20 May 2010

BP Drawing 3,000 Barrels Per Day Thru Siphon Tube


BP's riser tube is siphoning 3,000 barrels per day, about 60% of the estimated 5,000 barrels per day ongoing gusher. The top kill procedure for plugging the well will not be tried until Sunday or Monday.

Shore crews are having to deal with definite sabotage of oil booms by unknown eco-terrorists. Whether those involved are from groups such as Greenpeace or Earth Liberation Front, or whether they are simply members of bored bird rescue crews longing for something to do, the willful sabotage of shore prevention efforts demonstrates a desire on the part of some to create a worse disaster than has already occurred.
The growing oil slick has remained at sea for the last month, and the latest forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration calls for it to remain away from local shorelines through the end of this week.

...The Gulf Coast received good news earlier this week when a riser tube -- essentially a giant straw that sucks oil from the well to a surface vessel -- was inserted. Suttles said that the tube is removing about 3,000 barrels of oil per day, about 126,000 gallons.

...Ken Eslava, Fairhope's assistant public works director, said several sections of oil containment boom were vandalized along the Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay overnight Tuesday or early Wednesday morning.

"We're not talking about boaters trying to move the boom so that they can get around. We're talking about sabotage," Eslava said. "It was apparently done with a knife or a razor blade. It's clearly malicious." _al.com

The 835-foot drill ship Discoverer Enterprise, which began collecting oil Sunday through a straw-like tube connected to the broken well a mile below, flared-off gas from a pipe sticking out the side like a giant Olympic torch while water keeping the gas pipe cool generated steam.

About a half mile away sat the Development Driller 3 rig, which began boring a relief well May 2 in hopes of shooting concrete into the well to close it. The rig has drilled about 9,000 feet -- about halfway to reaching the original well -- but has paused drilling to install the blow out preventer, the safety device that was supposed to stop the original well from exploding. Another rig with a tall tower, the Development Driller 2, began drilling a back-up relief well over the weekend in case BP encountered problems with the other relief well. The first well isn't expected to be completed until August.

The operation is huge, with maybe 15 vessels operating at the core. Surrounding the drill ship and rigs were at least three dive support vessels with helipads, giant crane arms capable of lowering the remote operated vehicle and repair equipment down to the sea floor. There were also a slew of supply vessels that may have carried things like fuel, water, drilling mud and chemicals to the site, tug boats and utility boats.

....on many days, C-130 military style planes drop the disperants from about 75 to 100 feet above the water, while boats in the distance corral oil and burn it in fires that get smoky like burning tires. _NOLA


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