May 27th, 2010
09:09 PM ET

Gulf oil spill by the numbers

Here's a look at the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico that began after an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig on April 20:


5,000: Barrels of oil spilling into the Gulf every day, according to BP (BP)

70,000: Barrels of oil spilling into the Gulf every day, according to some scientists (Steve Wereley, associate professor Purdue University)

$1.6 billion: Conservative estimate of economic damage caused by oil spill (Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies)

$760 million: BP's outlay as of May 24, including the cost of the spill response, containment, relief well drilling, grants to the Gulf states, claims paid and federal costs.

$5.6 billion: BP's 1st quarter 2010 profit, up 135 percent over 1st quarter 2009.

54,096: Square miles of Gulf of Mexico waters (22 percent of total) closed for fishing (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)

126: People aboard oil rig Deepwater Horizon at the time of the April 20 explosion (Deepwater Horizon)

11: People who died in the blast (Deepwater Horizon)


22,000: Personnel working to protect shoreline and wildlife (Department of the Interior)

1,200: Skimmers, tugs, barges and recovery vessels being used in cleanup (Interior)

3.1 million: Feet of boom deployed to contain the spill (Interior)

840,000: Gallons of chemical dispersants used (Interior)

11.1 million: Gallons of oily water recovered (Interior)


(From a Texas A&M University study)

1: Ranking of the oil industry in the Gulf of Mexico economy

$124 billion: Money generated by oil in the Gulf of Mexico every year

53: Percentage of oil revenues in Gulf economies


(From the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

437: dead birds

212: Sea Turtles dead

52: Number of species facing threat

32: National wildlife refuges at risk

24: Dolphins dead


257,000: Barrels of oil spilled (Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council)

$2.1 billion: Cost of cleanup efforts (Encyclopedia of Earth)

11,000: Square miles of ocean covered by oil (Encyclopedia of Earth)

$7 billion: Amount Exxon spent on recovery efforts (Encyclopedia of Earth)

8 percent: Amount of oil recovered from Valdez spill (Encyclopedia of Earth)

- Compiled by CNN's Moni Basu and Lauren Russell.

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Filed under: BP • Gulf Coast Oil Spill
soundoff (23 Responses)
  1. Mick

    It looks obvious there is 4 or 5 times MORE oil leaking now than before the pipe was cut. The cap is not working. Look at all the wording BP uses eg "MAYBE oil is collected UPTO xx gallons per day".....there are lots of variables in their lingo MAYBE & UPTO mean nothing definate....does nobody understand that???......why is Campbell or Cooper not challenging BP statements??

    There does not seem to be that much pressure at the leak....tell us what is the pressure in psi or kPa.....come on BP tell us simple facts. All it needs is a heavy metal plate with rubber liner placed on top of pipe.....there is lots pressure at 1,000 metre below sea-level anyways so I think oil leak can easly be stopped.....nobody is doing obvious fix.

    June 8, 2010 at 4:57 am | Report abuse |
  2. Michael Ostrowski

    From a degreed mechanical engineer with five patents in fluid mechanics-BP, media and Government reports on numbers and the effectiveness of the current top hat and suction to the surface are assuming that the flow rate from the well is independent from the presence of the top hat and suction to the surface vessel. The media and Government should ask that question - could it be that the well is actually flowing more from the geological formation itself because of the suction ( i.e . reduced "static hydrobaric backpressure" at that ocean depth ). ???

    June 10, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
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