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. barf baby bingo

    Buster Crabbe here for Icy Hot...

    May 13, 2010 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. AJ

    Lets sink an old aircraft carrier ontop of it.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  3. wb

    no sure i get it.... use the rovers to clear the pipe diam. then send a threader to create threads on outside of pipe then add a cap to the new threads use hyd's to close the cap. done, leaked stopped, what so hard about that?

    May 13, 2010 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Robert

    I don't know the means that they normally use to suck the oil up from the bottom of the ocean to the surface.....but, it has to involve some kind of piping.

    As a temporary fix to reduce the level of severity.....can a smaller diameter pipe be placed into the hole? Not as a plug, but to give the oil that is under pressure a path that is directed to the surface where it can be collected? Every gallon they can collect is a gallon not washing up on shore somewhere.

    Or, possibly a larger diameter pipe that is just above the hole, so that the oil again goes into the pipe and rises to the surface?

    Oil is lighter than water. Any oil that gets into the pipe would rise to the surface where it can be collected. And with the pressure that oil is spewing out, if you could get any of it pointed at a pipe, you could divert a good amount of oil. And yes, I know that there would be other engineering issues.....such as the force of the oil pushing against the pipe, causing it to move to the side......

    Similar to the box idea that they have already tried, but straight into a pipe leading to the surface instead of a box.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  5. David

    As BP has shown themselves to be inept it is time for Obama to have the Military take over the task of sealing the leak, of course with BP paying that bill. For a solution, the "tophat" may have worked were it not for the formation of ice crystals that blocked the opening and made it bouyant, perhaps a very simple submarine that regulated the pressure and temperate until it was in position over the leak could be looked at.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Anna


    May 13, 2010 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ed

    Sounds to me like all of these rigs need to have a predrilled (or mostly pre drilled) line in order to respond to this type of event much, much quicker.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bob

    hasoos, you are an idiot. So how exaclty are they going to get the concrete to set at that pressure? They were setting a CEMENT plug in the wellbore right before the explosion. If they had problems when the well was static, what makes you think that a high pressure flowing well will cooperate. The only way to fully stop the well is to have a relief well tap into the existing well downhole.

    beanne, we know all about the Santa Barbra spill. And equipment and drilling processes have become much better since the 50s. But thanks to drilling off the coast the pressure has been relieved a bit and oil has been removed from the ground and those waters are actually less oily. Just like Galvestion Bay in Texas, Santa Barbara is naturally oily because of oil seeps from the sea floor.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  9. idiot

    why don't we get everyone genuinely interested to pray to the guy upstairs to just part the sea, then we can get John Wayne's ghost (the Hell-fighter0 to just drive there in a humvee and blow up the well.
    Problem solved

    May 13, 2010 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  10. tcaros

    This is why NOT to "drill baby drill."

    The dumb repubs and even there dumb tea baggers are so stupid to think that oil companies will behave properly.

    They're greed bstards.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
  11. JayIsMockingGaetanoMarano

    @gaetano marano: Send the oxygen from the surface to burn the unprocessed oil, dirt, steam, and rock mixture being ejected from the well at high pressure? And I thought their current engineering plans were complicated....o.O

    May 13, 2010 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Stephen

    Will people please stop telling them to blow up the well? The well is not the problem, its a valve stuck open. Blowing up the well will not stop the oil from spewing out, if it would then they would have done it already.

    Also, @Nancy, the your common sence fix is what the big white box was supposed to do and it didn't work.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Lynnwood

    Despairwear dot com--BP bringing oil to America's shores.....

    May 13, 2010 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Bryan

    BP and it's engineers are only concerned about protecting their precious oil instead of protecting the environment.Every so called solution they put in place is designed to keep pumping oil instead of stopping the leak. They should never be allowed to drill in our waters again.

    May 13, 2010 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
  15. scott scheffer

    Why not wedge George W Bush, Sara Palin and all oil executives into the opening and pour concrete on top of them! I think that would work!

    May 13, 2010 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
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