June 23rd, 2010
01:07 PM ET

Day 65: Latest developments in Gulf oil disaster

[Updated at 11:07 p.m.] Here are the latest developments on the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, which unfolded after an explosion aboard the drilling rig Deepwater Horizon on April 20:

LATEST DEVELOPMENTS

– BP on Wednesday night successfully repositioned a containment cap over the underwater gusher in the Gulf of Mexico after it removed the device earlier in the day when an undersea robot struck it.

– Obama administration lawyers on Wednesday night filed documents in federal court in New Orleans, Louisiana, signaling their intention to appeal Tuesday's ruling striking down a six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling. The administration also asked the court to delay lifting the ban until an appeals court reviews the case.

– The request for a stay until the appeal is heard later this summer will be considered by Judge Martin Feldman, who firmly struck down the drilling ban, declaring it "arbitrary and capricious" in his ruling Tuesday. He could rule on the government's request as early as Thursday, officials said.

CLEANUP AND RECOVERY EFFORTS

– The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Wednesday reopened 8,000 square miles of fishing areas in the Gulf of Mexico after it failed to observe oil in the previously restricted zones. The most significant reopening is an area south of Mississippi. Smaller areas also were reopened off the Louisiana and central Florida coasts.

– About 5,500 barrels of oil (231,000 gallons) were collected from midnight to noon Wednesday, and about 4,625 barrels of oil (194,250 gallons) and 19.7 million cubic feet of natural gas were flared, BP said.

– The Baldwin County, Alabama, coroner said Wednesday that a 55-year-old charter boat captain who was working for BP in cleanup efforts died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. William Allen Kruse's death was announced earlier Wednesday by the oil spill incident commander, Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen. Another oil recovery worker has died in a swimming accident, Allen said.

– A tropical disturbance in the Caribbean raised fears of a stronger storm forming and heading possibly to oil-affected areas in the Gulf. The National Hurricane Center said the disorganized storm had a 30 percent chance of intensifying. Allen said he has discussed plans to get the two BP oil recovery ships disconnected from the well and moved off scene if needed.

– Bob Dudley has been appointed president and chief executive officer of BP's Gulf Coast Restoration Organization, BP said Wednesday in a statement.

– Dudley said BP is making its oil disaster response organization permanent. He said the oil company will contribute more resources to local and federal government recovery efforts and make sure the claims process is transferred smoothly to Kenneth Feinberg, the director of a $20 billion compensation fund.

– Government estimates say up to 2.5 million gallons of oil could be flowing into the Gulf daily.

– Mark Castlow and Jimbo Meador have a solution for saving hundreds of oil-covered birds along the Gulf of Mexico - special boats designed to help struggling wildlife. However, they also have a problem: despite help from musician Jimmy Buffett, BP and the feds aren't helping them get the boats in the hands of rescuers.

POLITICS

– Interior Secretary Ken Salazar told a Senate panel Wednesday that he will look into issuing a new, less restrictive drilling ban in the near future. He was making a case for a pause on drilling until the cause for the BP spill is fully understood. Salazar appeared before the subcommittee with newly appointed Bureau of Ocean Energy Director Michael Bromwich.

– Bromwich vowed to a Senate panel Wednesday that he would do all he could to root out "shocking behavior" that he hopes is not pervasive. Bromwich told lawmakers he would focus on industry oversight and ridding the agency of corruption.

"If it's severe enough, they should lose their jobs," Bromwich said of employees' improper behavior.

– British Prime Minister David Cameron will have a bilateral meeting with President Obama on Saturday afternoon and will talk about BP and the oil spill, Cameron's office confirmed. The meeting will happen on the sidelines of the G-20 summit taking place this weekend in Toronto, Canada.

Cameron told the House of Commons on Wednesday he had discussed BP in phone calls with Obama, and stressed the company is prepared to meet its obligations to fund the cleanup and compensate those whose businesses have been blighted by the spill.

soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. BreakingNewsBlog.us

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    now all the Press seem less interested to talk about this problem... the oil spill's news are no longer in the Google News main page... BP (as always) doesn't listen nor answer to anyone... and, at 100,000 barrels per day, the BP wellhead will gush over 250,000,000 gallons in the next TWO months, until BP will finish the drilling of the relief wells that (if lucky) "should" solve the problem within mid-august... personally, I'm thinking to stop to update my article with further new ideas (that I have) to solve the oil spill issue and to "wash" the ocean and the shores (without toxic dispersants) since it's completely useless to talk (and suggest the right things) if no one (not BP nor the Press) listen you... :[
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    however, my past ideas are here: http://bit.ly/c8y9GX
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    June 23, 2010 at 8:55 am | Report abuse |
    • BreakingNewsBlog.us

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      solve more quickly the oil spill issue and INVEST the money saved in the new NASA space program!!!!!!!
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      the cargo-Dragon “should” carry (from 2014) only 2.5 tons of payload to the ISS, that is the SAME payload of a ‘60s Progress but a (about) FIVE TIMES the price-per-ton of the Progress or the Space Shuttle
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      while, the crew-Dragon “should” carry a small crew of three astronauts (SEVEN astronauts are unlikely to fly on a capsule the size of a Soyuz!) to the ISS (from 2016) exactly like the ‘60s (ready available and VERY reliable) Soyuz but at TWICE the price per seat
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      in other words, SpaceX "should" do in 2014-2016 the SAME things ALREADY done by the Soviet Union OVER 50 YEARS BEFORE (but at prices HIGHER than today’s russian vehicles)
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      so, where is the commercial-space “revolution" ?????????
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      and, don’t forget, that SpaceX and Orbital Sciences (with its smaller cargo-vehicle) are THE ONLY TWO REAL COMMERCIAL-SPACE COMPANIES onthe market today!!!!!
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      so, could NASA rely ONLY on them for the next TEN+ years ???????????????
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      June 23, 2010 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
    • BreakingNewsBlog.us

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      anyhow, I've in mind to write soon three articles about the "commercial space" on my ghostNASA.com blog
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      one year ago, I've published an article with a (possible) speech about Mars, that, all the people of the world that want the space exploration, waited to hear from Obama
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      ghostnasa.com/posts/047gotomars.html
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      about the rockets for the new missons, now, NASA suggests/wants to develop a new shuttle-derived HLV rocket:
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      nasawatch.com/archives/2010/06/shuttle-derived.html
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      that is EXACTLY the SAME concept of the shuttle-derived FAST-SLV that I've proposed over FOUR YEARS AGO (and in ALL these 4 years!) on my website:
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      bit.ly/9cbsFB
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      and proposed also on several hundreds threads, posts and comments on space and science forums and blogs, worldwide!!!
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      please note, that, this "new" NASA proposal (in its inline version) isn't "similar" to my FAST-SLV concept but E-X-A-C-T-L-Y THE SAME of MY four-years-old idea!!!
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      FOUR YEARS LOST AND $9 BILLION BURNED FOR NOTHING... :[
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      however, both (my) FAST-SLV and the ("new") NASA HLV are (now) OUTDATED and need some fresh redesign
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      June 23, 2010 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
    • qwerasdf

      @BreakingNews

      Zero science (CHECK)
      Zero math (CHECK)
      Zero calculations (CHECK)
      Zero facts (CHECK)
      Zero research (CHECK)
      5 year old imagination with a crayon (CHECK)
      No education (CHECK)
      Poor English (CHECK)
      Can't spell Oxygen (CHECK)
      Crappy idea that BP, US Gov, any government, any company won't take (CHECK)
      Ugly website (CHECK)
      Spam (CHECK)
      Someone who doesn't know how to skip lines and puts idiotic periods (CHECK)

      you are a complete joke. Get an education first.

      June 24, 2010 at 4:17 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jim

    Is everyone stupid? This daily reporting of how much oil has been captured is a red herring. There is no relevance to it. All that is relevant is how much oil escapes each day into the gulf. This should be reported every day. Whether you capture zero barrels of oil, or 50,000: if zero escaped to the gulf, the situation is under control, and vise versa. The other hundreds (thousands) of oil rigs in the gulf are "capturing" millions of barrels of oil a day. So what? The issue is the oil leaking into our ocean.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  3. Peter Gavrity

    Why has the LMRP been removed? Looks like it's going full bore now.

    June 23, 2010 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
    • BreakingNewsBlog.us

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      IT'S TRUE !!!! THE OLD, WRONG, WELLHEAD "CAP" HAS BEEN REMOVED !!!! AN NOW THE OIL FLOWS IN THE OCEAN AT 4,000 BARRELS PER HOUR !!!!
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      deepwaterbp.com/
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      June 23, 2010 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Peter T

    When will the oil enter the gulf stream to Georgia and the Carolinas?

    June 23, 2010 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
  5. Will C

    CNN's coverage of the oil spill is atrocious. The LMRP is gone and CNN is saying nothing? Have they been taking money from BP lately?

    June 23, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  6. ping2low

    is this thang still leakin earl? just walking the cubical floors, all i see iz people watch the soccer games, so i figured it must be fixed now...

    June 23, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Steve M

    One sentence about the cap being removed? That's all CNN gives us! We ar back to the starting point..Like breaking a cap off an aerosol can. We are screwed!!!
    I think it is time for a classic govermental distraction. What shall it be? Iran? Korea? Place your bets!

    June 23, 2010 at 6:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Steve M

    Has anyone else noticed that sections of this article have been re-written in the last three hours?

    June 23, 2010 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Joe G.

    Why doesn't someone ask why the riser was cutoff the BOP. It didn't slow down the flow, the oil in the gulf is more than it was with the kinked riser, even if you subtract was is being captured by the tanker. The riser was cut so sale able oil could be retrieved. The top kill was suspended before it had a chance to work.

    Joe

    June 24, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Connie

    Looks like to me there is a blackout on the news about the oil spill. They really don't what us to know what is going on! There is a greater, unseen, and potentially more deadly killer in the crude, it is the oil in the air over the gulf that carries the greatest health risks for humans, " What you cannot see is more dangerous to humans that what you can see" Oil vapors in the air we breathe a health risk that can be deadly. Air sample data tracks toxic air over the gulf coast! I don"t hear them talking about that? And with the emerging evidence of methane bubble rupturing the seabed and exploding into the gulf water, If the bubble escapes, every ship, drilling rig and structure within the region of the bubble will instantly sink, all workers, engineers, coast guard personnel and marine biologists measuring the oil plumes advance will instantly perish. It equals in its fury indonesian tsunami that killed more than 600.000 people! They are in great danger!

    June 24, 2010 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. TimmyGuns

    I can't believe that anyone would want to attempt drilling at great depths considering the financial/environmental cost that could come with it. Even BP's new face is saying they shouldn't be taking risks until the evidence is clear. Perhaps all wells should have double BOP's...?!? Perhaps there should be Oil capture systems set in place at a radius of 2 miles oround drilling sites...?!?! Perhaps the Canadian Oil Sands are a cleaner alternative?!?!? Perhaps we should try to use less oil?!?!?! Perhaps we should look at the bigger problem and realize that we (as humans) are becoming a cancerous tumor to our beautifull earth..... Are we overpopulating the earth? A simplistic life is a thing of the past... GOD help us...or should I say- "Higher power, please help us."

    June 27, 2010 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
  12. TimmyGuns

    Could they somehow drive a pile into this well head... with a Railgun? Could be the stupidest idea, or might be brilliant... I really wish it could be stopped. Then we can stop and assess what just happened in great detail.

    June 27, 2010 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  13. eye95

    BP's actions pre-dating the disaster were criminal. Their actions subsequently have demonstrated true moral bankruptcy among their leadership. If you want to read an article that skewers BP and Tony Hayward and their willingness to partner with evil, check this one out; it is wicked funny and fair.

    http://www.dailygoat.com/2010/06/republican-rebukes-oil-executivein-news-hell-issues-frost-advisory/

    June 27, 2010 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |