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Rocky Kistner’s Blog

Oil well plugged...for now

Rocky Kistner

Posted July 16, 2010 in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, Moving Beyond Oil

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Check live feeds of the BP oil well below.

"The oil has been stopped!" Those were the words of Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser yesterday to a huge crowd of assembled fishermen, small business owners and residents of a town hall meeting with Kenneth Feinberg, administrator of BP's $20 billion claims fund. While that was music to the ears of everyone in the audience here in Port Sulphur, LA, there was no dancing in the aisles. Not yet. Everyone knows that after 88 days of spewing and countless disappointments over plugging this blowout that caution rules the day. But still there was relief.

Yesterday BP completely closed off the flow of oil into the Gulf and anxiously watched the pressure readings inside the tight-fitting containment dome that had been put in place 5 days ago. After several aborted attempts to start pressure testing the integrity of the well, government officials gave BP the green light to shut off the flow of oil and begin testing the pipeline that stretches miles below the ocean floor. There is great concern that the pipe may have been compromised somewhere and that when the containment dome cuts off the oil stream at the top then it may seep out of cracks somewhere in the pipe below and up through the ocean floor.

So far tests show that isn't happening. Pressure continues to build in the 18-foot tall, 70-ton containment device, which is a good thing, showing that oil is not escaping somewhere below in through a potential crack in the pipe. Engineers are looking for optimal pressure readings of 8,000 to 9,000 psi. Press reports say as of today--July 16--pressure readings are about 6,700 psi and rising.

So far, so good. The test will likely continue another 24-48 hours before engineers and govenment officials are convinced the pipe integrity is sound. They will then begin to lower some of the pressure by opening the containment cap valves and syphoning a manageable amount of oil to surface ships. A new huge container ship called the Helix Producer that can process 25,000 barrels of oil a day has also been put in place. BP says it can now collect 80,000 barrels of oil a day with the flotilla of ships it has at the Deepwater Horizon site. That's as long as the weather cooperates and hurricanes stay clear of the offshore operations.

BP continues to drill two major relief wells miles below the ocean floor that are intended to plug the well for good. But that drilling operation is not expected to be completed until sometime in August.

To watch live action of robots maneuvering around the new containment cap, check out the live feeds below (not all screens may be active). 

Live feeds from Enterprise ROV 2

   

Live feeds from Skandi ROV1

 

Live feeds from Viking Poseidon – ROV 1

 

Live feeds from Viking Poseidon – ROV 1

 

Live feeds from Boa Deep C – ROV 1

 

Live feeds from Q4000 – ROV 1

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Comments

Kathleen WobieMay 29 2010 09:28 AM

Just think of all the money that will now be spent on clean up that could have been spent on alternative energy solutions. This is a grievous example of cowardice and greed that has led to this situation - cowardice of our government officials and greed of corporations like BP, Halliburton et al.

PhilMay 29 2010 11:22 AM

I have discovered BP's emergency planning manual. All executives will cross their fingers at the same time and shout " Nix the leak " 3 times.

Samuel FryMay 30 2010 06:00 AM

I think that BP deserves to be stripped down and have their company taken away!

They are idiots, they could have stopped the oil leak, its all a conspiracy to suck fed grants for clean up and to start the NWO where everyone has to look up to the Gov't for help and then they take control of everything

LaurenMay 30 2010 06:19 AM

If you watch very closely you will see that this feed is far from being LIVE but rather is about a minute and a half clip set to repeat.

Charles CorkrenMay 30 2010 08:54 AM

It is my opinion that BP more than anyone wants this gash in the gulf stopped. They were drilling to make money, and if all had gone well, they would have been lauded for making a tech break through. It is foolish to think that they are not doing all possible to stem the flow and cauterize this hemorrage in their profits.

Jarvin CrowMay 30 2010 09:19 AM

Lauren...Try looking at the clock feed in the upper right...

John DoeMay 30 2010 09:20 AM

It is amazing this has not happened before. As a offshore driller i personaly think this mistake was not just a matter of time, but to what company this happened to first. There is thousands of drilling rigs in the gulf, many of wich are ran much more dangerously and cheaper than the BP rig.

and smithMay 30 2010 09:49 AM

It is a tragic example of the hyper capitalist state of the "first world" we live in today. Since Reagan/Thatcher period and going thru Clinton/Blair up thru now, there has been this nearly ruthless Freakonomic Ideology supported by the Chicago School of Economics (Greenspan, etc.), succesfully pushing thru a type of Socialism. Yes a socialism. One where the top bracket exponentialy increase their wealth and if things fall apart are bailed out. One where reckless ventures into high-risk endeavors (off shore drilling for instance) have little to no oversight, and little to no legitimate plan B's if things should go wrong. This situation is not mystical, nor a matter of "greed". Its a matter of the structure of our society today. And it can be changed. But people have to get over believing that the "free market" is a kind of mystical God. People have to wake up to their own power to think again. At the least. To start to demand a fair and free world for more then just the top 10% and the luxury life. This is not America. This is plutocracy. And it needs to end.

Jarvin CrowMay 30 2010 10:12 AM

Wait til they cut the BoP off...then we'll see the whole fury of this...It will look like ol' faithful...

Ken GerckenMay 30 2010 10:13 AM

I am sure you have thought of this before but incase it hasn't been: Could you put something like an inertube deflated around a 6 inch pipe inserted like in heart surgery angiplastic(?) once in place inflate the tube and continue to syphon the oil off to relieve the flow. This was in the simplist of terms but just a thought

linda kavalecMay 30 2010 10:45 AM

70% of oil is used for transportation in the US.
We do NOTneed oil. And if Americans were given the option to drive 100% electric cars our "oil addiction" would be healed in short order.
NIMH batteries have been powering hundrends of electric cars successfully (in the US) for the past 13 years. Why don't we know about them? Chevron (go OIL!) owns the battery patents.
President Obama can exercise eminent domain over these patents so we can all drive zero emission, clean, efficient electric cars and be free from all already!
Want to drive a car powered by the sun that costs two cents per mile?
And be free of oil?
see twocentspermile.org.

j connerMay 30 2010 11:31 AM

I beleive they could put a bigger piece of pipe over the one where the oil is coming out, and clamp bands around it and put a elbow on it and point it toward the top of the ocean. B P, There is a way, its something simple . Take some advice from a simple person. or maybe put spikes on rubber and stick it in the other pipe, and when the pressure starts pushining on the rubber, the spikes would open and stick to the walls of the gushing pipe

katieMay 30 2010 12:16 PM

Did the Exxon catastrophie not teach the government and other oil company's the importance of preventative maintenance? My gosh, the stories of all the problems they were having just hours prior to the explosion that were overlooked or disregarded. why???

Jarvin CrowMay 30 2010 12:27 PM

Nuke that puppy shut!

Chris SCHNEIDERMay 30 2010 01:19 PM

Bp has an extremely bad track record when it comes to safety and environmental concerns. It seems to me that if no one has ever drilled to this depth before than all possible scenarios should have been considered. A plan for for just this type of incident should already have been thought thru. No one should ever attempt anything as dangerous as this without having some kind of backup plan just in case something like this does happen. What were they thinking? "Oh we are just gonna drill here even though we dont know how to stop something if something does goes wrong." Thats just irresponsible and BP needs to be made aware, as do all big oil, that everything you do affects more than you know. If it were up to me i would make sure that BP never drilled on these shores again!

Robert S. ReedMay 30 2010 02:10 PM

As a retired plumber, retired PHD mechanical engineer and college professor. It seems obvious to me that a bladder should be pushed into the well and inflated to create a seal. The pressure will likely be in the thousands of psi. (3 or 4). I am sure that Goodyear and Firestoane will make one for this purpose, Dr. Reed

Allan B.May 30 2010 04:32 PM

Out of great concern for the Gulf waters and all that it influences, I have given considerble thought to solutions for stopping this oil leak. Fortunately, this is just a plumbing leak. I have several ideas I'm sure will work and have drawings and more details for anyone interested and glad to fax. What they are trying to do now with welding on a top hat or cap is a solution of sorts but lacking in overall effectiveness. That cap should have a larger cap or bell welded to it which is really a manifold with valves on each port of it for multiple hose hookups leading back to the surface for delivery to tankers. These hoses could be bouyed to the surface for the routed capture of oil instead of allowing careless spueing into the open sea. These valves could be turned off or on by a drill if the robotic hands couldn't do the job of turning. My initial thoughts were a rubber hose type coppling with a screw clamp fastened to the pipe, but if they can weld, all the better.

Hubert MorrisonMay 30 2010 04:55 PM

Please have a look at our website our company really does have a solution to the oil spill problem.

ConstantineMay 30 2010 06:03 PM

From: Constantine Balakiryan, PhD, Professor
I have developed a concept to reduce the ecological catastrophe of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
In my opinion, the unique solution to reduce scales of ecological accident in Mexican
Gulf is to immediately start downloading liquid nitrogen into the oil well’s breakthroughs.
The low temperature will increase the viscosity of oil and may even freeze it.
The freezing will slow down the speed of emission of oil and make it easier to facilitate the collection of oil in the off shore sector.
BP has tried cement, mud and a dome to contain the oil spill. The “Top Kill” concept has not worked and will not work, it is dead concept.
So, BP wasted time with “top kill”?
And a new plan “B” of the BP only exacerbates the ecological situation.
I can offer “Know-How”If you would like to discuss this concept with me please contact me:
Constantine Balakiryan
4721 N. 40-th STR.
Phoenix, AZ Phoenix
Phone: 602-618-4222

MarleneMay 30 2010 06:13 PM

Once this terrible event is over there should be a tax created on the oil industry to build preventative stations reasonably close to the coast every so many miles in areas where oil rigs exist. We have firestations in our cities, counties, and forest, why don't we have prevention stations that have on hand any and all needed supplies ready to deploy at a moments notice, such as hoses, booms, skimmers, etc., whatever is proven effective in tackeling leaks of any magnitude. Not every station would need to be manned. Employees could travel to the closest station for deployment of the equipment and materials. My overwhelming concern is that BP is stalling for time to get the relief wells anchored in on their sight in hopes of insuring the public outcry soon to come won't be able to dislodge their new oil rigs foothold once the money has been spent to place them. Right now the spill continues to give them a green light to erect more oil rigs on the well as if to be the only real solution. In other words, some of the efforts were never meant to cap the leak, but to buy time and pacify the public. If so, this is unbridled greed beyond belief. I hope I'm wrong. If capping off a plumbing pipe proves to be this difficult, not one more ocean well should be allowed drilled until it can be proven there are successful methods in place for future leaks.

LaurenMay 31 2010 05:05 AM

Only a truly ignorant person would suggest the use of a nuclear weapon to solve this problem. Also...I am well aware of the clock in the corner, but it could still easily be a repeating clip with a continuous counter or an some other kind of altered feed set to run a clock continuously.
Think outside the bun.
and don't think for a second that a nuclear explosion would do anything but create a much larger problem.

Bob DuttonMay 31 2010 06:20 AM


Loop current = 24M Cubic Meters/sec

Oil Leak = .05 Cubic Meters/sec

Dilution factor =

24000000/.05 = 480 Million

The spill is probably already at equilibrium with forces of decay such as dilution, bacterial degradation, evaporation, etc. All the oil will be eaten by bacteria within weeks. The rate of oil consumption by bacteria about doubles for each 10 degree C rise in temperature. Therefore, we would expect about 8x the rate of recovery as compare to Prince William Sound.

AJMay 31 2010 07:03 AM

it should break our hearts...it breaks mine.

mikeMay 31 2010 07:16 AM

we will resolve this at some point but we should be aware the odds are great that between the number of rigs and the potential for hurricanes in the 3 to 5 range, the gulf will suffer more

Bryan SylvesterMay 31 2010 07:29 AM

I live in Mexico Beach,Fl.. It is really hard for me not to blow my fuse at this point. I live in a tourist town. Our resturants are fresh seafood caught off our shores. Though there is no "oil" around here yet, our town is being killed by this disaster. I lost my job because of this. I don't make a lot of money just minimum wage, i can't provide for my wife, we are forced to move. i'm am really not worried about myself though. It's the ecosystem. So they cap off the oil eventually, but the damage is done. BP can't pay for the wldlife we lose, just clean up efforts and kissing our asses. I don't think our goverment should step in and help bail them out, this is their mess. let them go BANKRUPT!!! When natural disasters happen that's understandable, but this is a man made disaster. They (BP) should be paying a lot more than what they have, but no, it's us that has to pay the price and deal with other people's problems. I don't know what else to say but my heart is with the animals that lose this battle.

Rick LoNigroMay 31 2010 08:21 AM

Check out the comment by Hubert Morrison above and the link to his company showing their product that is used for soaking up an oil spill it's pretty amazing and if these guys are'nt contacted by BP or the Federal Government something is really wrong with them

Mike PollardMay 31 2010 10:12 AM

It's incredible that all these people who are decrying corporate America are the same people who are eager to trust government--one of today's most bloated and incompentent bureaucracies.

Then there's all the advocacy for alternative energy. Sounds great, but develop and deliver it inexpensively. You won't need to bully people to use it; they'll jump at the chance.

Linda AldridgeMay 31 2010 10:20 AM

This is a castastrophe of epic proportions! The lives of many (animals and humans) will be affected in many different horrible ways. With all the solutions mentioned above, one has to wonder if BP has any idea of how to solve this monster they have unleashed. It seems that large corporations are bent on bleeding Mother Earth to her death for the sake of the almighty dollar.

GeorgeMay 31 2010 10:27 AM

It is too bad we as a country have to put up with BP and their short cut drilling methods. It sure makes it difficult on the other drilling companies that are drilling safely.

Rick RubyMay 31 2010 10:30 AM

I totaly agree with you Mr LoNigro, That said if Mr Reed is correct 3 to 4k psi, his Idea to fill the pipe with a blatter and inflate is a very good Idea. Is it possible to grasp the pipe and shove the bladder in, 5000 ft down, with that much pressure behind it, ?, I assume it is a steel pipe, after installing the bladder could you use the Jaws of life to crush the end and then inject the blater with epoxy resin. They use sub zero resin in space! 2 stage bladder the first stage will use air and the second stage will be fillied with resin. Think about it!

william dagnellMay 31 2010 10:41 AM

as a former oil worker, i would like to say to all that be assured they are doing all that they can. i can see that people think it looks easy, but even the fires in kuwait were very hard to put out. i do not want to make lite of this spill, but at a mile deep,and ever changing currents, and to say that most efforts have been from around the word. this is going to take efforts from all.

Rick RubyMay 31 2010 10:46 AM

Sorry about the spelling in my last post......Bladder!

Claude GalipeaultMay 31 2010 11:28 AM

Don't over think the solution!! If they really want to plug the leak a series of flexible disc baffles attached to a threaded rod that is inserted into the well pipe can work. Think of a "wine stopper". Once the threaded rod is inserted in the pipe it is twisted to cause the series of flexible disks to stack one upon another. As the reinforced rubber disks collect they become a stronger and stronger cap. I have called BP and my senator to share a detailed plan and prototype. No response! [broken pipe] 00

Rick RubyMay 31 2010 11:32 AM

I beleive I heard BP tryed to inject balls into the pipe? so is it possible to inject into the well head? As a person that works on the highway in the middle of the night with equipment that breaks down, with no place to go for part's, One would be suprised what can be fabricated in a pinch. I realize it may seem as if I dont understand the difficulties, how could I, I work on Freeway. As for the company is doing everything it can to stop the leak, I beleive there trying to protect the pipe so they can retap it when the time comes. I belive they lost that right and should not be allowed in any waters again.

Lawrence StaabMay 31 2010 11:39 AM

Galipeault's idea can work!!! He said he has prototype. example below:

[oil pipe] 000

Frank Mcclain Jr.May 31 2010 12:00 PM

Just an idea but can't they put an over sized pipe over the exsisting pipe. The weight of the pipe from the surface should settle enough into the sand to where the oil should be contained inside the pipe.

Rick RubyMay 31 2010 12:57 PM

look at the equipment!!! I had no idea they had that capability...Iam calling bullsh!% on BP and all the (their doing everything they can people) Looks to me like someone is trying to take the attention away from something else. My gut feeling is I am waisting my time with the diversion....And sorry to the people of the Gulf, who's next!

Clayton HernandezMay 31 2010 01:54 PM

I would like to say Im very disaponted with whats going on. I know its hard for them to try and fix the problum but i would like to say I have worked in the Oil fuild for about 5 years and I can say there chose of optchins are kinda week. I do understand its a mile down but what needs to be done is stop wasting time by letting the public belive that the methods are going to work. Get to the root of the problem and get it done. I dont want to her how hard it it I already know how ard it is but I also understand this is a really teribel mess up and well BP is acontibel for there actions and what needs to be done is they need to stop messing around hiding what there doing and alow help to STOP this disaster.

Giuseppe AntognozziMay 31 2010 02:18 PM

HEY GUYS,
I have a suggestion to stop the oil leak. Please check out the url above and let me know what you think. I might be able to provide a better suggestion if you provide more details about the limitations you are dealing with (ex: water depth, oil pressure, visibility etc.). I think this is a simple but effective solution, once you can slow down the oil flow or even better stop it you can pump some cement and seal this well once and for ALL .. GOOD LUCK !!!
Joe
757.56.8835

TaleedMay 31 2010 02:27 PM

Are you kidding me? They haven't cleaned the oil spill yet? And know its killing creatures in the sea and above the sea like seagulls. All this for oil to be pumped out? The carless situations of oil greed like this needs to examined correctly by health inspectors who come and inspect the companies oil manufacturing. If they don't examine correctly, then the companies end up having shit mistakes like this. WTF! These companies need to pull it together and i am guessing there won't be a next time for them. All of ya'll who comment on this website probably live in illinois, new york and upper states in the north. I live in Texas the beginning of where all this oil spill.

GardianMay 31 2010 02:49 PM

I have worked in the [Land] Oilfield.
1. Whoever thought you could pump mud into/down an uncontrolled well head should be sent home.
2. Do they have nothing to unbolt the top flange? They need to unbolt and place a new tree on the top flange. Then they can pump down whatever they want.
3. Sawing away that mess on top is a waste of time, they can't seal that at over 2000 psi.

JuliaMay 31 2010 03:10 PM

All I have to say is that the BP people are nothing but idiots that want to make money and they just ended up messing with the emviroment. UGH I'm really hating BP right now and now they are seeking governmeant help? IDIOTS!

alec mitchellMay 31 2010 03:42 PM

Cut the existing pipe cleanly like a plumbers tube cutter. This will cause a massive oil flow. Then have to offer on a mile long pipe with a sleeve adaptor to slip over the stub end. the seal could be inflated as suggested above or use a huge version of Legris type push on connector. Regards, Alec Mitchell-Engineer

kevinMay 31 2010 03:47 PM

Simply amazing that Cenco who later changed its name to Transocean already had an identical spill in the gulf in 1979 and employed the same techniques to try and stop the flow of oil with the same results-----they finally stopped it with pressure relief wells completed 3 months later.

Rick RubyMay 31 2010 07:26 PM

I just read in the local news paper that BP has received over 8000 calls and are looking at 230 Idea's from the public.

Upon further investigation it apears BP is concerned that if they close the well head off totaly that the back presure could blow the head off.

Lisa MartinMay 31 2010 07:49 PM

This is wonderful that the poor gulf people can have this valuable windfall washing up right at their doors! All those fisherman will never have to buy fuel again...They can scoop it up for free!!!

Shannon FarleyMay 31 2010 07:51 PM

It appears to me that these robots are not ready for demolition work.

Shannon FarleyMay 31 2010 07:58 PM

I wonder if they use lead based paint on those pipes ...

Big Daddy DeanJun 1 2010 09:21 AM

Comment removed.

, RickJun 1 2010 10:46 AM

Hey Dean. Why not tell us how you really feel! by the way.......I agree with you...Good thing I'am not incharge....I would have pulled the whole well out and stuffed a rov in the hole.
Not only that the second I got the pinchers around the pipe I would have chopped it "that second"!!!!

Rob SchwerdtfegerJun 1 2010 11:08 AM

You can not hold a needle and thread at arms length and expect to thread it! There should be a locking device which holds the saw stable while grasping the pipe it's cutting. We've (Polite Plbg & Htg Inc., Rdgwd, NY), done it many times when cutting or threading a pipe. Otherwise you are certainly going to bind and mabe even buckle and break the blade.
If that happens and/when your cut is halfway through, you'll have made you're job extremely complicated to complete, especially while in a cloud of spewing oil.

Frank of 'West Palm tar beach'Jun 1 2010 11:13 AM

Having done some interesting work in my life, I can tell you the challenges of floating in water and cutting in a precise way is extremely difficult. The blade WILL bind.
Some of the ideas here(bladder and spikes, etc) seem more viable than cutting it off and hoping for a 'suction and pump' to do it.
They never tried to use that 'tower box' MODIFIED with a suction pump on it(like a heated jet pump) Then a series of boosters to the surface. My way does not increase well presure AND would contain more oil...I Think !!! We need Einstien on this. I worry ya'll aren't thinking BIG enough.

current residentJun 1 2010 11:13 AM

great seafood, no need to grease the pan

Patrick ScannellJun 1 2010 11:21 AM

Put a lead ingot down the pipe and use your robotic clamp to crush the pipe around the lead and seal the pipe. I know it will work, the hydraulic arm has enough power to do the job. Your welcome JARHEAD

Rob Schwerdtfeger, NYC Lic'd Master Plbr.Jun 1 2010 11:25 AM

Cut pipe (cleanly, Cutting device secured to line being cut), Fit *Dresser coupling and valve in opened position onto pipe. Secure/tighten compression coupling in place. Shut valve. DONE!
Any Licensed Plumber who has ever had to repair a broken water main valve 'on the fly' knows what I'm talking about. It's a mess but it'll work. Perhaps the Only solution!!

Frank of 'West Palm tar beach'Jun 1 2010 11:38 AM

My friend who dives pointed out the presure: 33ft= 1atm - I think it is 2273psi -- Your ingot could be shot back out from well presure or worst rupture it somewhere else.
My big shop vac would be safer and it is basically built. We just need a delta 'P' sufficient to overcome its static presure, heated water and a big enough suction opening at the jet pump part. The boosters are off the shelf. Seems do-able.

RobJun 1 2010 11:39 AM

Wouldn't it be a shame to find out that all this delay is due BP not wanting to sacrifice all their work/costs of drilling this well and be able to utilize it after the catastrophe is over. Think about it . Will this oil ever reach their shores? (other than in dollars?) Nahhhhh.

Frank of 'West Palm tar beach'Jun 1 2010 12:15 PM

Now they are uttering a canopy idea - They could have dropped a golf dome down there a month ago.
Obama is on it now, Duh! a month late huh? Bush would have been impeached by now... My fear Rob is that NO ONE in authority is listening or even competent anymore.
CEO = C ancer of E ffective O perations.
These guys is no different, just indifferent.
Well, we got change for sure...$5 gas+tax ---

Frank of 'West Palm tar beach'Jun 1 2010 12:31 PM

I find that historically these situations have only been solved with "relief wells" -- I am getting ill - Even with relief, it could take a l o n g time for the presure to subside. The leak will continue the whole time.....
This is just the last nail in the Gulf's coffin. Those poor people can't survive there anymore. I'll shut up now...and pray....

TTA1Jun 1 2010 01:26 PM

Trust me people when I tell you - If you think BP is showing us all the leak you are unbelievably gullible. First off, the reason the Top Kill won't work is the multiple leaks in the wellhead pipe (of which we've only had the privilege of seeing a few!) Of course they can't get the mud down the well when half of it is spewing out as they pump it in!!! In addition, when you think about the investment already made to create this well, simply thinking that they will cap it and forget it is crazy!! That's why their first two attempts to contain were fixes that allow them to continue collecting the oil/gas. As will this current attempt!!! None of us (nor BP- being nice here) in reality knows how far down the line there are leaks.
In summary, the ball has been dropped by our REACTIVE NOT PROACTIVE GOV'T ONCE AGAIN. iF YOU CAN'T FIX A LEAK IN 5000+FT OF WATER - YOU SHOULDN'T DRILL IT IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!!!!!!!!

TTA1Jun 1 2010 01:34 PM

By the way, anyone have a link to a true live feed (ha-ha), getting tired of watching this feed repeat where they crimp the riser with the claw. It's repeated at least 3 times now!

RickJun 1 2010 01:42 PM

There probably calculating where the pipe will fall as to not damage the riser when cut,and begin the prosses of making $$$ again. BP should also know that Obama and his Admin are already looking into how the can turn this into a govt run well...My simple little take.

TTA1Jun 1 2010 03:16 PM

OK - anyone got a link to the feed that's been on CNN? This isn't the one...AND it further validates what I've been saying - there are multiple leaks - ALSO can anyone explain what the pipe is at the floor? How can that be cut and have a riser placed on it when it's on it's side? Is that the portion of the wellhead past the riser?

canadianJun 1 2010 06:01 PM

showing in the vidio would you not hold the pipe that you are trying to cut to eliminate binding of the saw

Constantine BalakiryanJun 2 2010 03:16 AM

BP testing President Obama’s patience
Constantine Balakiryan, PhD, Professor
The 43rd day is growing huge oil slick on the surface of the Mexican Gulf, with the dimensions exceeding the territory of many countries and many States.
How long this can be continued?
Does BP have sufficient technological resources to close the damned holes?
They certainly do.
Then, what is the real reason they aren’t resolving the problem, for example, using my know-how and equipment for freezing the oil with liquid nitrogen?
The point is that blocking well BP will lose the"frosting on the cake”.
That's why BP proposed a new project "B," which assumes not only drilling new wells, but also construction a new platform.
For this escapade BP requests another 60-90 days.
It is easy to imagine what kind ecological disaster awaits US, if plan «B” is approved.
Very important to consider that the hurricane season is started, so the first hurricane sends in hell, all these shielding floats and oil will gush out to the territory not only the coastal states of the Mexican Gulf.
It is time to act.
Tomorrow will be too late.

Keith E. BriggsJun 2 2010 05:13 AM

slide a huge open valve over the cut pipe then weld or bolt it in place .
then slowly close it ?!?

Keith E. BriggsJun 2 2010 05:17 AM

sorry I just read the post from a certified plumber and he said the same thing .

Allen GrudenichJun 2 2010 07:04 AM

Would it be possible to outfit a couple large tanker ships to skim the surface of the gulf and at least attempt to clean up the oil that has already been leaked out? Some type of large vacuum/ pump rigged to the tankers, siphon the contaminated oil from the gulf, filter it and release it back. Sort of the same principal as treating salt water except with ships. Even if it takes time to outfit the tankers. At least they would be ready for (God help us) the next catastrophe.

Stephen HughesJun 2 2010 09:14 AM

BP CEO & COMPANY OWNERS SHOULD GO TO JAIL FOR A LONG TIME.

David MarshJun 2 2010 09:38 AM

Is there any better angle? link?

this is privateJun 2 2010 10:00 AM

I think it's stupid.!

Sven WilliamsJun 2 2010 10:02 AM

I believe that about 90% of the blame for this colossal mess up lays at governments feet....They can't do anything else right....so it fits...

Peter SJun 2 2010 10:16 AM

This is NOT a simple "plumbing" problem. The pressure in the riser is around 8,000 psi inside a 20 inch diameter riser...figure out the TOTAL pressure; it's around 1200 TONS over the 20"diameter pipe. It's a lot more difficult to cap than people realize.

BevisJun 2 2010 11:27 AM

Comment removed.

Dave WhiteJun 2 2010 11:31 AM

This "live video" looks like a video loop - the frames keep reversing and repeating...

Rob Schwerdtfeger, NYC Lic'd Master Plbr.Jun 2 2010 11:34 AM

Okay boys and girls, here's todays advice.... From want I can see on the video being shown, it appears that the pipe buckled ...(gee, didn't someone suggest that might happen).... and the folding result is squeezing the blade from rotating. IF that's the case, you must apply pressure from the opposite side of the pipe to effectively OPEN the cut on the line, so that the cutting apparatus can be withdrawn. I usually have my helper stand behind it and carefully apply pressure towards me. Watch your fingers!!
Who's running this operation?... Moe Larry and Curley?? Jok'ing aside, good luck. Rob.

BevisJun 2 2010 11:34 AM

Comment removed.

canadianJun 2 2010 12:15 PM

What is BP thinking by cutting this pipe, when it is cut and removed it going to be a free for all anyway so just unbolt the flange and stab another master valve on top in the open positoin, bolt it down as the fluid is rising to surface through the siphon tube and then they can slowly close the valve

Richard BaileyJun 2 2010 12:44 PM

Bolting on an open valve is a tried and true technique, at least on the surface. Can't see why it wouldn't work here also. I don't know why there isn't a valve below on the main riser assembly.??? Duh...Yea, Moe, Larry and Curly.

L KellettJun 2 2010 01:55 PM

WHERE THE HELL IS ROBERT BALLARD? THE BP DOLTS OBVIOUSLY CANNOT CONTROL THEIR OWN DEVICE, LET SOMEONE ELSE TRY!

Experienced OneJun 2 2010 02:59 PM

Helloooo, why does something like this emulate a full moon? Why do so many people have opinions when they demonstrate complete ignorance of the subject? Any tax on the oil companies of ten cents becomes a fifteen cent increase in gasoline, DUH!!! Have all those brilliant suggestions come from people who realize that performing work at this well head is more difficult than manipulating the rovers on MARS??? Sure this is a disaster and maybe some incompetence or criminal behavior was involved; but give it a break. If you ever figure out what has happened to our nation in the past year, this will seem like a picnic. Go, educate yourselves (not at some communist run university but in the school of hard knocks), then come back with some solutions and intelligent opinions. If we needed more ignorant nagging and griping, we could just listen to the "activists" on the other politically correct (ignorant) subjects.

john bisgroveJun 2 2010 04:27 PM

BP Saw Gets Stuck. Diamonds not as Durable as Human Arrogance.

Sara ShieldsJun 3 2010 08:49 AM

The Gulf Spill is more destructive and catastrophic than any environmental accident we have experienced. We cannot wait three months for the relief wells. The entire coastal area of the U.S. will never recover.
It would be best for the President to declare the spill area a SuperFund clean up site. This designation would put the EPA in charge of the clean up. Not the coast guard, not BP. BP has been sadly incapable but they specialize in oil drilling, not oil clean up. The EPA is empowered and has the resources via SuperFund to start a massive assault on the oil. BP can pay the fines/cost via the Fund and step away from the process. The navy with industry resources should be able to shut the well off before the relief wells are needed. We cannot wait Mr. President! Action must be taken now to save the gulf coast from unbelievable destruction!

James CahnJun 3 2010 11:10 AM

Sara Shields, what makes you believe that the Navy can shut the oil off in the Gulf of Mexico? If they could, why would they not have. And you qualify your comment with "with industry resources" What resources are you talking about? Let's face it, if there were effective resources, someone would already have used them to shut the oil off. I empathize with your frustration, but, it's easy to be an armchair quarterback. It's very difficult to look at the reality of the situation which unfortunately is that the Gulf of Mexico is and will be destroyed irreparably regardless of what we do now. In 1989, there was a similar incident off the coast of Mexico. There will be more incidents in the future. Think of all the wells that are there. One good earthquake and they ALL leak? Once the oceans of our planet are fouled, how will human's survive? One more question, where do all these dispersants end up? In the rain? Where does the rain fall? Where does our water come from? How much cancer will result? No one knows. In the name of profit, we are destroying ourselves--not the planet. It will still be here when we are all gone.

kevin FowkeJun 4 2010 05:49 AM

Give BP a break they are doing there best to stop the well leak. If you feel that strong about saving the planet walk or cycle eveywhere - and sell your seconds cars! Oh and all these armchair engineers there talent is obviously wasted.

rudy laucknerJun 4 2010 07:54 AM

why cant they just unbolt the cupling remove the bad pipe and install another one. All the did was cut the pipe the original cupling is still there.

normanJun 4 2010 06:33 PM

It's too simple, a open valve slid over the pipe and secured and then closed would work. It doesn't matter if the pressure differential is over 6000 lbs. Just use a higher rated valve. It doesn't have to be a perfect fit to be better than what they have done so far. It can be secured by chaining it to the bop so it doesn't blow off before closing the valve. It seems they are afraid that the bop and piping isn't cemented good enough to withstand the increase in pressure if they close it. This stinks from the very beginning.

GardianJun 5 2010 03:03 AM

There has to be something they are not telling us.
Not unbolting the top flange makes no sense.
By unbolting the top flange they would have a clean/flat surface to work with.
My guess is the problem would be the drill stem inside the pipe.
Question is, at this point, do they had anything to lose? I don't think it could be any worse.

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