June 9th, 2010
07:50 AM ET

Wednesday's intriguing people

Kevin Costner

The star of such movies as "Field of Dreams" and "Waterworld" is scheduled to testify Thursday at a House Committee on Science and Technology hearing on solutions to the Gulf oil disaster.

The Hill reports that Costner has invested some $26 million into his Ocean Therapy Solutions device, which uses centrifugal force to separate oil from water. According to The Hill, last month BP approved the machine for testing.

The actor and activist visited New Orleans, Louisiana, in May. WDSU-TV reports that he demonstrated the oil extraction device, which Ocean Therapy officials say will clean up the water to 97 percent.

"I just am really happy that this has come to the light of day," Costner said. "I'm very sad about why it is, but this is why it was developed, and like anything that we all face as a group, we face it together."

The Hill: Kevin Costner to testify on oil spill clean-up effort

CNN video: Kevin Costner demos oil extracting device

WDSU: Kevin Costner helps fight oil spill

Dr. Steve Ramee and Dr. Kamran Khoobehi

Stopping the oil leak in the Gulf may require the U.S. to draw upon unexpected ingenuity and experience.

"It looks like the ocean floor is bleeding, and we know how to stop bleeding," said Ramee, cardiology chief at Ochsner Medical Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

WWL-TV reports that Ramee and Khoobehi, a surgeon at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, believe the concept used to stop bleeding - going against the blood pressure in an artery - can be used to stop the gushing oil.

Khoobehi describes his device as a circular wedge that begins small and gets larger, supported by a heavy concrete plug. As the pressure builds, the weight of the concrete block would counteract the pressure of the leak. Both doctors told the TV station that they have tried to get their concepts to government officials, oil support companies, and BP itself, but have not heard back from anyone.

WWLTV: Surgeons say they have a plan to patch oil leak

CNN: Complete coverage of Gulf Coast oil disaster

Alvin Greene

An unemployed, 32-year-old African-American Army veteran won the Democratic Senate primary in South Carolina and will now run against Republican Sen. Jim DeMint.

Mother Jones magazine reports that Greene says he paid the $10,400 filing fee and other campaign expenses from his own pocket. He ran without signs or a website. He still lives in his family home and has had no job for the past nine months.

According to the magazine, Greene's unexpected campaign raised speculation by local media that he might have been a Republican plant. He denies that.

"No, no - no one approached me. This is my decision," he said.

Greene says the idea to run came to him in 2008 when he was serving in Korea.

"I just saw the country was in bad shape two years ago ... the country was declining," he says. "I wanted to make sure we continue to go up on the right track."

Mother Jones: Who is Alvin Greene?

CNN: Battle lines drawn in Tuesday's primaries

Mandi Schwartz

The Yale University women's hockey team senior center is suffering from leukemia and has approximately 30 days remaining to find a bone marrow donor. Schwartz was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in December 2008.

Yalebulldogs.com reports that earlier this year, after five rounds of treatment and being declared in remission, Schwartz returned to Yale for the spring semester. In April she learned her cancer had returned and she would need to undergo more chemotherapy.

Now that Schwartz is in need of a transplant, the Yale athletic department is helping her doctor to spearhead a worldwide effort to find her a donor.

Social media have played a role in the drive to find a donor. The Facebook group "Become Mandi's Hero" enlisted 1000 fans in a 24-hour period.

On Monday, Schwartz received a call from former Olympic skater Dan Jansen - whose sister had leukemia - to offer his support.

Yale Bulldogs: Mandi Schwartz and 'Become Mandi's hero'

Jack Mallard and Mary Welcome

One was a veteran prosecutor nicknamed "Blood," the other was a young defense attorney in her first murder trial.

When defense lawyer Mary Welcome told Wayne Williams, the suspect in the Atlanta child murders, that he had a right to be indignant on the witness stand, Williams blew up at prosecutor Jack Mallard the next morning and, among other things, barked, "You must be a fool."

Mallard used Williams' own words against him to tell the jury he was "a Jekyll and Hyde."

Thirty years later, Williams says, "I was my own worst enemy."

One state Supreme Court justice would later call the defense incompetent and ineffective. Mary Welcome said the defense had neither the time nor the money to defend the case properly.

Williams was convicted and is serving two life sentences. Mallard, Welcome Williams appear in Soledad O'Brien's CNN documentary this week investigating "The Atlanta Child Murders."

CNN: The Atlanta Child Murders

A prosecutor called 'Blood'

soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. BillM

    The idea of a centrifuge is nothing new. Naval vessels have been using them in engine rooms for decades to purify the oil used to lubricate the turbines. In that case they are removing the water and debris to purify the oil.

    I also recently read that Mr. Costner's device failed in its real world tests on the actual crude oil. The crude is too thick and the device clogged up after only a very short time.

    June 9, 2010 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  2. gums32

    Kevin the smokers have returned(BP) dive down 5000ft and cap that well yourself. I saw your swimming abilities in (Waterworld)

    June 9, 2010 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
  3. JEV1A

    "Now lets see here... between James Cameron and now Kevin Costner, is it Hollywood that will save the Gulf? My god people... "Waterworld? Meanwhile the shrimpers and the folks in the Bayou and soon to come The Panhandle are dying a slow death! Quit looking for the quick fix! What NEXT!

    June 9, 2010 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
    • gums32

      Don't under estimate the power of our hollywood actors and directors. I give them more of a chance than our government.

      June 9, 2010 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
    • IRAhitman

      Why do people need to be so stupid about these things? It's not about the movies he's been in. Have any of you invested $26 million to help the environment? Does one have to dress like Ranger Rick and refuse to shave and use deoderant to be an acceptable face for an environmental hero? Next issue: he said invested not donated. Right. It's his money and he's not stupid. I don't care if it Kevin Costner, Ray Romano, or Chubby Checker. He's doing more than anyone on this blog, get off his A$$.

      June 9, 2010 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  4. Cher

    I don't care who it is that comes up with something to help with this disaster....Try them all...DO SOMETHING!! I have seen all types of ideas in the last month or so but all they do is talk. BP and the government do NOTHING but put out boons which aren't even working.

    June 9, 2010 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  5. Pink

    Go for it Kevin! So far, you are the only person in the world that is stepping up with an idea, and of course, all the best intentions. THANKS!!!!

    June 9, 2010 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  6. manny

    why do they mention "Field of dreams" as the first on the list of his films? Are the editors saying the idea is just a dream? the writers at CNN have no faith in Costner.

    June 9, 2010 at 9:55 am | Report abuse |
  7. Roger

    Why should BP care how the oil is collected. Put a bounty on it and let the inventors have at it. Of course, they should have to submit to some sort of certification that they won't do more harm than good.

    June 9, 2010 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  8. billyjack

    "Officials with Ocean Therapy Solutions have said one of their machines is capable of cleaning up to 210,000 gallons of water per day." Does anyone here know what 210,000 gallons is? It's jacks**t. A drop. This is a "solution"? NEXT...

    June 9, 2010 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
    • IRAhitman

      Yeah, because I'm sure they were just going to use one of them for the whole Gulf of Mexico. You're a moron.

      June 9, 2010 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Sheri Miracle

    Well what are you waiting for people? Time is precious, so get on it!
    THANK YOU KEVIN COSTNER.

    June 9, 2010 at 10:05 am | Report abuse |
  10. chrisaz

    This is a time for innovation and ingenuity!!! Why hasen't it been used by the Administration.... They are totaly incompetent and out of touch with America. They are to busy having parties at the White House.

    June 9, 2010 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
  11. Tami

    Actually, between Kevin's idea & the idea that the cardiologists offered are MUCH better than anyone else has offered. Sounds like one or both ideas could do the trick. So, WHHHHHYYYYY aren't they being treated more seriously and being implemented? The amount of methane in the Gulf is so horrific that I can't even imagine going back to a Gulf-area beach for a long, long time.

    June 9, 2010 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
  12. thuk

    My company sells oil-from water centrifuges, and we have tested the Costner design. Bottom line – it doesn't work, at least not well enough to be worth the effort. Sounds like he is trying to take advantage of the situation to sell a sub-par product to a desparate public, government, and/or company willing to try (and pay for) anything. The fact is there are many centrifuge produts out there that can seperate oil from water, the problem is none can handle the millions of gallons per day that would need to be processed to make a dent in this spill. Not to mention you would destroy any microscopic sea life processed through a centrifuge. Good luck making a buck Kevin.

    June 9, 2010 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  13. Monte

    I applaud your efforts Mr. Costner. Not all "Save the Planet" groups or individuals have gotten as far as you have to find solutions to cleaning up what BP did. Not sure how you intend on deploying it, but I'm sure folks on your team have a good idea. Money well spent Kevin.

    June 9, 2010 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  14. wtmolson

    Why is this taking so long to get out in the public? I first read about this a couple weeks ago?!! Just get these out there.

    June 9, 2010 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
    • thuk

      Cause it doesn't work. CNN is making this a headline today 'cause its a slow news day.

      June 9, 2010 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
  15. Billy

    Wow, Go Kevin!

    June 9, 2010 at 10:30 am | Report abuse |
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