turn to other responsible parties (e.g., Haliburton) to pick up part of the tab. That is on top of repaying state and federal response costs, and also on top of the numerous civil lawsuits that have already been filed.
How it will differ from the Alaska experience is that the NRDAR regs came out of that experience, and the agencies involved have been practicing and refining the process for 20 years. The death and destruction is irreplaceable, but believe me there will be people working on this to the limits of our legal and social values.
“Google "Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration." BP is basically on the hook for everything you mentioned-- plus the costs of restoring the resources (wetlands, fish and bird habitat) that create those economic resources that people will be losing.”
“There is a thing called Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration (NRDAR)-- Google it. It won't recover ALL costs, but it's going to cost BP a pretty penny. About 3 Federal Agencies and 4 states and possibly Indian Tribes as well will be in the plantiff box. But of course, it WILL ultimately cost us all because it will result in higher oil prices. Unless we use less oil. Hey, there's a good idea...”
“Actually that is false. I currently work for an environmental agency, and some birds can "sense wind patterns" and some cannot. And bats seem to be totally incapable of it-- they appear to be getting slaughtered
What we need is a COMPREHENSIVE and REALISTIC assessment of the comparative risks and benefits from a LONG-TERM perspective (you don't steer a boat to shore by looking down over the bow, you look at your ultimate destination). This approach needs to start with a commitment to avoid strategies that will lead to unacceptable "worst-case" solutions, even if they are statistically improbable, and even then it needs to include a commitment to working on ways to improve those approaches even if they are "inconvenient" or "uneconomic." Let's start planning as if our grandchildren mattered to us.”
“I couldn't find any info about how deep the ocean off the Santa Barbara coast is, but what I did find was that the hole they had to plug (which they did by pumping mud into it) was 3,500 ft. deep (below the ocean floor). On this spill, the ocean floor is 5,000 feet below the surface, and I believe that this well set the record for drilled depth, at something like 13,000 ft below the ocean floor. Orders of magnitude more oil and logistical difficulty. The issue is not technical competence, but whether we are making realistic assessments of "worst case" scenarios. And I think this situation emphatically indicates that we are NOT. But I think it's an overall social problem, and can't be located on the desk of one person or the platform of one political party. It's something we need to come to terms with as a society. Sorry there's not a convenient scapegoat around to blame.”
ROLtheWolf on Apr 29, 2010 at 17:33:01
“Greed and lack of planning.
We should be looking for alternatives to oil and coal and Nuke to reduce the likelihood that any should cause a tremendous calamity like this or Chernobyl, or the steady destruction of our atmosphere, but instead, greed and lack of planning prevent sensible policy.”
freecasey on Apr 29, 2010 at 17:21:02
“Thanks for clarifying. I might indeed have been comparing apples to oranges. But we still can't count ballots. :)”
“I am in the "spill response community" so I will admit my bias, but I think yes, the response is going as fast as possible. There are a large number of people on the ground right now, and many more waiting in the wings and ready to go at the drop of the hat (myself included). The only thing worse than an inadequate response is an uncoordinated response (and the worst is one that is both inadequate AND uncoordinated-- see FEMA and Hurricane Katrina). I think that this case is very different. Though it may be hard to see from the "outside", the government's response-ability is HUGELY better than it was in 2005-- no one wants to live through that chaos again. And this one is requiring resources from local volunteer to federal...everyone: Coast Guard, Dept. of Defense, Fish and Wildlife Service, EPA, States, Communities, Volunteers, etc. It's a lot to coordinate, but so far it seems like everyone is dancing as fast as they can without stepping on their partners' toes. Of course, we will all know the real answer in about 4 months...”
“"If the well cannot be closed, almost 100,000 barrels of oil, or 4.2 million gallons, could spill into the Gulf before crews can drill a relief well to alleviate the pressure.
100,000 barrels/ 5,000 barrels/day = 20 days. This "total" is incorrect. The estimates I have heard are that drilling an interceptor well will take 60-90 days. So the "best case" is 5,000 bbl x 60 days= 300,000 bbl =, 12.6 million gal (at 42 gal/bbl). The 90 day (less hopefully optimistic) total is 18.9 million gal. I assume that the oil pocket is > 20 million gal or it wouldn't be worth drilling. Maybe the flow will decrease over time as the reservoir gets depleted, but I wouldn't count on it as a planning factor.
Maybe the "20 day" estimate assumes they can "dome" the well? This is complicated by the depth of the incident-- "doming" has been done successfully in 300 feet of water, but not at 5,000 ft.
Hopeful optimism in the assessment/prediction/crystal-ball gazing of "worst case scenario" is what has gotten us into this mess, please let's not let people get away with hopeful optimism as a planning tool for the response.
We have got to quit using our hopes and aspirations for the future as a predictor of how things will turn out, whether it's home prices, energy development or climate. This social tendency of ours is killing us-- literally.”
wayne1709 on Apr 29, 2010 at 17:12:28
“shill baby shill, drill baby drill blame DEMS if anything bad happens”
Mar 22, 2010 at 20:58:56
“Good report, but somewhat one-sided regarding human health and neglecting environmental impacts. In addition to their other "crimes" (oil involved in manufacture of the bottles as well as shipping, cooling, etc; suspect water quality of the water in the bottles), one of the biggest issues with plastic water bottles is that they contribute significantly to the literal islands of plastic that are forming in the oceans, and to the rafts and mini-islands of plastic that can be found floating in just about every backwater of every river in the world that runs through an urban area, and on every beach in the world.
When the plastics eventually do degrade, they don't "dissolve", but instead break down into sub-micron sized particles (less than the diameter of a human hair). As a piece of plastic breaks down into smaller particles, it gains more and more surface area, which is where environmental contaminants can adhere to the particles-- in addition to the contaminants already in the plastic. These particles (and their contaminants)can be either consumed or incorporated into the cell walls of algae & diatoms, which make up the base of most aquatic food chains. These organisms, along with their plastic, then are bio-concentrated up the food chain by the mathematics of eating (a crab eats 10 diatoms, a fish then eats 10 crabs, and bird (or a person) then eats 10 fish, etc). It's a real problem.”
Mar 22, 2010 at 20:25:02
“Sorry DennyCrane- it doesn't work that way. What is different in "spinach before modern times" that makes it so special? There hasn't been any evolution (or de-evolution) in the chemical characteristics of spinach between "olden times" and now. Although spinach, (like most agricultural crops) is a cultivated variety of a native plant, there is nothing that follows biologically to mean that somehow that cultivation ended up resulting in a decrease in the nutritional quality of the spinach. If anything supplements are helpful because we have a hard time getting the diversity of nutrients that we used to get when we ate little bits of just about anything we could get into our gullets (without it coming back up or poisoning us). And even that is a poor argument because it's pretty well documented that things like eating dried fish or reindeer meat for months on end was how a lot of native populations made it through the winter. But "healthy organic spinach" vs "spinach before modern times"? Not so much...”
Mark Whittington on Mar 22, 2010 at 22:01:48
“what, are you making this up as you go? What follows from organically depleted soil is nutritionally depleted spinach. Ask your kid.”
Feb 15, 2010 at 11:22:59
“One of the hardest things to learn and remember is that "its not all about you". Really. Hardly ever. Those people are not getting in your way to make your life more miserable, they are just going on about their day. They may be rude and inconsistent, but it's more of a consequence of their own "trip" than intentional malice. The best way to deal with their obliviousness is to become more focused yourself. Approach traffic on the freeway as "rocks in the river." Your job is to navigate smoothly and enjoyably through them, which converts a frustrating drive into an enjoyable, meditative activity. Rather than rushing up on people and then having to hit your brakes (all the while fulminating about how these people are getting in your way), observe what people are doing and how they are driving, and think ahead to plot a path around them to the next clear spot, or the next "challenge" (yeah, go ahead and put a new positive name on it). When you do this, your actions, which ARE "all about you" can be enjoyable. You can take some satisfaction from accomplishing your objectives, which might be to drive well, "outsmart" people (which really isn't too hard because the basic premise is that they aren't thinking about driving, and you are), and to arrive safe and unflustered to your destination. So it's really about what's "attracting" your attention, and then what you're doing with that information.”
CryptoKnight on Feb 15, 2010 at 11:40:42
“This is interesting in that new age philosophy holds that events in your life are brought in for a reason. Thus, they suggest that the whole universe is indeed about you and about providing you abundance should you align yourself with its energy. But I agree that it is not about me.”