May 13th, 2010
12:01 PM ET

Making a mountain to stop the oil

See this island? It wasn't here yesterday.

The Louisiana National Guard poured in tons of sand and rock to fill a 700 foot gap in a barrier island to stop the oil from reaching the estuaries.

The gap was the result of hurricane damage in Elmer's Island, just across the bridge from Grand Isle.

Filled in, the island will now be a part of the last line of defense in Louisiana's scramble to protect it's ecologically sensitive coast. The area is also an important breeding ground for shrimp.

"It's ecologically and economically very important to the local community," Lt. Kyle Galloway told CNN.

soundoff (338 Responses)
  1. gaetano marano

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    they can send ALL the oxygen needed at 5000 ft. under sea! lots of oxygen! and at a MINIMAL FRACTION of the costs to (only TRY to) clean the entire Gulf sea from spilled oil !!!
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    May 13, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  2. mike

    And.. everyone "crys" there is too much Government Regulation.....
    When in Reality... we need more..

    May 13, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  3. lilgreenmartian

    No no.. that wont work with the island deal, what will work is if they just scoop up the whole area and airlift it to kennedy space center than they can tie some ropes around it and shoot it off into space. Boom problem solved.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. steve

    Chris – somehow I find it unlikely Bush or Palin was involved in this. This is not a political issue. It's an economic and ecologic issue. To bring any politician's name into it (Be them D or R) is just diverting attention from the actual subject matter. Construction of and installation of that rig pre-date Bush and certainly pre-date Palin. Overall, it was a dumb comment.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  5. A Chem E

    Just two words "Thermite reaction" google it up...

    May 13, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Max

    There is plenty of oxygen... Only it's bonded with hydrogen.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Archie Henson

    I'm very afraid that the ecology has already been damaged beyond our imagination.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Chris

    You need to go back to school, gaetano marano. Air is lighter than water, thus it would rise to the surface fairly quickly.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  9. steve

    LOL
    Google "Thermite Reaction" and you'll get 1,000s of pages of crackpot 9/11 conspiracy sites.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. RJ

    Drop an (underwater) bunker buster bomb to 'rearrange' that area and stop the flow.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. steve

    Here's a fruity idea – why don't we let the experts make the choices on how to deal with it?

    May 13, 2010 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  12. yolanda

    instead of trying ways to save the oil or the pipe, why can't they just use an explosion of some sort to collapse it or just fill it in with sand and such. each day more and more life (not just sea life) is threatened. Come on Obama step in and do the right thing, make BP step up to the plate.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
  13. mark

    Simply using explosives to try to close the well is not an option. A deep sea explosion could shift underlying rock and rip the well wide open. 5,000 barrels a day would be nothing compared to what could be unleashed.

    Drilling a second well deep below the surface to inject concrete to seal it is the only way to stop the oil pocket from continuing to dump crude into the ocean. Mitigating the escaped flow is necessary, but not easy and won't get it all. A cap that can be lowered onto the pipe in an open state, and then closed once on the floor, is a better option than the solid cap, but that could take months to fabricate and build the mechanics.

    There are no easy answers. This is a true disaster, regardless of who or what is to blame for it.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
  14. AC

    Hmmm...about a mile underwater. Guess what, options are quite limited at that depth.

    May 13, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  15. gaetano marano

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    the problem is that you (simply) have NO ALTERNATIVE to this proposal, since...
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    1. you can't use MILLIONS of gallons of chemical materials for months under sea and on its surface
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    2. you can't cool with liquid nitrogen the pipe and oil EVERY DAY for months (assuming it works)
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    3. you can't blast many tons of explosives and several times to try to stop the oil leak
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    May 13, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
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