BP Macondo (Gulf of Mexico) Oil Spill

Discussion in 'World Events' started by Saint, May 18, 2010.

  1. hypewaders Save Changes Registered Senior Member

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    Moderator Note: This thread is now open for 24 hours, pending new evidence of sabotage aboard or beneath Deepwater Explorer. If there is a credible case presented for terrorist involvement in the Macondo Disaster, I'll leave this thread open indefinitely.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2010
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  3. Giambattista sssssssssssssssssssssssss sssss Valued Senior Member

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    Danke schoen!

    So after 24 hours, or whatever deadline is set, could we have the option of merging with a wider Gulf Disaster thread, because I think the topic deserves a thread beyond just a sabotage theory, especially if the sabotage thread gets closed and drifts away to the bottom of the gulf. I just don't think it's fair for this discussion to go to waste.
     
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  5. hypewaders Save Changes Registered Senior Member

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    Moderator Note (this is related to the discussion of thread closure above): At the request of Giambattista I have merged a thread formerly titled Was the BP oil spill an act of terrorism? at this point. The posts that were combined into this thread commence with this one above.

    While this story is far from over (especially in terms of assessment, cleanup and litigation) I do not intend to condone or encourage a degeneration into discussion of baseless conspiracy theories here. If you have not seen major breaking news about terrorism at Macondo, then further discussion along those lines here is very likely to be ruled as off-topic, inappropriate, and disruptive. It was because of such concerns that I paused the thread being merged here in the first place.


    Moderator Warning to All: I will consider any further post postulating an act of terrorism or sabotage at the BP Macondo wellhead and/or aboard Deepwater Horizon (without credible supporting evidence) as an infraction in violation of the Forum Rules.

    I will cite members who continue (in the absence of new and verifiable evidence) to promote the theory here of a terrorist plot or deliberate sabotage in this disaster, with close attention to the following aspects of the Forum Rules and subforum guidelines:

    • Off-Topic Posting
    • Trolling/Meaningless Post Content
    • Repeated Topics
    • Interfering with Moderation
    • Repeat Offenders
    • Stay on topic
    • Be mature
    • Post in good faith

    Questions or feedback on this moderator note discouraging off-topic posts? ->
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2010
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  7. Kittamaru Never cruel nor cowardly... Staff Member

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    So, who here thinks that this will be blown over one way or another? I mean... can the US effectively punish BP for the gross negligence that lead to this? How many safeties were non-functional? How many regulations did they ignore? How much common-sense was ignored?

    *shrugs* Just curious

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  8. hypewaders Save Changes Registered Senior Member

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    Major USi media has moved on. BP and Halliburton lawyers, PR firms, and lobbyists will clean up remaining surface details. USis have pondered the ecological costs of petroleum-powered society as deeply as we care to, and are already back to pretending that things can keep chugging along like before, without appreciable shared consciousness and responsibility. There's a memory-hole in the bottom of the sea, and we in the USA like it that way.
     
  9. Kittamaru Never cruel nor cowardly... Staff Member

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    *shakes head* seems all too true Hype
     
  10. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    What about all of the millions of gallons of oil on the bottom of the ocean, we never hear how they are getting that stuff cleaned or are they?
     
  11. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    Except there has been no evidence of gross negligence at a corporate level for any of the companies involved.

    So far I've not seen a SINGLE regulation has been shown to have been ignored.

    Yes, mistakes were made on the platform that night, but the people who made them paid dearly for them. There is no indication that they were driven by corporate policies to make the mistakes.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/09/us/09spill.html?_r=1&partner=rss&emc=rss

    Oh, and in case you were wondering, though the well was plugged last July, and there are rarely reports in the media about it, BP still has ~6,000 people and ~400 vessels working on the clean up.
    Last I read they were down to about 30 miles of coastline (from about 900) that still needed clean-up efforts.

    Arthur
     
  12. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    Where did you hear that there were millions of gallons of oil on the bottom of the ocean?
     
  13. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    A mile below the surface in the Gulf of Mexico, there is little sign of life.
    everything's dead," University of Georgia professor Samantha Joye said.

    In an exclusive trip aboard the U.S. Navy's deep-ocean research submersible Alvin, ABC News was given the chance to observe the impact of this summer's massive oil spill that most will never see.

    The ocean floor appears to be littered with twigs, but Joye points out that they are actually dead worms and that Alvin is sitting on top of what is considered an 80-square mile kill zone.

    Having taken nearly two dozen dives in the Gulf inside the tiny sub that helped discover the Titanic, Joye is leading a team of scientists who are investigating how much oily material is left on the sea floor.

    Aboard the Alvin Thursday, Joye said she saw "about three to four inches of material.

    http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...95C6Ag&usg=AFQjCNFGZIPq7a9YysbUsj3jQ1Y-Wln69w
     
  14. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    And nothing in that article indicated that there was millions of gallons of oil down there anymore.

    Alvin only went on a dozen dives so it certainly didn't cover 80 square miles and when they showed the fluorescent pictures that supposedly lit up the oil, the oil was just in sparce random dots, certainly nowhere near covering the bottom.

    So though we know the oil killed a lot of very sparse bottom life at 5,000 ft, I don't think we know how much oil is still down there.

    I'll wait for the actual report that estimates the quantity of oil remaining when they publish their research because from the pics I saw, the amount remaining looks very small and also appears to be way too sparse to recover from that depth.

    Arthur
     
  15. occidental Registered Senior Member

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    It also doesnt tend to make the news that there is still over 1000 square miles of the gulf that is closed to all fishing, and over 4000 square miles that is still closed to Royal Red shrimping, though the well was plugged last July.

    sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/sf/deepwater_horizon/DWH_BP_OilSpill_FisheryClosureMap_112410v2.pdf
     
  16. Kittamaru Never cruel nor cowardly... Staff Member

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    I'll have to find the articles... but BP has been cited time and again for their lack of "safety practices" in regards to drilling, and unless I'm mistaken this rig was no exception - they didn't pressure test the wellhead until much later than they should have and, even though it failed the pressure test, they went ahead with drilling. That should have been the point where they stopped, but they continued on ahead instead of going back to reinforce it.

    Like I said, I'll have to find the articles... but mistakes were made, and not just on that rig

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  17. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Are you blind because in that article it states

     
  18. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, but in the actual video, the oil they showed was vary sparse.

    Like I said, I'll wait for an actual scientific report about their findings as to the quantity of oil remaining, but until then the fact is they did NOT say there were MILLIONS of gallons of oil on the bottom as you claimed.

    Arthur
     
  19. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    BP's Refinery operations have been cited many times for safety violations, particularly their Texas refinery, but that was 5 years ago and a new CEO (Hayward) was brought in to fix those kind of problems.

    The DeepWater Horizon Rig was owned and operated by TransOcean, not BP (BP leased the rig and the Rig crew that came with it), and thus TransOcean were the Drillers on the rig, and they in fact were given a Safety Award just the previous year. TransOcean for instance was responsible for the maintenance and safe operation of the BOP, whose failure of the Shear Rams contained in them ultimately led to the spill not being contained at the well head. (To put that in perspective, BP engineers spent TEN DAYS trying to manually operate the Blind Shear Ram, using the manual controls via their submersibles before TransOcean admitted that the BOP that was on the well wasn't configured like the engineering drawings they were using, and that BP had wasted 10 days trying to get a "Test Ram" (which does nothing to stop the oil) to engage. By that time, there is a good chance that all the oil that had gone through the well had erroded the actual Blind Shear Ram and thus that may in fact be why the BOP never could stop the flow (The BOP is still undergoing forensic testing)

    When they were capping the well they did what is known as a Negative Pressure Test to tell if the Cement was holding, the cement wasn't but they misread the Negative Pressure Test results.

    A human error by a combination of TransOcean and BP personnel on the rig led to the problem and they did not consult with shoreside resources on this either, though that help was available.

    The Rig crew (TransOcean personnel) then made a number of key errors over the next hour (that's how long it took the oil/gas to reach the rig) such that they didn't notice that oil was coming up, and when they did realize they didn't react properly and when it reached the rig they didn't handle that emergency properly and divert the oil/gas over the side of the rig.

    From the preliminary Presidential Commission:

    Although the Presidential Commission won’t release its final report until Jan. 11, it outlined its 13 preliminary findings.

    Some key ones:

    5. Negative pressure test repeatedly showed that the primary cement job had not isolated hydrocarbons.

    6. Despite those results, BP and Transocean personnel treated negative pressure test as a complete success.

    8. The number of simultaneous activities and nature of flow monitoring equipment made kick detection more difficult during riser displacement.

    9. Nevertheless, kick indications were clear enough that if observed they would have allowed the rig crew to have responded earlier.

    10. Once the rig crew recognized the influx, there were several options that might have prevented or delayed the explosion and/or shut in the well.

    11. Diverting overboard might have prevented or delayed the explosion. Triggering the EDS prior to the explosion might have shut in the well and limited the impact of any explosion and/or the blowout.

    13. There’s no evidence at this time to suggest that there was a conscious decision to sacrifice safety concerns to save money.

    Arthur
     
  20. Kittamaru Never cruel nor cowardly... Staff Member

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    If I'm not mistaken, weren't several key safety items non-functional (including dead batteries on part of the blowback preventer that is intended to clamp shut the wellhead)?
     
  21. occidental Registered Senior Member

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    Apparently there was no regulation against filing a fraudulent response plan.
     
  22. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, but as pointed out, the BOP and it's maintenance is the responsibility of the Rig Operator, TransOcean. (Important point, BP as the Well Owner, has by law, all the financial responsibility for the cleanup, regardless of mistakes made by the employees of their sub-contractors, like TransOcean or Halliburton)

    BUT, that battery is only needed for remote operation and as a backup if the EDS is used. The EDS system wasn't used, and then was not able to be used once the rig exploded.

    At which point (even as the fires were being fought on the rig) BP used submersibles to activate the BOP Blind Shear Ram to seal the well. They worked on it for 10 days before TransOcean admitted that the plans they gave to BP for the BOP stack were wrong.


    Testimony of Harry Thierens, BP, COAST GUARD/BOEM BOARD OF INVESTIGATION 104 (Aug. 25, 2010).

    Arthur
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011
  23. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

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    Apparently they didn't since the Justice Dept, which has been investigating all the events leading up to the blowout for 6 months, has not charged them with filing a fraudulent response plan, they have filed charges against them (and TransOcean) for events of the day on the rig leading to the blowout.
    If there was Corporate involvement in ordering unsafe practices etc, then it would result in criminal charges, but no such criminal charges have been filed.

    Arthur
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011

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