Gulf Oil Spill Left Rhode Island-Sized Oily ‘Bathtub Ring’ On Seafloor, Study Finds

Nov 6, 2014

Photo: AP

By Seth Borenstein

The BP oil spill left an oily “bathub ring” on the sea floor that’s about the size of Rhode Island, new research shows.

The study by David Valentine, the chief scientist on the federal damage assessment research ships, estimates that about 10 million gallons of oil coagulated on the floor of the Gulf of Mexico around the damaged Deepwater Horizons oil rig.

Valentine, a geochemistry professor at the University of California Santa Barbara, said the spill from the Macondo well left other splotches containing even more oil. He said it is obvious where the oil is from, even though there were no chemical signature tests because over time the oil has degraded.

“There’s this sort of ring where you see around the Macondo well where the concentrations are elevated,” Valentine said. The study, published in Monday’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, calls it a “bathtub ring.”


 

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3 comments on “Gulf Oil Spill Left Rhode Island-Sized Oily ‘Bathtub Ring’ On Seafloor, Study Finds

  • @OP- Valentine, a geochemistry professor at the University of California Santa Barbara, said the spill from the Macondo well left other splotches containing even more oil. He said it is obvious where the oil is from, even though there were no chemical signature tests because over time the oil has degraded.

    Is it really obvious where it is from???

    http://www.cbsnews.com/news/27000-abandoned-gulf-oil-wells-may-be-leaking/

    More than 27,000 abandoned oil and gas wells lurk in the hard rock beneath the Gulf of Mexico, an environmental minefield that has been ignored for decades. No one – not industry, not government – is checking to see if they are leaking, an Associated Press investigation shows.

    The oldest of these wells were abandoned in the late 1940s, raising the prospect that many deteriorating sealing jobs are already failing.

    The AP investigation uncovered particular concern with 3,500 of the neglected wells – those characterized in federal government records as “temporarily abandoned.”

    Regulations for temporarily abandoned wells require oil companies to present plans to reuse or permanently plug such wells within a year, but the AP found that the rule is routinely circumvented, and that more than 1,000 wells have lingered in that unfinished condition for more than a decade. About three-quarters of temporarily abandoned wells have been left in that status for more than a year, and many since the 1950s and 1960s – even though sealing procedures for temporary abandonment are not as stringent as those for permanent closures.

    As a forceful reminder of the potential harm, the well beneath BP’s Deepwater Horizon rig was being sealed with cement for temporary abandonment when it blew April 20, leading to one of the worst environmental disasters in the nation’s history. BP alone has abandoned about 600 wells in the Gulf, according to government data.



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  • i’d strongly suggest we hype up the space program and find another planet to which we can escape the garbage heap we have created.



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  • It seems the clueless denialist science-duffers, are still tying to avoid the reality of the need to reduce CO2 emissions, by suggesting ways of creating new disasters, using their inept attempts to duck the issue, with ridiculously inadequate and unpredictable mechanical gizmos!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-30197085
    Schemes to tackle climate change could prove disastrous for billions of people, but might be required for the good of the planet, scientists say.

    That is the conclusion of a new set of studies into what’s become known as geo-engineering.

    This is the so far unproven science of intervening in the climate to bring down temperatures.

    These projects work by, for example, shading the Earth from the Sun or soaking up carbon dioxide.

    Ideas include aircraft spraying out sulphur particles at high altitude to mimic the cooling effect of volcanoes or using artificial “trees” to absorb CO2.

    .Long regarded as the most bizarre of all solutions for global warming, ideas for geo-engineering have come in for more scrutiny in recent years as international efforts to limit carbon emissions have failed.



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