The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico continues to expand, despite BP’s boasting about the number of barrels they pull out of the water each day. Over the weekend, the crude washed up for the first time on the shores of mainland Mississippi, driving away the already scant number of tourists.
The ever-expanding pool of oil once known as the Gulf of Mexico isn’t just crushing the local fishing industry; it’s also caused many couples who had planned waterfront weddings on the beaches of the Florida Panhandle to move their nuptials further inland.
Though British Petroleum’s own CEO has made public statements like “The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into [the Gulf of Mexico] is tiny in relation to the total water volume,” and the always classic “The environmental impact of this disaster is likely to be very, very modest,” a recently released internal document shows that BP’s initial estimates of the ongoing oil spill were outright apocalyptic.
With the summer of 2010 shaping up to be not exactly peachy for many towns on the Gulf of Mexico as they watch balls of oil drift toward their shores, a number of folks in the region won’t even have their traditional July 4 fireworks to look forward to.
As reported late last week, British Petroleum had set an early estimate of $14 billion for payouts to workers and businesses crippled by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. But a new report claims that BP has set aside a higher total of $20 billion for this reason.
Perhaps figuring that if a little forceful nudge from the federal government can get BP to stop dragging its feet on paying businesses hurt by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the U.S. Coast Guard has now told the oil giant that they really need to step up their actions with regards to both stopping the spewing crude and containing/cleaning up the mess that’s already been made.
Though BP may be not dragging their feet as slowly on getting out payments to businesses crippled by the huge oil slick that used to be the Gulf of Mexico, that money can only go so far toward keeping established businesses above water.
On the same day scientists studying the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico say that previous guesses at the amount of crude leaked into the water have been greatly understated, British Petroleum has put together their first estimate of what it’s going to cost the oil giant to clean up the mess.
Though BP has made attempts to keep reporters away from the icky, oily dead and dying animals floating in on the greasy tides of the Gulf of Mexico, they haven’t been able to stop the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service at bay.
The growing oil slick that once was the Gulf of Mexico doesn’t appear to be anywhere near resolution, with all attempts to staunch the flow of petroleum thus far having failed and the only solution that experts are sure will work — drilling relief wells — several months away. But as the fishermen in the area fret about what will happen to their livelihoods in both the short and long term, we found some video evidence that should quell the concerns of those in the oyster biz.
By attaching a mile-long pipe to its leaking well, BP is now able to slurp off 1,000 barrels of oil daily. The Gulf of Mexico spill currently emits about 5,000 barrels of oil per day, according to BP/Coast Guard/NOAA estimates, which have been challenged by independent scientists who put the figure more at 70,000 barrels per day, and criticized BP for using methodology specifically not recommended for measuring large oil spills. BP’s response: we’re here to stop the oil, not measure it. Scientists are also concerned that the oil could reach a major stream that would ferry it into the Florida Keys and up the East Coast. Looks like we’re gonna need a bigger milkshake straw.