Is nuking the hole in the gulf the only option to close down the spill?

The spill is an unprecedented ecological and economic disaster and oil expert Matt Simmons has more comments on it. He says that the amount of oil being spilled daily into the gulf is still being underestimated.  He says there’s got to be an open hole in the bottom of the ocean that is spewing 150,000 barrels of oil daily and this hole has created an oil lake at the bottom of the ocean covering 40% of the gulf of Mexico—yes, you read that correctly; 40% of the gulf has an thick oil lake at the bottom.  All of the booms they’re using to corral the surface oil will do absolutely no good at all as the oil is rising to the surface from below.  He says we need to nuke the hole before the major portions of the Atlantic get poisoned and that’s the only viable option because the relief wells will likely not work.

Perhaps it legal considerations or other constraints that prevent Obama from fully disclosing what Simmons seems to know.  I don’t know what the constraints are, but I do know that if you fail to fully put all cards on the table, you run the risk of losing credibility and that’s what’s happening now.  In  the early days of the spill, I recall reading that the spill was much bigger than BP and the government acknowledged and then some weeks later, both came clean.  Now with 40% of the bottom of the gulf covered in oil, Obama makes no mention of it in his speech.  It’s not as if letting the truth out bit by bit is going to change it one iota.  Obviously he needs to confirm the facts, but as soon as known, they should be released.  I suppose the hesitancy in releasing the information is not having a solution to accompany it.  To be sure, he’s in a very tough spot with the vultures circling–there was a poll out today saying people liked Hillary more than they do Obama, but that goes along with the job.    

On the other hand, the people need to put their expectations in check.  After all, this is a crisis without precedent and it’s not as if there’s a ready made solution that can be grabbed off  the shelf and deployed at will.  A crisis like this will tax any organization or government and there will be gaffes and errors made as no one is perfect.  It’s events such as these that shatter the notion of all powerful companies or even all powerful governments.  This is way too big for BP to deal with and will press the  US Government to its maximum limit.  We needed this like a hole in the head given the economic challenges we already face as this is certainly going to weigh very heavily economically as we’re talking about an entire coastal economy/region of the country being taken out.  We will all feel that.  According to Simmons, if they don’t begin getting that oil at the bottom of the gulf up, a hurricane could come along and literally paint the coasts black and possibly shut down refining in the gulf.

In my humble opinion, there are two things that are critical now; get all the facts out and all of us coming together to solve the problem. Now is not the time for posturing, fronting and finding scapegoats.  There’ll be plenty of time for a post mortem to assess what went wrong and why.  At this point, we have to accept the fact that BP messed up and for that, they’ll likely cease to exist as a company.  We have to accept that the administration could have done a better job as well, but now  the entire focus needs to revolve around figuring out what to do to mitigate the damage.   

 

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Comments
5 Responses to “Is nuking the hole in the gulf the only option to close down the spill?”
  1. Although Simmons may be right about the only way to seal this oil leak, there are other experts who believe that the nuclear option will be just another failed attempt. They don’t believe that the dome of glass that the blast will create above the reservoir will hold overtime, and will disintegrate.

    I’m no expert, and can’t say what’s the best way to cap this well. The Russians used a small nuke to seal one of their wells, but it was on land. This leak is more than 5000 feet down, and offshore. This might, in itself, change the dynamics.

    At the end of the day, we may have to live with this leak, and use suction technology to contain it. Kevin Costner’s company has been given the “greenlight,” but his is not the only company pushing this technology.

    BP’s Tony Hayward is still denying the existence of oil plumes, or a lake of oil at or near the bottom of the Gulf. But he’s one of those who were willing, too, to use a blowout preventer designed for 15,000 p.s.i. this far down when all the evidence pointed to pressure at 60,000 p.s.i.

  2. Greg L says:

    BD, that nuclear option seems very drastic and dangerous. This is so unprecedented that it would seem that no one really knows what to do.

    You’re right, BP has been denying the oli plumes and the lake even in the face of many other folks insisting that they’re there. This is what occurred a couple of weeks back when they insisted that only 5000 barrels of oil were being spilt when others were insisting that it was far greater than that. I’m guessing this is a feeble and transparent attempt to evade liability.

  3. lily parker says:

    Please don’t tell me people are actually considering this option…..Wow i hope we are not screwed….I live in Texas.

  4. Greg L says:

    With the reports of the threat from the weather, they need to consider an array of options IMO. Whatever they do has to be well thought out. Unfortunately, the current efforts aren’t all that effective.

  5. muzyczny says:

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