Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Cynical Idealist » Sat May 15, 2010 2:46 am UTC

CivilDefense700 wrote:Did you just metric system the Barrel?

Do you have a problem with that?

As someone interested in nuclear technology I support the patented Nuke It® approach.

I'm...really hesitant about that. In addition to the possibility of it creating more paths for the oil, I've hard that the well is in the middle of a large bed of methane clathrate. Anything involving the release of a large amount of thermal energy near large amounts of methane clathrate should be looked at really, really closely, since it could result in the release of a lot of methane, which might be enough to trigger the clathrate gun.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby TheKrikkitWars » Sat May 15, 2010 2:56 am UTC

CivilDefense700 wrote:Did you just metric system the Barrel?

As someone interested in nuclear technology I support the patented Nuke It® approach.


I'm not sure that's a good idea, my understanding of trying to confine things is that rule number one is you don't supply it with massive amounts of energy or shockwaves, but instead cover up all the exit points.

To steal an unfortunate example from another thread, If you want to confine your puppy and can:
    a) install a locked door on its kennel
    or
    b) place a half stick of dynamite in its kennel, on the basis that rapidly destabalising the structure of the kennel will cause it to collapse covering the exit from the kennel

a) is the clear winner, the puppy remains in the kennel; b) means that both puppy and kennel end up "everywhere"
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby netcrusher88 » Sat May 15, 2010 3:02 am UTC

That and we don't really know what happens with a nuke under 5000 feet of water. The deepest test I know of was 2000 feet, and that was...catastrophic. Massive, rapidly expanding bubble of vapor that explodes into a huge wave at the surface. Plus we're not really sure how bad the ecological impact is, and the Gulf is a rich area of the sea.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby CivilDefense700 » Sat May 15, 2010 3:53 am UTC

Cynical Idealist wrote:
CivilDefense700 wrote:Did you just metric system the Barrel?

Do you have a problem with that?


Other than the barrel being derived from english measurement and is a rather illogical and antiquated unit to SI prefix.
No, carry on.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby TheKrikkitWars » Sat May 15, 2010 5:39 am UTC

CivilDefense700 wrote:
Cynical Idealist wrote:
CivilDefense700 wrote:Did you just metric system the Barrel?

Do you have a problem with that?


Other than the barrel being derived from english measurement and is a rather illogical and antiquated unit to SI prefix.
No, carry on.


Seems fine to me, SI prefixes are used freely with most interantionally standardised units (and a number of Imperial units; Microinches were an important engineering unit for years before britain formally adopted the metric system and SI useage became prevelant), the only other unambiguous system is to use orders of magnitude (ie standard form), the named numbers mean differing quantities in different geographic areas.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby mrpurple » Sat May 15, 2010 8:37 am UTC

CivilDefense700 wrote:
Other than the barrel being derived from english measurement and is a rather illogical and antiquated unit to SI prefix.
No, carry on.


Actually, a barrel of oil is an American unit - it's 42 US gallons.

[/pedant]

The best wells in the gulf produce in the order of 25,000 barrels of oil per day, so it would seem unlikely that this one is making four times that though an incomplete well and a crimped riser. But it's a bit irrelevant anyway - the well needs to be brought under control regardless of the flow rate.

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby General_Norris » Sat May 15, 2010 9:51 am UTC

TheKrikkitWars wrote:To steal an unfortunate example from another thread, If you want to confine your puppy and can:
    a) install a locked door on its kennel
    or
    b) place a half stick of dynamite in its kennel, on the basis that rapidly destabalising the structure of the kennel will cause it to collapse covering the exit from the kennel
a) is the clear winner, the puppy remains in the kennel; b) means that both puppy and kennel end up "everywhere"


Yse but installing a locked door takes far more time so you still get oil "everywhere".

Of course the best answer to the puppy problem is this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zJv0gssH2s

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby mrpurple » Wed May 19, 2010 8:56 pm UTC

Really good summary and technical discussion of the incident here.

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby SnickersSaysHi » Fri May 21, 2010 8:36 pm UTC

I can't stand the flinging around of the term "Obama's Katrina". Katrina was an unavoidable natural disaster. This was avoidable, really. We should have seen this coming when the rally cry, "Drill baby, Drill" started being thrown around. How would drilling a few offshore rigs do anything for our oil dependence? I'm in the belief that the offshore oil rigs are next to nothing when compared to the wells throughout the Middle East.

I find this article slightly compelling. Obama talked a big game and then clammed up as soon as things started getting real for him. He should push as much of his policy as he can because the outlook on "Four More Years!" is very grim.

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby phillipsjk » Sun May 23, 2010 12:07 am UTC

Apparently those flimsy booms aren't doing anything because they aren't being used properly:
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Omegaton » Sun May 23, 2010 12:56 am UTC

Forgive me if this has already been mentioned/linked, but it looks like the effects of the oil spill will reach the Arctic and Europe: http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/05/21/gulf.o ... vironment/

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Josephine » Sun May 23, 2010 1:57 am UTC

I was about to say something about how this isn't solely the problem of the United States, then I checked a map of international waters boundaries. The Gulf of Mexico isn't considered international waters. Who owns it?
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby scikidus » Sun May 23, 2010 4:24 pm UTC

nbonaparte wrote:I was about to say something about how this isn't solely the problem of the United States, then I checked a map of international waters boundaries. The Gulf of Mexico isn't considered international waters. Who owns it?

Wikipedia says the Gulf is part of the Atlantic Ocean, which I'm pretty sure means that it is, in fact, international.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Josephine » Sun May 23, 2010 5:06 pm UTC

This would say otherwise (also from wikipedia)
Spoiler:
Image
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby scikidus » Sun May 23, 2010 5:18 pm UTC

nbonaparte wrote:This would say otherwise (also from wikipedia)
Spoiler:
Image

I'm guessing the light pink lines denote ownership, So the US controls the northern half of the gulf, and Mexico and Cuba own other parts.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Josephine » Sun May 23, 2010 5:25 pm UTC

Ah, right, that would make sense.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Kain » Sun May 23, 2010 10:44 pm UTC

From my understanding (of the wikipedia article, and a bit I read about three years ago for a project) That pink line denotes the exclusive economic zone, places where the sovereign entity can restrict, say, fishing and oil drilling, to only their own nationals/national companies. Actual territorial waters are much smaller in area. Which of the two constitutes ownership, however, I have never quite understood. (Casino ships leave territorial waters, but stay in the eez, from what I understand).
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BP Oil Spill dissapointment

Postby valdivz » Fri Jun 04, 2010 1:10 pm UTC

So how does everyone feel about the BP oil spill?

I just find it really hard to believe that we don't have back up plans for this type of disaster.

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Re: BP Oil Spill dissapointment

Postby DSenette » Fri Jun 04, 2010 1:22 pm UTC

i'm from southern louisiana, so i've got a personal investment in this whole thing. i've been swimming, fishing, shrimping, boating, oyster gathering, etc... in the areas that are now being closed by this crap. i've lived in the marsh, i've walked on most of the beaches in LA where this crap if now floating up. standing on the beach in grand isle or fourchon, and looking south you can see the oil rigs out there just pumping away. growing up you just expected that they had some kind of backup plan for times when "the shit hit the fan", apparently our assumptions were wrong.

i think it points to the arrogance of the modern human. we build something, and we stand back from it and say "damn, that's an awesome something. i dare say it's the most awesome something i've ever seen, we are the shit". but we always forget the other awesome somethings that we've built and the fact that they're made of metal and operated by people, and we definitely always forget that these awesome things we build WILL fail at some point for some reason and that failure will cause some problem. no one seems to ever think about backup plans when they're making money.

i completely grasp the difficulty of deep sea drilling, it's not a trivial task. but that should make you that much more aware of the possible catastrophes that could occur. if you're drilling in 1000' of water or less, it's relatively easy to quickly cap a blown well, so maybe one BOP is cool. but in 5000'+ ? just one BOP? seems like you're asking for trouble. also, with the BOP in general, did the people who made these things never thing of testing it out WITH a drill pipe in the rig? "ok, it works great when the pipe is empty, but what if it fires while they're drilling?"
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Gulf Spill...Contained??

Postby phonon266737 » Fri Jun 04, 2010 4:03 pm UTC

LMRP Containment Operation Deployed
BP announced today that oil and gas is being received onboard the Discoverer Enterprise following the successful placement of a containment cap on top of the Deepwater Horizon's failed blow-out preventer (BOP). This follows the cutting and removal of the riser pipe from the top of the BOP's lower marine riser package (LMRP).
It is expected to take one or more days for flow rates of oil and gas to stabilize and it is not possible at this stage to estimate how much oil and gas will be captured by this containment system.

http://www.bp.com/extendedsectiongenericarticle.do?categoryId=40&contentId=7061813
• The LMRP containment cap was connected to the Discoverer Enterprise and moved to stand-by position at approximately 6:00 am CDT on June 3.
• The riser was cut above the LMRP with shears at approximately 9:00 am CDT on June 3.
• The LMRP cap was placed on top of the LMRP at approximately 8:35 pm CDT on June 3.
• Gas first reached the Discoverer Enterprise at approximately 11:00 pm CDT on June 3; oil followed at approximately 11:10 pm CDT.
• Operations are progressing as planned; increasing the flow of oil and gas to the surface and reducing the amount entering the Gulf of Mexico.

Here's a video
http://bp.concerts.com/gom/lmrp6_060310.htm

Well..lets all cross our fingers. But this sounds like good news!

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Kulantan » Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:24 pm UTC

The new cap doesn't appear to be a huge success.
BBC News wrote:US Coast Guard chief Adm Thad Allen said rough estimates showed that 1,000 barrels a day were being captured.

This is only a small part of the 12,000-19,000 barrels a day believed to be leaking and BP says it could take 48 hours to know if the system is working.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby phonon266737 » Fri Jun 04, 2010 5:37 pm UTC

Well, they just got the cap on last night. The novel part of this cap is that, when first placed, it does nothing except that now, the oil is leaking through, not a broken pipe, but a shut off valve. Because of all the things that have gone wrong so far, I can see reason to be cautious before you try and close that valve. I personally think they should have the robots weld the new cap onto the BOP before they go full-throttle with the containment.

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby jestingrabbit » Fri Jun 04, 2010 7:00 pm UTC

This link helped me understand the size of what is going on.

http://www.ifitwasmyhome.com/#loc=Sydne ... 867139&z=7
Last edited by jestingrabbit on Fri Jun 04, 2010 7:23 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Feddlefew » Fri Jun 04, 2010 7:09 pm UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:The link helped me understand the size of what is going on.

http://www.ifitwasmyhome.com/#loc=Sydne ... 867139&z=7


By the Unholy Cthulhu! That spill is almost the size of upstate New York. :shock:
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Dream » Fri Jun 04, 2010 7:24 pm UTC

That is a really good illustration. Edinburgh, by which I mean most of lowland Scotland.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Telchar » Fri Jun 04, 2010 7:28 pm UTC

http://www.ifitwasmyhome.com/#loc=Billi ... 832856&z=7

Spill over Billings, Montana. Montana is a little bigger than Germany.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Diadem » Fri Jun 04, 2010 8:39 pm UTC

How old is that picture?

The spill has reached Florida by now. So it's at least an order of magnitude bigger than shown in that picture.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Dream » Fri Jun 04, 2010 8:49 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:How old is that picture?

The spill has reached Florida by now. So it's at least an order of magnitude bigger than shown in that picture.

But, do you mean the pollution has, or the actual contiguous slick has? That's a bit different. I'm sure the pollution is moving far beyond the gulf by now.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Josephine » Sat Jun 05, 2010 1:51 am UTC

Dream wrote:
Diadem wrote:How old is that picture?

The spill has reached Florida by now. So it's at least an order of magnitude bigger than shown in that picture.

But, do you mean the pollution has, or the actual contiguous slick has? That's a bit different. I'm sure the pollution is moving far beyond the gulf by now.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/us_gulf_oil_spill

It's possible to pick up balls of tar on the Florida panhandle coast.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Kain » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:17 am UTC

The picture seems to be up to date (Remember, Florida is a really long state, and Pensacola is at the western tip of the panhandle). So far we of the peninsula have been lucky, but I certainly hope we don't have to rely on luck much longer.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Diadem » Sat Jun 05, 2010 12:00 pm UTC

Kain wrote:The picture seems to be up to date (Remember, Florida is a really long state, and Pensacola is at the western tip of the panhandle). So far we of the peninsula have been lucky, but I certainly hope we don't have to rely on luck much longer.

Ah, that explains. Didn't even know Florida had a panhandle, I thought it the slick had reached the west-coast beaches of Florida (is there a name for those?). Yeah, I suppose that picture could be correct then.
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby tastelikecoke » Sat Jun 05, 2010 3:11 pm UTC

That's a lot of oil. I'm not very knowledgable about this oil drillings but I well know that if you have an environmental problem go fix it!

Also I hate biofuels. It's the largest excuse of the century followed by Iraq.

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby CivilDefense700 » Sat Jun 05, 2010 4:04 pm UTC

Is it bad that every time I hear or think about the spill the Seinfeld episode involving the giant ball of oil comes to mind?

deep voice/ I'm covered in a giant ball of oilllll! /deep voice

Does that make me a bad person?
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Texas_Ben » Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:24 pm UTC

tastelikecoke wrote:That's a lot of oil. I'm not very knowledgable about this oil drillings but I well know that if you have an environmental problem go fix it!

What do you think they're trying to do?

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby Gears » Sat Jun 05, 2010 7:23 pm UTC

Wait long enough so they lose money from not having a working well and then ask for a bailout? not serious
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby TheKrikkitWars » Sat Jun 05, 2010 10:54 pm UTC

Gears wrote:Wait long enough so they lose money from not having a working well and then ask for a bailout? not serious

Hell, the US gov't could just agree to guaranteee the portion of the BP dividend that would be paid to pension investment funds. leaving BP free to spend willy nilly on sorting this out. :P
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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby davidz » Sun Jun 06, 2010 12:18 am UTC

hmm. interesting that the governor wants to limit the liability of BP to last 4 quarters of profits.

That's LAST YEAR'S PROFITS. ONE YEAR!

Lobbying must have been going on behind the scenes.

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby TheKrikkitWars » Sun Jun 06, 2010 12:53 am UTC

davidz wrote:hmm. interesting that the governor wants to limit the liability of BP to last 4 quarters of profits.

That's LAST YEAR'S PROFITS. ONE YEAR!

Lobbying must have been going on behind the scenes.


If the cost actually reaches a single year of profits for one of the worlds largest multinational oil companies; I'd be flabergasted.

According to BP's F&OI report, it's average yearly profit between 2005-2009 has been in the region of £20Bn a year (The arithmetic mean of the gross profits is 20.9024 billion pounds and of the profits adjusted for capital replacement cost 20.0616 billion pounds).

Even looking at 2009's reported £13bn Replacement cost profit (a 45% drop on 2008) that's still a staggering amount of money. Even when you consider the £10.5bn liability that BP has taken on in agreeing to leave it's dividend unchanged (which was important in stabilising their position in the market); that would still leave £2.5bn (3.6bn USD according to XE.com) to play with before BP incurs a loss.

Is the real cost of the cleanup to louisianna going to exceed $3.6bn? (as opposed to the imaginary cost which will no doubt be settled in court by hundreds of citizens ranging from those with a genunine losses warranting repairation to outright carpetbaggers).
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Oil Spill Siphoning is Finally Working, and We May Have Hope

Postby davidz » Sun Jun 06, 2010 2:51 am UTC

Forty Seven days into the crisis and several attempts at containment attempts by BP, the oil spill is finally getting controlled.

U.S. Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen said at a briefing in Theodore, Alabama that the containment cap solution BP implemented the week earlier was siphoning oil to waiting drill-ship even faster than originally expected.

Bob Fryar, senior VP of BP, told a meeting of mayors in Alabama that the latest undersea containment effort had gone "extremely well" so far.

The collection rate is still only about one-third of one day's flow from the oil geyser, but it could mark a turning point in the drama that has riveted the world and forced the Obama administration to reconsider plans to expand offshore oil drilling.

Allen said the full capacity of BP's containment device was about 15,000 bpd, the "upper limit" of the current leak control effort, while the leaking is estimated by the government to be 19,000 bpd. BP does not expect to fully halt the oil flow until August, when two relief wells are due to be completed.


Full Story:
http://wording.tv/united-states/oil-sip ... g-point-94

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Re: Gulf Coast oil spill may be worse than Exxon Valdez

Postby jestingrabbit » Sun Jun 06, 2010 8:59 am UTC

That tells you how bad this scene is. We're calling something that reduces the leak by a third, and up to about four fifths, a win.
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