Friday, May 14, 2010

Eight-Inch Tarballs Wash Up On La. Coast

Port Fouchon, La. is reporting eight-inch tarballs washing up on its coast. I wonder how many gigabytes of sludge an eight-inch tarball contains...

What's the news reaction here in Oil City, USA? Well, the Chron seems to be pretending it never happened. Don't expect to find much about it on the front page. If you're in Galveston, try the Guidry News site; the Galveston Daily News seems to be ignoring the spill, at least on the front page. Oh, no no no, the spill isn't coming here, and denial is a river in Egypt an oil slick in Galveston Bay.

Look, folks. This is real, and this is right now. No amount of wishing will make it go away. What will be left of our beaches once it's all washed ashore is anybody's guess at this point, but I doubt we'll see any headlines reading "Spill Damage Not as Great as Expected." Well, maybe in a BP press release..

UPDATE: Perhaps I didn't make it clear why residents of the Texas coast should not be so cavalier about the possibility of the spill coming here. Note that scientists in Mexico have concern that the spill could come there in August in response to seasonally changing currents. A spill that lands in Mexico, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and (notwithstanding Bloomberg's omission) Florida cannot possibly avoid Texas altogether. This is the whole Gulf Coast we're talking about; no one skates free.


  1. eight inch tarballs, that's a band, right?

  2. hipparchia - they must play techno...

  3. The tarballs are probably from the 80% of the oil that isn't up at the surface, which means 4 to 100 million gallons.

    One solid tropical storm and the entire Gulf could be spattered with oil.

    We can see what the surface oil is doing, but have no good grasp of where the heavy stuff is going.

    What isn't sinking in with people is that they are testing the tarballs to see if they are coming from the blown well, or one of the thousands of other wells in Gulf.

  4. [i can hear you loud and clear!]


  5. Somehow I suspect your other readers (other than Bryan) didn't get your gigabytes tarball joke ;). Reminds me of the days when the joke was, "how many gigabytes of bandwidth is a semitrailer full of 9-track tapes?" Of course, they don't know what 9-track tapes are either, so that joke doesn't work either :).

    - Badtux the Geeky Penguin



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