Saturday, July 31, 2010

BP Well: Capped on Tuesday, Maybe

"BP to try well kill Tuesday"
Reuters (July 30, 2010)

"BP Plc said on Friday it could seal its ruptured Gulf of Mexico oil well by next week as U.S. lawmakers prepared to vote on reforms that would put tougher restrictions on offshore drilling.

"Incoming BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley said the company would attempt a "static kill" operation on Tuesday to try to plug the broken undersea Macondo well that caused the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history.

" 'We want to absolutely kill this well. The static kill will be attempted on Tuesday. The relief well by the end of the month (August),' said Dudley, BP's top executive on the Gulf oil spill who will replace Tony Hayward as CEO on October 1...."

Reuters says that the "static kill" involves mud and cement poured into the well. Later, a relief well should - BP and the rest of us hope - relieve pressure and turn the broken well from a source of trouble to (probably) a source of petroleum.

The article links to an interactive display that shows the static kill works. Or is supposed to, at any rate.

Reuters also reports on what the American Congress is doing to get credit for BP's efforts in capping the well and restoring the Gulf coast. Sorry - that's not quite the way it's phrased in the article. America's midterm elections are coming in November, and the politicos are, in the Lemming's opinion, often sillier than usual in this season.

Don't get me wrong: British Petroleum, or at any rate the nitwit(s) who decided to use that "walruses of the Gulf" report, made some monumentally stupid decisions. Now eleven people are dead, the company's got liabilities and an image problem it'll be dealing with for years - make that decades, and folks living around the Gulf are dealing with oil on the water and - thanks to the American government - few to no oil-drilling-related jobs.

The Lemming will step off his soapbox in a moment, but - finally - a word for America's leaders: if people have a problem, shutting down the industry that employs them may not help.


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