We are *not* using skimmers? I'm guessing that comes as a surprise to all of the crews and logistics staff supporting the fleet of skimmers of many different sizes and configurations down in the Gulf.
is just one organization that is involved in this in a pretty major way.
Hmmm "To be clear, the acceptance of international assistance we announced today did not mean to imply that international help was arriving only now," said State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley. "In fact, before today, there were 24 foreign vessels operating in the region and nine countries had provided boom, skimmers and other assistance." ... Mexico, Norway, Holland and Japan are providing skimmers.
I suspect they're different animals. Do they use the European technology (sucking up, separating, and discharging), or are they dragging a boom across the surface? We've got several different beasts, all called "skimmers."
The Dutch reported that they offered and were spurned, but that data is a bit stale, true.
I parse that very carefully--only 24 foreign vessels? A pittance. Did not mean to imply? Before today?
Why don't they just say "help was requested promptly, and the following assistance arrived on the following dates." ?
Here's a random Louisiana perspective on things, from two days ago:
AFAIK, the larger vessels (e.g., the Responder-class OSRVs) do skim, separate, and then store the recovered oil (initially inboard but ultimately to a barge or bladder) while discharging the cleaned water. I'd imagine that the small boys can only skim and then they offload their cargo to another vessel (possibly an OSRV "mothership") or to a shore facility for cleaning.
For what it's worth, I've heard from techs supporting some of the vessels down there that one problem they are having is that so much of the oil has been emulsified by the dispersant that traditional skimming and separation techniques just aren't very effective. Rather like trying to separate oil and vinegar once they have been emulsified into mayonnaise...
America specialises in NIH syndrome and rigid box ticking mentality.
It was ludicrous to turn down the offer of highly efficient Dutch skimmers offered on the grounds that the EPA didn't like the quality of their waste water effluent. This is not an ordinary situation when the environment is already total crap taking most of the oil out efficiently is important. Discharging the same effluent into clean seawater would be totally unacceptable - unfortunately the US EPA and administration seem to lack the Dutch pragmatism needed to see this.
Which would you rather have floating on the sea 10% crude oil emulsion or a few hundred ppm? Europe isn't blameless in this either. The best available proven technology for skimming oil went out of business because no-one in the oil industry would pay for it to be developed.
"No need" for a skimmer we *NEVER* make mistakes.
Can't find original reference but this one will do for an overview:
I would still like to know which one of BP, Transocean or Halliburton actually cocked it up. Evidence seems to point to BP having no significant drilling expertise and relying entirely on contractors.
You have to wonder about the business ethics of companies that move their registration to dodgy tax havens...
And at least in one place I heard, Haliburton went to check on the well head, asked where the reinforcements and other required fixtures were, and were told that they had overspec'd them, so transoscean removed half of them! The cement was now poured, so it was too late to add them...
Indeed. Capturing even 90% of the spilt oil would be worth doing.
One of the early articles seems to hit the nail on the head when it says that most of BPs calamities in the USA have been due to failure to supervise their cost cutting contractors who put in the lowest bid.
From the WSJ article of May 1st which seems to anticipate much of what followed with astonishing prescience...
Robert Wine, a BP spokesman in London, says the responsibility for the drilling on the Deepwater Horizon was entirely Transocean's. "It was not appropriate to second-guess Transocean," says Mr. Wine. "It's not BP's role to oversee the safety of the rig." Like many of its peers, BP did not require Transocean to install the acoustic back-ups used in the North Sea to trigger the blow-out preventer in the Gulf, which is not required by American law. Past experience shows that BP's erection of a smokescreen to shift the blame will not survive scrutiny. Retreating to comfort zones could prove to be unsustainable.
Transocean spokesman Guy Cantwell says the company is "continuing to coordinate with everyone involved" in the investigation, and that "Transocean has a recognized safety record."
It seems from this like US regulators are also to blame in that they permit deep sea drilling with BOPs that do not have backup acoustic triggers to ensure failsafe operation under serious stress.
If a root cause of the disaster is sloppy laws and regulators then is it not fair that the US taxpayer should pick up some of the tab for allowing sloppy operating procedures to go unchallenged?
There's a lot "If he's (Obama) such a student of history, has he not understood that, you know, that's the one thing you don't do is engage in a land war in Afghanistan? All right? Because everyone who's tried, over a thousand years of history, has failed," Steele said. "And there are reasons for that. There are other ways to engage in Afghanistan."
"This was a war of Obama's choosing," Steele said. "This is not something the United States has actively prosecuted or wanted to engage in." ==================================
Baaed on the little i have read it took all three of them bollixing things in their own separate unique ways combined to cause this disaster. Let's fry them "jointly and severally" for this failure of proper prudence.
I doubt the appropriateness let alone the fairness of blaming every bureaucratic bunging on the current popularly [s]elected top talking head. Besides, compared to the previous top talking head, Obummer is not that much worse.
These sorts of things should give us pause before we pick any particular villain, much less shake them down.
But then foreign companies are easy targets. E.g., Toyota. There have been any number (very many) serious recalls and worse defects in GM cars since the Toyota brake scandal, but the President never mentions them. Funny, that. He had plenty to say about Toyota. And BP.