A Press Conference w/ EPA Admin Lisa Jackson & USCG Rr Adm Mary Landry on Monday 5/24/10 3:30 pm Central DT to discuss dispersants. There’s a transcript of the live blog.
Last week EPA ordered BP to stop using Corexit and look for something less toxic. BP is still using Corexit. From the following transcript, it appears that BP will continue to be using Corexit and EPA “will be conducting their own tests to find the least toxic dispersants.”
Then the conference call goes over to Rr Admiral Landry at 3:58 pm. “In a crisis mode still, never dealt with a well releasing oil 5000 feet below the water.”
But catch the 2nd comment at 3:59 pm
3:59 pm Rr Admiral Landry- Well Could Fail Any Given Day
then question was asked, by Nick, “what, exactly, does “fail” mean in this context ?
4:00pm I need to get clarification, sorry
4:00pm question from PetroleumMag “are my questions being received ?”
4:01 pm Not answering questions at this time
4:01 pm Landry working towards less use of dispersants
4:02 pm Applying pressure on BP, BP understands Jackson is not satisfied with their response
looking worldwide at various products
4:02 pm Top Kill procedure: important to allow for subsea injections because it is so critical
4:02 pm Using less surface dispersants
4:07 pm Jackson: BP presented a lot of problems with with alternatives on list of dispersants
Everything we know about response to date is to plan for the worst
4:12 pm Jackson: Can stop subsea dispersant at any time if deemed unsafe.
4:13 Jackson : We will be relying on the science to determine whether Corexit or other dispersant is better or worse. Independent dispersant assessments over the next few days by EPA
4:15 pm Landry : Need to continue subsea use of dispersants
4:20 pm Jackson: Shoreline affect, looking for dispersant in shoreline goop, if we find we are making things worse, we will order a full stop on the use of dispersants
4:21 pm Landry: Would have been much more oil on shore had dispersants not been used . Prepared to analyze and share w/ everyone what the long term impacts that the spill has had
4:25 pm Ok we are done. Thanks for joining us today
Currently there seems to be no live, new video of the underwater well leak playing since this past evening. (monday night, tuesday am 4am). It’s all “offline.” Other people have reported the “live” video from the past few days, sometimes contained repeating loops.
I have not seen recent live video of the Blow Out Preventer (BOP) , but I’m not glued to it. There might have been a short time it was on the screen late monday afternoon/evening, or at least a ROV seemed to be hovering over it. Reports from other blogs, including the Oil Drum, confirm that no one has seen live video in many days of the BOP, only the other end, the drill pipe. I can say that last Sunday night 5/23 there was “something” going on with the end of the leaking riser and drill pipe with the insertion oil collection “sippy tube” in it, with a lot of bursts of oil and gas and frozen methane snow flying around, lots of shaking of the sippy tube, and then the ROV camera focused on it very close up at the end, for a long time after the debris settled. I was not the only one taking screen shots, the monkeyfister.blogspot.com was also doing the same thing. That blog claims that it looks like another hole has come up thru the seafloor and is venting gas. Since part of the drill pipe is twisted and buried in the sea floor and may not be intact, this might be a possible source of that.
Per the press conferences and official news releases from the Joint Unified Command, the latest scheduled attempt to “Top Kill” the well with pumping in drilling mud into the BOP is supposed to happen Wednesday, but they need to test it first 12 hours in advance.
From the comments at the Oil Drum blog I have noticed the following:
This isn’t an “oil well” blowout, it can be thought of as more of a “gas well” blowout, and thus shutting the damned thing off is going to be a lot dicier.
From “roger_rethinker” http://www.theoildrum.com/node…
the gas: oil ration in this well is reported to be about 3000, which means about 150 lb. of gas per 285 lbs of oil, or 34% gas by weight. This well is between a typical gas well and a typical oil well. The high amount of gas at the high pressure of the reservoir means that the properties of the reservoir must be understood as a supercritical solution which I here term petrogas. It is possible that there is no fluid phase boundary within the reservoir, but the expert I spoke to, Dr Robert M Enick, thinks that unlikely.
(ARC translation: Oh, Sh*t. It’s so high pressure down in that formation that the stuff is not a small pocket of gas sitting on top of a big pocket of liquid, so you can bleed a bunch of the gas off and drop the pressure easily. It might be all gas with oil dissolved in it until it is at a certain height above the wellhead. )
the pressure in the reservoir (under the sea floor, where the gas/oil is in formation) is about 12,000 pounds per square inch but “only” 180 degrees F. The supercritical nature of at least part of the petrogas persists all the way up the drill pipe to the seabed, 13,000 feet.
(ARC translation: so it’s not that hot, which means that with that amount of pressure, it’s really still going to want to come out very fast because it’s really packed in there. It’s staying a gas all the 2.5 miles up the pipe, and the expansion as it comes up, is making it want to go faster. Oh, joy. )
There is a lot of other stuff that translates into he think’s the oil is dissolved into the methane until it leaves the BOP, then the act of oil/gas mix touching the water creates a reaction, the temperature change warms the stuff up some more instead of cooling it, as it travels down the nearly mile long mess of the broken pipes until it finally comes out near the sippy tube and the broken end. The crystal methane hydrate forming out of the gas, heats up a water plume.
A comment from “Mason” on May 24th
I suspect the gas/oil/water mixture has breached the casing in multiple places and it’s eroding the sedimentary rock and widening the drill hole. I suspect that the cement gave way and, since no intact boundary separates the contents of the drill pipe from the contents in the space between the drill pipe and the casing and the contents of the space between the casing and the sedimentary wall, this is why there is so much sand and rock in the gas/oil/water mixture exploding out of the riser.
This puppy hasn’t shown any sign of weakening during the past 34 days. If anything the plumes appear to have increased, which suggests to me that the volume vomiting out of Hell, so to speak is increasing. I don’t think the pressure is increasing. If I’m right, the sand blaster is blowing more and ever larger holes in the drill and riser pipes before and after the BOP, plus widening the hole, and this is why more stuff is coming out.
I don’t see how the Top Down and/or Jam Shot, if successful, can do anything but divert the flow outside the casing increasing the pressure and erosion of sedimentary rock and substantially widening the hole. Since the first few hundred feet or so below the seafloor is mud, I suspect that the well hole is much wider at the top and the dramatic turbidity increase some people noticed yesterday was mud displacement at the well head.
Again assuming my scenario is correct and this is a water driven blowout, what are the chances that a relief well can shut this puppy down?
This was sort of interesting except that the oil dissolved in gas stuff is coming out so fast and hard that I doubt water is somehow getting into it. It’s not “water driven” other than the water is at a different, lighter pressure than the heavily pressurized gas/oil mixture and there fore the oil/gas is being drawn to up to it and then keeps expanding once it’s in it. The holes are likely getting bigger.
Still an Oh, Sh*t. They took a big soda pop bottle that the Goddess had filled up and shaken a long time ago, and put it in the microwave, buried it in the darkest bayou, and then took the cap off, stuck a straw in it with a cheap cork, punched some holes in the straw, messed with the screw top, and now they can’t put the top cap back on with Play Doh, without risking blowing the cap lid into the ceiling and spewing Coca Methane Cola all over the Gulf.
I think that they are very reluctant to admit that they think if they try to recap this soda bottle, by blowing a big slug of mud down it first, they’re afraid the whole BOP is going to go “pop” and blow off the sea floor if there is a backblow. Because leaving the BOP as is, partially obstructing the flow for a while, might be a better option than having a much larger hole.
Either that, or BP is just not ready yet. Or stalling. Obfuscating. Buying tickets to a country that doesn’t extradite. But turning off the live video feed is sending up plenty of red flag warnings when combined with r. Adm Landry’s statement about the well could fail at any time.
This is a runaway High Pressure Gas Well. That turns to oil, like magic, on its way to the surface.
Without being a fear monger, or a hysteric, or wishing for a bad outcome, I believe she might have been stating something that is understood, but not being publicly acknowledged by the Government yet, because it would be hard to explain why they can’t just “do something.”
The official news release for Monday was that the Secretary of the Interior, Salazar, and Homeland Security, Napolitano, with some other Senators Durbin, Whitehorse, Landrieu, Murkowski, and Bingaman did a “bipartisan” visit to the Gulf yesterday, and Lisa Jackson of EPA and Nancy Sutley of CEQ went back to the Gulf to look at the wetlands and do a press conference about the dispersant. The press release said Senator Vitter was to be there, but I did not see him in the photo I posted earlier.
http://www.deepwaterhorizonres… I looked at the short youtube of this, and didn’t hear anything particularly new.
I think they’re stuck.
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar flies over the Gulf of Mexico on Monday May 24th, observing the BP Oil Spill. Photo by US Coast Guard Lt Cm Rob Wyman.
On day 34 of the BP Oil Spill, the marshes and the wildlife started to die in the Mississippi River Delta South of New Orleans, Louisiana as the oil worked its way 12 miles in. Biomass, green, dead vegetation and oil, black, oil is also blue and silvery and orange. Photo by NASA.
And they can’t do anything with any certainty, but watch for the next two months and try to continue scooping the goo up. And burying the dead wildlife.