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Ear to the Ground

BP Plans a Comeback in Gulf of Mexico

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Posted on Oct 27, 2011
oiled-up pelican
AP / Charlie Riedel

Remember this? A pelican bears the brunt of BP’s accident in the Gulf of Mexico after the Deepwater Horizon spill in 2010.

One might think that after the ecological apocalypse that British Petroleum visited upon the Gulf of Mexico and surrounding environs with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in April 2010, BP might harbor a healthy sense of shame about returning to that scarred region. Yeah, no.

In fact, BP will be back in the Gulf soon, thanks to a go-ahead granted by the Interior Department for the company to plunk a new exploratory well further out to sea and get back to drilling while the new Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement looks on.  —KA

The Miami Herald:

In approving the drill permit, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement said that BP met more stringent safety requirements devised by the federal government in the aftermath of the Deepwater disaster. The company also planned to follow even tougher voluntary standards that exceeded the government’s rules.

“This permit was approved only after thorough well design, blowout preventer and containment capability reviews,” said bureau Director Michael R. Bromwich.

At a depth of more than 6,000 feet, the proposed well is part of the company’s Kaskida oil and gas development drilling area in the Keathley Canyon located about 250 miles south of Lafayette, La.

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Oceanna's avatar

By Oceanna, October 29, 2011 at 10:07 am Link to this comment

It’s probably OK at this point to throw out your cigarette butt into the Gulf.  Or
so I’d assume.  I think the dispersant spraying of Corexit—which yes, does have
a flash point of 116 F—has stopped.  The undisclosed amount in tons has sunk
and dispersed the oil into plumes and possibly stoppages of the Gulf Loop,
according to some scientists who don’t mind some notoriety and don’t worry
about losing their jobs. 

So now BP has been awarded another well by a “reformed” agency with a
different name. And by Neptune, they get to drill even deeper than before! 
Incidentally, the deeper out the well, the more things can go wrong in a rather
exponential kind of way.  But never fear, they’ve even been working on their
blowout plans for several whole months before starting and a more
environmentally conscious agency is overseeing them.

I’d say BP has the same level of accountability as Chase, Bank of America, etc.
who have absconded with trillions , whose toxic derivatives out in the market
helped to bring down Greece.  Are we screwed or are we screwed?

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By SarcastiCanuck, October 28, 2011 at 8:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Please don’t throw your cigarettes in the gulf.It might catch fire.

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Oceanna's avatar

By Oceanna, October 28, 2011 at 7:25 am Link to this comment

I left this out about BP’s preferential treatment:

http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/news/content/view/full/82044

BP was granted the spoils of war in Iraq. 

I misworded the previous comment:  BP IS the largest supplier of oil to the
military.

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Oceanna's avatar

By Oceanna, October 28, 2011 at 7:17 am Link to this comment

http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2010/05/20/20greenwire-loop-current-
destabilizes-lowering-gulf-oil-sp-23004.html
Gulf Loop current destabilizations in the Gulf of Mexico were noted in the NYT
May 20, 2010.  Its current was observed severed from the Gulf Stream, which is
apparently why major amounts of oil didn’t enter the Gulf Stream as predicted.

http://www.associazionegeofisica.it/OilSpill.pdf
“Since comparative analysis with past satellite data until may 2010 didn’t show
relevant anomalies, it might be therefore plausible to correlate the breaking of
the Loop Current with the biochemical and physical action of the BP Oil Spill on
the Gulf Stream. 
It is reasonable to foresee the threat that the breaking of a crucial warm
stream as the Loop Current may generate a chain reaction of unpredictable
critical phenomena and instabilities due to strong non linearities which may
have serious consequences on the dynamics of the Gulf Stream thermo-
regulation activity of the Global Climate. “

This correlates with the observations of the NYT observation on the disruptions
of the Gulf Loop in the Gulf of Mexico, which were from late May 2010.

So if the warmer waters of the Gulf Loop aren’t entering the Gulf Stream, which
circulates through the Northern and Southern hemispheres, then it stands to
reason that colder winters are in store again this year for the more northern
latitudes. It’s getting damn well colder through the fall and winter since the BP
spill!

BP’s lack of accountability could be attributed to their giving the highest PAC
donations to the Obama administration:
http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0510/36783.html
and also to BP having been the largest supplier (80%) of oil to the military:
http://www.truthout.org/x-epa-officials-why-isnt-bp-under-criminal-
investigation59936

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By SoTexGuy, October 28, 2011 at 5:15 am Link to this comment

PeopleOVERgreed is spot on. Corporate citizenship has come with the privileges but not the responsibilities.

As an aside here in south Texas we are in the middle of the worst Red Tide episode in memory. Thousands and thousands of dead fish carpeting our bays and littering the beaches. It merits little news coverage.

Red tide is certainly the direct result of nutrients, chemicals and more dumped into coastal waters willy-nilly by agribusiness, municipalities and industry.. Of course ‘the causes are still not known’!

The atmosphere and oceans have taken a lot.. it looks like the party may be over soon.

Adios!

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By akumous, October 27, 2011 at 8:52 pm Link to this comment

I haven’t forgotten what this Company has done to our
environment and the people that worked with them to clean
it up. But it seems that America has, or at least the ones
that are not immediately affected by it. I am not
surprised by this article because Corporations sole
existence is to make profit. Corporations don’t care about
the environment, they don’t care if we taint our
invaluable lands and deplete all of our natural resources.
They only care about profit. Corporations are the
instruments of our demise.

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By ardee, October 27, 2011 at 2:25 pm Link to this comment

I am unaware of any investigation into either the two non-functioning blow out protectors, built by Trans Ocean or their installation by our old friends Halliburton. Further, the British Govt. regulators found those very same protectors to be faulty on a rig ready to commence drilling in the North Sea oil field.

The difference apparently is that Britain actually regulates, thus preventing a similar occurrence to what happened in the Gulf. BP is blaming Trans Ocean which, in turn, is blaming Halliburton. Not that it matters, apparently , as the Obama Justice Dept. closely resembles the Bush version in that neither gives a damn about laws violated by large campaign donors.

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PeopleOVERgreed's avatar

By PeopleOVERgreed, October 27, 2011 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

I believe it is important to look at this from a business perspective. In that the era of federal fines without admission of guilt, recently showed BP that extreme risk is but only a monetary calculation of the overall reward. Now BP realizes that even if the risk is too great, simply baking in enough profit can over-come any financial entanglements associated with miss-operation. Throw in the “no admission of guilt” executives and board members are effectively shielded from accountability from civil recourse as well.

For BP and other corporate entities such as Massey Energy, killing American fossil fuel workers and/or environmental disasters are effectively a win-win scenario now. As the GOP house effectively defunds and under resources federal agencies, the real risk amounts to taking candy from Americans (or babies).

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