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Dispersants add to Gulf spill’s toxic threats
Susan Buchanan — June 1, 2010
The EPA on May 10 authorized BP to use two dispersants-COREXIT 9500 and COREXIT EC9527A, distributed by the Tennessee and Texas units of Nalco Co. in Illinois. BP had already applied those products at the spill site for nearly two weeks. As concerns about COREXIT grew, however, the EPA asked BP on May 19 to find a less-toxic dispersant within 24 hours, and to start using its replacement in 72 hours. BP answered that it wanted to stick with COREXIT.
Frustrated EPA and Coast Guard officials said the company’s response was inadequate, and told BP to start reducing its use of surface dispersants. But in a decision questioned by some scientists, officials said BP’s subsea or underwater dispersant use, authorized in mid-May, could continue.
Last week, the EPA and the Coast Guard said that they would start calling the shots about BP’s dispersant use and that COREXIT applications could be scaled back by as much as 50% to 80%.
COREXIT should be scaled back to 0% —
Especially since BETTER options are available NOW.
In Addition to rushing through Approval on BP Dispersants of choice, AFTER they were used for 2 weeks by BP — the EPA has ALSO APPROVED other Dispersants, PRIOR to the current crisis.
Those “Other” Dispersants which were rated as Twice as Effective, and Half as Toxic, as the Corexit choices, that BP still insists on using. Disperants, which BP is BANNED from using in the U.K. — its home country.
Who is the EPA trying to Protect here, America’s Environments, or a Foreign Corporation’s incompetence?
BP using most toxic, moderately effective dispersant
Reported by: Jennifer Van Vrancken, Reporter; Tammie Mills, Photographer
Last Update: 5/21/2010
Given the unprecedented volume, the EPA is now instructing BP to pick a different dispersant. The EPA lists 18 dispersants as approved for use. The one BP has used on the Gulf oil spill is called COREXIT 9500. According to EPA summaries the numbers show, in rating effectiveness on dispersing South Louisiana Crude oil COREXIT rates as 55% effective.
Two other products DISPERSIT and SEACARE EPA rate 100% effective at dispersing South Louisiana Crude.
In terms of toxicity, keep in mind the smaller the number the more concentrated it is.
Oil is considered toxic at 11 part per million according to http://www.protecttheocean.com…
but it takes only 2.61 ppm of COREXIT to be considered at toxic levels,
while it takes a greater amount, 7.90 ppm of DISPERSIT and the exact same amount of SEACARE EPA before either of those products are considered toxic.
To see the full EPA dispersant toxicity and effectiveness summary go to http://www.epa.gov/oem/content…
Marianne Cufone, fish program director at Food & Water Watch in Washington, DC, said “COREXIT in studies was shown to be twice as harmful to shrimp as an alternate dispersant called Dispersit,” produced by Polychemical Corp. in New York. That’s problematic for the huge Gulf shrimp industry, she noted. Meanwhile, according to test results compiled by the EPA, seven alternative dispersants are less toxic to shrimp than COREXIT and at least 14 alternatives are less toxic to fish.
Cufone noted that Dispersit is about twice as effective in breaking oil down as COREXIT and is also far less toxic.
Dispersit is Twice as Effective and far less Toxic, than Corexit —
SO WHY in the world won’t BP make the switch?
Maybe the EPA didn’t ask nicely enough?
Maybe the EPA hasn’t done enough valid Toxicity Testing — well think again.
For the products on the National Contingency Plan (NCP) Product Schedule, EPA provides a summary of effectiveness and toxicity for each of the product categories:
Product (1:10 Product-to-No. 2 Fuel Oil ratio)
Toxicity (LC50 values in ppm) Menidia (96-hr)
Toxicity (LC50 values in ppm) Mysidopsis (48-hr)
Effectiveness (%) South Louisiana Crude Oil
COREXIT® EC9500A 2.61 3.40 54.70%
COREXIT® EC9527A 4.49 6.60 63.40%
DISPERSIT SPC 1000™ 7.90 8.20 100.00%
SEACARE E.P.A. 7.90 8.20 100.00%
And about those LC50 numbers (columns 1 and 2):
“In terms of toxicity, keep in mind the smaller the number the more concentrated it is.”
ie the More Toxic, the more Potent, the Poison is.
For a quick discussion of what LC50 [Lethal Concentration] means:
For a more detailed analysis of LC50 and Toxicity Tests:
Corexit Toxicity Tests not so hot, When Mixed with Oil
by jamess — Sun May 30, 2010
In a Nutshell:
The LC50 Number indicates Relative Toxicity: 2.0 ppm has greater Toxicity than 20.0 ppm — 2 drops of something is more toxic than 20 drops of something else, if both cause the same “kill rate” [50%] in the Test Species.
EPA Test Species Number 1: Menidia beryllina:
And DISPERSIT SPC 1000™ has 100% Effectiveness on South Louisiana Crude Oil.
Whereas, COREXIT® EC9500A is only 54.7% Effective!
So DISPERSIT is a No-Brainer Solution — What’s the Hold-up?
Maybe it’s just not available, like BP claimed — Think again!
Less Toxic Dispersants Lose Out in BP Oil Spill Cleanup
By PAUL QUINLAN of Greenwire, NYTimes — May 13, 2010
Among Corexit’s competitors, a product called Dispersit far outpaced Corexit 9500, EPA test results show, rating nearly twice as effective and between half and a third as toxic, based on two tests performed on fish and shrimp.
Bruce Gebhardt, president of the company that manufactures Dispersit, U.S. Polychemical Corp., said BP asked for samples of his company’s product two weeks ago. Later, he said, BP officials told him that EPA had wanted to ensure they had “crossed all their T’s and dotted all their I’s” before moving forward.
Gebhardt says he could make 60,000 gallons a day of Dispersit to meet the needs of spill-containment efforts. Dispersit was formulated to outperform Corexit and got EPA approval 10 years ago, he said, but the dispersant has failed to grab market share from its larger rival.
So the maker of Dispersit, the much better Disperant according to EPA own Tests, HAS THE CAPACITY TO MAKE THE NECESSARY QUANTITIES AVAILABLE —
They just don’t have the Business yet from BP, or from the Coast Guard, or from the EPA.
Why NOT? … Again I ask what’s the Hold up?
Why NOT check out the Competition, especially when they got the obviously superior product?
EPA girds for a fight with BP over dispersants in Gulf oil spill
By Mark Guarino, CSMonitor Staff writer — May 25, 2010
The manufacturer of Dispersit says it can readily increase production to meet the unprecedented demand. Moreover, Dispersit is a patented product so its chemical makeup is public record, which would clear up any questions regarding its effect on marine life, says Bruce Gebhardt, president of US Polychemical Corp. in Chestnut Ridge, N.Y. “Everyone has access to our information,” he adds.
Mr. Gebhardt says BP contacted him last Thursday to inquire about the product. Gebhardt says he told BP he could get supplies to the Gulf in five to seven days, but an order was never placed.
US Polychemical Corp has gotten NO Orders from BP yet [as of May 25th] — even after the EPA demanded BP find a better, environmentally safer product.
Why NOT? … SO again I ask what’s the Hold up?
Is the EPA biding its time, crossing its fingers, throwing a Hail Mary Pass, betting it all [the Gulf Eco-System] on each new Last Ditch effort that BP trots out there?
The Gulf of Mexico is dying!
And the BP Media Show is little better than Keystone Cops, in this slow motion Tragedy!
Stop Stalling — and Start Doing!
Make BP place Orders for 100% Effective DISPERSIT SPC 1000™ now!
While there’s still some living things left to “Protect” in the Gulf.
EPA Test Species Number 2: Americamysis bahia:
And while your at it EPA, you need to make BP Quit injecting Dispersants, into Deep Water Oil Plumes —
the Same Conditions, that the EPA has NOT yet Tested for Eco-Impact —
those Same Underwater Plumes, that the BP CEO Tony Hayward claims “Do not even exist“!
Stop compounding the Damage, and Start Doing your Jobs —
Start Protecting the Environment — Quit kissing BP’s behind.
They’ll fix the leak, whenever they figure out how —
irregardless, of “How Nicely you ask them to do something” in the meanwhile.
EPA — DO your Jobs!
Quit being a Doormat for Big Oil!