Thursday, April 29, 2010

Spill Five Times Worse Than Initially Estimated

And that's just what they're admitting to. NYT:
Size of Spill in Gulf of Mexico Is Much Larger Than Thought

Published: April 28, 2010

NEW ORLEANS — Government officials said late Wednesday night that oil might be leaking from a well in the Gulf of Mexico at a rate five times that suggested by initial estimates.

In a hastily called news conference, Rear Adm. Mary E. Landry of the Coast Guard said a scientist from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration had concluded that oil is leaking at the rate of 5,000 barrels a day, not 1,000 as had been estimated. While emphasizing that the estimates are rough given that the leak is at 5,000 feet below the surface, Admiral Landry said the new estimate came from observations made in flights over the slick, studying the trajectory of the spill and other variables.

An explosion and fire on a drilling rig on April 20 left 11 workers missing and presumed dead. The rig sank two days later about 50 miles off the Louisiana coast.

If you ever wondered whether the oil industry is in business for your health, the answer is that it is... about to the same degree as the health insurance industry. We need to settle on and pursue an energy strategy that does not depend on offshore drilling, or even transport of oil in supertankers, before we have not only dead patches of ocean but also vast dead stretches of our beaches. Even viewed on a cost/benefit basis, offshore drilling is an exceptional risk for exceptionally little reward... perhaps another year's worth of oil, not enough to bet our coastal ecosystems on it.

Please ask President Obama to rescind his drill-baby-drill-offshore proposals and stop risking everything and everyone that lives along the coast... because that's exactly what he is proposing to do. The evidence is in the Gulf of Mexico right now.

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