Deepwater Horizon oil spill

Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Deepwater Horizon oil spill
Deepwater Horizon oil spill - May 24, 2010 - with locator.jpg
The oil slick as seen from space by NASA's Terra satellite on May 24, 2010
Location Gulf of Mexico near Mississippi River Delta, United States
Coordinates 28°44′12.01″N 88°23′13.78″W / 28.7366694°N 88.3871611°W / 28.7366694; -88.3871611Coordinates: 28°44′12.01″N 88°23′13.78″W / 28.7366694°N 88.3871611°W / 28.7366694; -88.3871611[1]
Date Spill date: April 20 – July 15, 2010
Well officially sealed: September 19, 2010
Cause Wellhead blowout
Casualties 11 dead
Operator Transocean under contract for BP[2]
Spill characteristics
Volume up to 4.9 million barrels (210,000,000 US gallons; 780,000 cubic meters)[3]
Area 2,500 to 68,000 sq mi (6,500 to 180,000 km²)[4]

The Deepwater Horizon oil spill (also referred to as the BP oil spill, the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the BP oil disaster, or the Macondo blowout)[5][6][7] is an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico which flowed unabated for three months in 2010, and continues to leak fresh oil.[8] It is the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry.[9][10][11] The spill stemmed from a sea-floor oil gusher that resulted from the April 20, 2010, explosion of Deepwater Horizon, which drilled on the BP-operated Macondo Prospect. The explosion killed 11 men working on the platform and injured 17 others.[12] On July 15, 2010, the leak was stopped by capping the gushing wellhead,[13] after it had released about 4.9 million barrels (780,000 m3) of crude oil.[3] An estimated 53,000 barrels per day (8,400 m3/d) escaped from the well just before it was capped.[11] It is believed that the daily flow rate diminished over time, starting at about 62,000 barrels per day (9,900 m3/d) and decreasing as the reservoir of hydrocarbons feeding the gusher was gradually depleted.[11] On September 19, 2010, the relief well process was successfully completed, and the federal government declared the well "effectively dead".[14] In August 2011, oil and oil sheen covering several square miles of water were reported surfacing not far from BP’s Macondo well.[15] Scientific analysis confirmed the oil is a chemical match for Macondo 252.[16][17] The Coast Guard said the oil was too dispersed to recover.[18]

The spill caused extensive damage to marine and wildlife habitats and to the Gulf's fishing and tourism industries.[19][20] Skimmer ships, floating containment booms, anchored barriers, sand-filled barricades along shorelines, and dispersants were used in an attempt to protect hundreds of miles of beaches, wetlands, and estuaries from the spreading oil. Scientists also reported immense underwater plumes of dissolved oil not visible at the surface[21] as well as an 80-square-mile (210 km²) "kill zone" surrounding the blown well.[22] In late November 2010, 4,200 square miles (11,000 km²) of the Gulf were re-closed to shrimping after tar balls were found in shrimpers' nets.[23] The amount of Louisiana shoreline affected by oil grew from 287 miles (462 km) in July to 320 miles (510 km) in late November 2010.[24] In January 2011, an oil spill commissioner reported that tar balls continue to wash up, oil sheen trails are seen in the wake of fishing boats, wetlands marsh grass remains fouled and dying, and crude oil lies offshore in deep water and in fine silts and sands onshore.[25] A research team found oil on the bottom of the seafloor in late February 2011 that did not seem to be degrading.[26] On May 26, 2011, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality extended the state of emergency related to the oil spill.[27] By July 9, 2011, roughly 491 miles (790 kilometers) of coastline in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida remained contaminated by BP oil, according to a NOAA spokesperson.[28] In October 2011, a NOAA report shows dolphins and whales continue to die at twice the normal rate. [29]

In January 2011 the White House oil spill commission released its final report on the causes of the oil spill. They blamed BP and its partners for making a series of cost-cutting decisions and the lack of a system to ensure well safety. They also concluded that the spill was not an isolated incident caused by "rogue industry or government officials", but that "The root causes are systemic and, absent significant reform in both industry practices and government policies, might well recur".[30] After its own internal probe, BP admitted that it made mistakes which led to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.[31] In June 2010 BP set up a $20 billion fund to compensate victims of the oil spill. To July 2011, the fund has paid $4.7 billion to 198,475 claimants. In all, the fund has nearly 1 million claims and continues to receive thousands of claims each week.[32]

In September 2011, the US government published its final investigative report on the accident. In essence, that report states that the main cause was the defective cement job, and Halliburton, BP and Transocean were, in different ways, responsible for the accident.[33]



Deepwater Horizon drilling rig

Deepwater Horizon prior to explosion. Parts of the rig providing buoyancy are invisible below the waterline in this picture.
Origin of oil spill
Origin of oil spill
Location of the Deepwater Horizon on April 20, 2010

The Deepwater Horizon was a 9-year-old semi-submersible mobile offshore drilling unit, a massive floating, dynamically positioned drilling rig that could operate in waters up to 8,000 feet (2,400 m) deep and drill down to 30,000 feet (9,100 m).[34] The rig was built by South Korean company Hyundai Heavy Industries.[35] It was owned by Transocean, operated under the Marshallese flag of convenience, and was under lease to BP from March 2008 to September 2013.[36] At the time of the explosion, it was drilling an exploratory well at a water depth of approximately 5,000 feet (1,500 m) in the Macondo Prospect, located in the Mississippi Canyon Block 252 of the Gulf of Mexico in the United States exclusive economic zone about 41 miles (66 km) off the Louisiana coast.[37][38] Production casing was being installed and cemented by Halliburton Energy Services. Once the cementing was complete, the well would have been tested for integrity and a cement plug set, after which no further activities would take place until the well was later activated as a subsea producer.[39][40] At this point, Halliburton modelling systems were used several days running to design the cement slurry mix and ascertain what other supports were needed in the well bore.[41] BP is the operator and principal developer of the Macondo Prospect with a 65% share, while 25% is owned by Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, and 10% by MOEX Offshore 2007, a unit of Mitsui.[42] BP leased the mineral rights for Macondo at the Minerals Management Service's lease sale in March 2008.[43]


Vessels combat the fire on the Deepwater Horizon while the United States Coast Guard searches for missing crew

At approximately 9:45 p.m. CDT, on April 20, 2010, methane gas from the well, under high pressure, shot all the way up and out of the drill column, expanded onto the platform, and then ignited and exploded. Fire then engulfed the platform.[40][44] Most of the workers escaped the rig by lifeboat and were subsequently evacuated by boat or airlifted by helicopter for medical treatment;[45] however, eleven workers were never found despite a three-day Coast Guard search operation, and are believed to have died in the explosion.[46] Efforts by multiple ships to douse the flames were unsuccessful. After burning for approximately 36 hours, the Deepwater Horizon sank on the morning of April 22, 2010.[47]

Volume and extent of oil spill

An oil leak was discovered on the afternoon of April 22 when a large oil slick began to spread at the former rig site.[48] According to the Flow Rate Technical Group, the leak amounted to about 4.9 million barrels (780,000 m3) of oil exceeding the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill as the largest ever to originate in U.S.-controlled waters and the 1979 Ixtoc I oil spill as the largest spill in the Gulf of Mexico.[3][11]

Spill flow rate

In its permit to drill the well, BP estimated the worst case flow at 162,000 barrels per day (25,800 m3/d).[49] Immediately after the explosion, BP and the United States Coast Guard did not estimate any oil leaking from the sunken rig or from the well.[50] On April 24, Coast Guard Rear Admiral Mary Landry announced that a damaged wellhead was indeed leaking.[51][52] She stated that "the leak was a new discovery but could have begun when the offshore platform sank ... two days after the initial explosion."[51] Initial estimates by Coast Guard and BP officials, based on remotely operated vehicles as well as the oil slick size, indicated the leak was as much as 1,000 barrels per day (160 m3/d).[51] Outside scientists quickly produced higher estimates, which presaged later increases in official numbers.[53][54][55] Official estimates increased from 1,000 to 5,000 barrels per day (160 to 790 m3/d) on April 29,[56][57] to 12,000 to 19,000 barrels per day (1,900 to 3,000 m3/d) on May 27,[58][59][60][61] to 25,000 to 30,000 barrels per day (4,000 to 4,800 m3/d) on June 10,[62][63][64] and to between 35,000 and 60,000 barrels per day (5,600 and 9,500 m3/d), on June 15.[65][66] Internal BP documents, released by Congress, estimated the flow could be as much as 100,000 barrels per day (16,000 m3/d), if the blowout preventer and wellhead were removed and if restrictions were incorrectly modeled.[67][68]

Progression of oil spill flow rate estimates
Source Date Barrels per day Gallons per day Cubic metres per day
BP estimate of hypothetical worst case scenario (assumes no blowout preventer) Permit 162,000 6,800,000 25,800
United States Coast Guard April 23 (after sinking) 0 0 0
BP and United States Coast Guard April 24 1,000 42,000 160
Official estimates April 29 1,000 to 5,000 42,000 to 210,000 790
Official estimates May 27 12,000 to 19,000 500,000 to 800,000 1,900 to 3,000
Official estimates June 10 25,000 to 30,000 1,100,000 to 1,300,000 4,000 to 4,800
Flow Rate Technical Group June 19 35,000 to 60,000 1,500,000 to 2,500,000 5,600 to 9,500
Internal BP documents hypothetical worst case (assumes no blowout preventer) June 20 up to 150,000 up to 4,200,000 up to 16,000
Official estimates[69] August 2 62,000 2,604,000 9,857

Official estimates were provided by the Flow Rate Technical Group—scientists from USCG, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and outside academics, led by United States Geological Survey (USGS) director Marcia McNutt.[70][71][72] The later estimates were believed to be more accurate because it was no longer necessary to measure multiple leaks, and because detailed pressure measurements and high-resolution video had become available.[73] According to BP, estimating the oil flow was very difficult as there was no underwater metering at the wellhead and because of the natural gas in the outflow.[56] The company had initially refused to allow scientists to perform more accurate, independent measurements, saying that it was not relevant to the response and that such efforts might distract from efforts to stem the flow.[21] Former Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency Carol Browner and Congressman Ed Markey (D-MA) both accused BP of having a vested financial interest in downplaying the size of the leak in part due to the fine they will have to pay based on the amount of leaked oil.[74]

The final estimate reported that 53,000 barrels per day (8,400 m3/d) were escaping from the well just before it was capped on July 15. It is believed that the daily flow rate diminished over time, starting at about 62,000 barrels per day (9,900 m3/d) and decreasing as the reservoir of hydrocarbons feeding the gusher was gradually depleted.[11]

Spill area and thickness

Oil slicks surround the Chandeleur Islands, Louisiana, in this aerial photo.

The oil's spread was initially increased by strong southerly winds caused by an impending cold front. By April 25, 2010, the oil spill covered 580 square miles (1,500 km²) and was only 31 miles (50 km) from the ecologically sensitive Chandeleur Islands.[75] An April 30, 2010, estimate placed the total spread of the oil at 3,850 square miles (10,000 km²).[76] The spill quickly approached the Delta National Wildlife Refuge and Breton National Wildlife Refuge.[77] On May 19, 2010, both the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other scientists monitoring the spill with the European Space Agency Envisat radar satellite stated that oil had reached the Loop Current, which flows clockwise around the Gulf of Mexico towards Florida and then joins the Gulf Stream along the U.S. east coast.[78] On June 29, 2010, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration determined that the oil slick was no longer a threat to the loop current and stopped tracking offshore oil predictions that include the loop currents region. The omission is noted prominently on the ongoing nearshore surface oil forecasts that are posted daily on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration site.[78][79]

On May 14, 2010, the Automated Data Inquiry for Oil Spills model indicated that about 35% of a hypothetical 114,000 barrels (18,100 m3) spill of light Louisiana crude oil released in conditions similar to those found in the Gulf would evaporate, that 50% to 60% of the oil would remain in or on the water, and the rest would be dispersed in the ocean. In the same report, Ed Overton, a Louisiana State University chemist who analyzed the spill for NOAA, said he thought most of the oil was floating within 1 foot (30 cm) of the surface.[80] The New York Times tracked the size of the spill over time using data from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the US Coast Guard and Skytruth.[81]

The wellhead was capped on July 15, 2010, and by July 30, the oil appeared to have dissipated more rapidly than expected. Some scientists believe that the rapid dissipation of the surface oil may have been due to a combination of factors that included the natural capacity of the region to break down oil (petroleum normally leaks from the ocean floor by way of thousands of natural seeps and certain bacteria can consume it.); winds from storms appeared to have aided in rapidly dispersing the oil, and the cleanup response by BP and the government helped control surface slicks. As much as 40% of the oil may have simply evaporated at the ocean surface, and an unknown amount remains below the surface.[82]

However, many scientists dispute the report's methodology and figures.[83] Scientists said much oil was still underwater and could not be detected.[84] According to the NOAA report released on August 4, 2010, about half of the oil leaked into the Gulf remains on or below the Gulf's surface.[85] Some scientists are calling the NOAA estimates "ludicrous." According to University of South Florida chemical oceanographer David Hollander, while 25% of the oil can be accounted for by burning, skimming, etc., 75% is still unaccounted for.[86] The federal calculations are based on direct measurements for only 430,000 barrels (68,000 m3) of the oil spilled — the oil burned and skimmed. According to Bill Lehr, an author of the NOAA report, the other numbers are "educated scientific guesses," because "it is impossible to measure oil that is dispersed". FSU oceanography professor Ian MacDonald called it "a shaky report" and is unsatisfied with the thoroughness of the presentation and "sweeping assumptions" involved.[87] John Kessler of Texas A&M, who led a National Science Foundation on-site study of the spill, said the report that 75% of the oil is gone is "just not true" and that 50% to 75% of the material that came out of the well remains in the water in a "dissolved or dispersed form".[88] On August 16, 2010, University of Georgia scientists said their analysis of federal estimates show that 80% of the oil the government said was gone from the Gulf of Mexico is still there. The Georgia team said "it is a misinterpretation of data to claim that oil that is dissolved is actually gone".[89]

In a December 3, 2010, statement, BP claimed the government overestimated the size of the spill by between 20% and 50%. A document submitted by BP to the commission, NOAA, and The Justice Department says that "they rely on incomplete or inaccurate information, rest in large part on assumptions that have not been validated, and are subject to far greater uncertainties than have been acknowledged. Representative Edward Markey, a member of the House energy panel that is investigating the spill, said in a statement that BP has done whatever it could to avoid revealing the true flow rate of the spill. "With billions of dollars at stake, it is no surprise that they are now litigating the very numbers which they sought to impede." A BP spokesperson said that BP "fully intends to present its own estimate as soon as the information is available to get the science right."[90]

Oil sightings

Oil began washing up on the beaches of Gulf Islands National Seashore on June 1, 2010.[91] By June 4, 2010, the oil spill had landed on 125 miles (201 km) of Louisiana's coast, had washed up along Mississippi and Alabama barrier islands, and was found for the first time on a Florida barrier island at Pensacola Beach.[92] On June 9, 2010, oil sludge began entering the Intracoastal Waterway through Perdido Pass after floating booms across the opening of the pass failed to stop the oil.[93] On June 23, 2010, oil appeared on Pensacola Beach and in Gulf Islands National Seashore, and officials warned against swimming for 33 miles (53 km) east of the Alabama line.[94][95] On June 27, 2010, tar balls and small areas of oil reached Gulf Park Estates, the first appearance of oil in Mississippi.[96] Early in July 2010, tar balls reached Grand Isle, but 800 volunteers were cleaning them up.[97] On July 3 and July 4, 2010, tar balls and other isolated oil residue began washing ashore at beaches in Bolivar and Galveston, though it was believed a ship transported them there, and no further oil was found July 5.[98] On July 5, 2010, strings of oil were found in the Rigolets in Louisiana, and the next day tar balls reached the shore of Lake Pontchartrain.[98][99]

On September 10, 2010, it was reported that a new wave of oil suddenly coated 16 miles (26 km) of Louisiana coastline and marshes west of the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries confirmed the sightings.[100] On October 23, 2010, it was reported that miles-long stretches of weathered oil had been sighted in West Bay, Texas between Southwest Pass, the main shipping channel of the Mississippi River, and Tiger Pass near Venice, Louisiana. The sightings were confirmed by Matthew Hinton of The Times-Picayune.[101]

At the end of October 2010, two research vessels studying the spill's effect on sea life found substantial amounts of oil on the seafloor. Kevin Yeager, a University of Southern Mississippi assistant professor of marine sciences found oil in samples dug up from the seafloor in a 140-mile (230 km) radius around the site of the Macondo well. The oil ranged from light degraded oil to thick raw crude. The sheer abundance of oil and its proximity to the well site, though, makes it "highly likely" that the oil is from the Macondo well. A second research team turned up traces of oil in sediment samples as well as evidence of chemical dispersants in blue crab larvae and long plumes of oxygen-depleted water emanating from the well site 50 miles (80 km) off Louisiana's coast.[102]

In late November, Plaquemine Parish, Louisiana coastal zone director P.J. Hahn reported that more than 32,000 US gallons (120 m3) of oil had been sucked out of nearby marshes in the previous 10 day period. In Barataria Bay, Louisiana, photos and firsthand accounts show oil still reaching high into the marshes, baby crabs and adult shrimp covered by crude and oil slicks on the surface of the water.[24]

Underwater oil plumes

On May 15, 2010, researchers from the National Institute for Undersea Science and Technology,[103] aboard the research vessel RV Pelican, identified oil plumes in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico,[104] including one as large as 10 miles (16 km) long, 3 miles (4.8 km) wide and 300 feet (91 m) thick in spots. The shallowest oil plume the group detected was at about 2,300 feet (700 m), while the deepest was near the seafloor at about 4,593 feet (1,400 m).[105] Other researchers from the University of Georgia found that the oil may have occupied multiple layers.[106]

By May 27, 2010, marine scientists from the University of South Florida had discovered a second oil plume, stretching 22 miles (35 km) from the leaking wellhead toward Mobile Bay, Alabama. The oil had dissolved into the water and was no longer visible. Undersea plumes may have been the result of the use of wellhead chemical dispersants.[107]

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) conducted an independent analysis of the water samples provided from the May 22–28, 2010, research mission of the University of South Florida's Weatherbird II vessel. The samples from all undersea plumes were in very low concentrations, less than 0.5 parts per million. NOAA indicated that one of the plumes was unrelated to the BP wellhead leak, while the other plume samples were in concentrations too low or too highly fractionated to determine their origin.[108]

Reporting on a study that ended on June 28, 2010, scientists published conclusive evidence of a deep plume 22 miles (35 km) long linked directly to the Deepwater Horizon well. They reported that it did not appear to be degrading quickly and that it may pose a long-lasting threat for marine life deep in the ocean.[109]

On July 23, 2010, University of South Florida researchers and NOAA released two separate studies confirming subsea plumes of oil resulting from the Deepwater Horizon well.[110]

Researchers from NOAA and Princeton University concluded that the deep plumes of dissolved oil and gas would likely remain confined to the northern Gulf of Mexico and that the peak impact on dissolved oxygen would be delayed (several months) and long lasting (years).[111]

David Valentine of the University of California, Santa Barbara believes that the oil plumes had been diluted in the ocean faster than they had biodegraded, suggesting that the LBNL researchers were overestimating the rate of biodegration.[112] He did not challenge the conclusion that the oil plumes had dispersed.

When scientists initially reported the discovery of undersea oil plumes, BP stated its sampling showed no evidence that oil was massing and spreading in the gulf water column. NOAA chief Jane Lubchenco urged caution, calling the reports "misleading, premature and, in some cases, inaccurate."[113] Researchers from the Universities of South Florida and Southern Mississippi claim the government tried to squelch their findings.[114][115][116] In a report released on June 8, 2010, NOAA stated that one plume was consistent with the oil from the leak, one was not consistent, and that they were unable to determine the origin of two samples.[108]

On June 23, 2010, NOAA released a report which confirmed deepwater oil plumes in the Gulf and that they did originate from BP's well, citing a "preponderance of evidence" gathered from four separate sampling cruises. From the government's report:[117] "The preponderance of evidence based on careful examination of the results from these four different cruises leads us to conclude that DWH-MC252 oil exists in subsurface waters near the well site in addition to the oil observed at the sea surface and that this oil appears to be chemically dispersed. While no chemical "fingerprinting" of samples was conducted to conclusively determine origin, the proximity to the well site and the following analysis support this conclusion".[118]

In October 2010, scientists reported a continuous plume of over 22 miles (35 km) in length at a depth of about 3,600 ft (1,100 m). That plume persisted for several months without substantial degradation.[119]

Oil on seafloor

On September 10, 2010, Samantha Joye, a professor in the Department of Marine Sciences at the University of Georgia on a research vessel in the Gulf of Mexico announced her team's findings of a substantial layer of oily sediment stretching for dozens of miles in all directions suggesting that a lot of oil did not evaporate or dissipate but may have settled to the seafloor. She describes seeing layers of oily material covering the bottom of the seafloor, in some places more than 2 inches (51 mm) thick on top of normal sediments containing dead shrimp and other organisms. She speculates that the source may be organisms that have broken down the spilled oil and excreted an oily mucus that sinks, taking with it oil droplets that stick to the mucous. "We have to [chemically] fingerprint the oil and link it to the Deepwater Horizon," she says. "But the sheer coverage here is leading us all to come to the conclusion that it has to be sedimented oil from the oil spill, because it's all over the place."[120][121]

By January 2011, USF researchers found layers of oil near the wellhead that were “up to 5 times thicker” than recorded by the team in August 2010. USF's David Hollander remarked, “Oil’s presence on the ocean floor didn’t diminish with time; it grew” and he pointed out, “the layer is distributed very widely,” radiating far from the wellhead.[122]

Independent monitoring

Wildlife and environmental groups accused BP of holding back information about the extent and impact of the growing slick, and urged the White House to order a more direct federal government role in the spill response. In prepared testimony for a congressional committee, National Wildlife Federation President Larry Schweiger said BP had failed to disclose results from its tests of chemical dispersants used on the spill, and that BP had tried to withhold video showing the true magnitude of the leak.[123] On May 19, 2010, BP established a live feed, popularly known as spillcam, of the oil spill after hearings in Congress accused the company of withholding data from the ocean floor and blocking efforts by independent scientists to come up with estimates for the amount of crude flowing into the Gulf each day.[124][125] On May 20, 2010, United States Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar indicated that the U.S. government would verify how much oil had leaked into the Gulf of Mexico.[126] Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson and United States Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano asked for the results of tests looking for traces of oil and dispersant chemicals in the waters of the gulf.[127]

Journalists attempting to document the impact of the oil spill were repeatedly refused access to public areas, and photojournalists were prevented from flying over areas of the gulf to document the scope of the disaster. These accusations were leveled at BP, its contractors, local law enforcement, USCG, and other government officials.[128][129] Scientists also complained about prevention of access to information controlled by BP and government sources.[128] BP stated that its policy was to allow the media and other parties as much access as possible.[128] On June 30, 2010, the Coast Guard put new restrictions in place across the Gulf Coast that prevented vessels from coming within 20 meters (66 ft) "of booming operations, boom, or oil spill response operations".[130] In a press briefing, Coast Guard admiral Thad Allen said the new regulation was related to safety issues.[131] On CNN's 360, host Anderson Cooper rejected the motivation for the restrictions outright.[132]

Efforts to stem the flow of oil

Short-term efforts

Oil containment dome under construction in Port Fourchon, Louisiana, at Wild Well Control on April 26

The first attempts to stop the flow of oil was the use of remotely operated underwater vehicles to close the blowout preventer valves on the well head; however, all these attempts failed.[75][133] The second technique, placing a 125-tonne (280,000 lb) containment dome (which had worked on leaks in shallower water) over the largest leak and piping the oil to a storage vessel on the surface, failed when gas leaking from the pipe combined with cold water formed methane hydrate crystals that blocked the opening at the top of the dome.[134] Attempts to close the well by pumping heavy drilling fluids into the blowout preventer to restrict the flow of oil before sealing it permanently with cement ("top kill") also failed.[135][136]

More successful was positioning a riser insertion tube into the wide burst pipe. There was a stopper-like washer around the tube that plugs the end of the riser and diverts the flow into the insertion tube.[137] The collected gas was flared and oil stored on the board of drillship Discoverer Enterprise.[138] Before the tube was removed, 924,000 US gallons (22,000 bbl) of oil were collected.[139] By June 3, 2010, BP removed the damaged riser from the top of the blowout preventer and covered the pipe by the cap which connected it to a riser.[140] CEO of BP Tony Hayward stated that as a result of this process the amount captured was "probably the vast majority of the oil."[141] However, the FRTG member Ira Leifer said that more oil was escaping than before the riser was cut and the cap containment system was placed.[142]

The Q4000 and the Discoverer Enterprise during the failed top kill procedure

On June 16, 2010, a second containment system connected directly to the blowout preventer became operational carrying oil and gas to service vessels where it was burned in a clean-burning system.[143][143][144]

On July 5, 2010, BP announced that its one-day oil recovery effort accounted for about 25,000 barrels (4,000 m3) of oil, and the flaring off of 57.1 million cubic feet (1.62×10^6 m3) of natural gas. The total oil collection to date for the spill was estimated at 660,000 barrels (105,000 m3).[145] The government's estimates suggested the cap and other equipment were capturing less than half of the oil leaking from the sea floor as of late June 2010.[94]

On July 10, 2010, the containment cap was removed to replace it with a better-fitting cap consisting of a Flange Transition Spool and a 3 Ram Stack ("Top Hat Number 10").[146][147] On July 15 BP tested the well integrity by shutting off pipes that were funneling some of the oil to ships on the surface, so the full force of the gusher from the wellhead went up into the cap.[148][149] The attempt to cap the wellhead was successful and mud and cement were later pumped in through the top of the well to reduce the pressure inside it, providing a temporary stop to the flow of oil.[13]

Considerations of using explosives

In mid-May, United States Secretary of Energy Steven Chu assembled a team of nuclear physicists, including hydrogen bomb designer Richard Garwin and Sandia National Laboratories director Tom Hunter.[150] On May 24, 2010, BP ruled out conventional explosives, saying that if blasts failed to clog the well, "We would have denied ourselves all other options."[151]

Permanent closure

Transocean's Development Driller III started drilling a first relief well on May 2, 2010, and was at 13,978 feet (4,260 m) out of 18,000 feet (5,500 m) as of June 14, 2010. GSF Development Driller II started drilling a second relief on May 16, 2010, and was halted at 8,576 feet (2,614 m) out of 18,000 feet (5,500 m) as of June 14, 2010, while BP engineers verified the operational status of the second relief well's blowout preventer.[152][153][154][155][156][157] Each relief well was expected to cost about $100 million.[158][159]

Starting at 15:00 CDT, on August 3, 2010, first test oil and then drilling mud was pumped at a slow rate of approximately 2 barrels (320 L) per minute into the well-head. Pumping continued for eight hours, at the end of which time the well was declared to be "in a static condition."[160] At 09:15 CDT, on August 4, with Adm. Allen's approval, BP began pumping cement from the top, sealing that part of the flow channel permanently.[161]

On August 4, 2010, Allen said the static kill was working.[162] Two weeks later, though, Allen said it was uncertain when the well could be declared completely sealed. The bottom kill had yet to take place, and the relief well had been delayed by storms. Even when the relief well was ready, he said, BP had to make sure pressure would not build up again.[163] On August 19, 2010, Allen said that some scientists believed it was possible that a collapse of rock formations had kept the oil from continuing to flow and that the well might not be permanently sealed.[164] The U.S. government wanted the failed blowout preventer to be replaced in case of any pressure that occurs when the relief well intersects with the well.[165] On September 3, 2010, at 1:20 p.m. CDT, the 300 ton failed blowout preventer was removed from the well and began being slowly lifted to the surface.[165] Later that day, a replacement blowout preventer was placed on the well.[166] On September 4, at 6:54 p.m. CDT, the failed blowout preventer reached the surface of the water, and at 9:16 p.m. CDT, it was placed in a special container on board the vessel Helix Q4000.[166] The failed blowout preventer was to be taken to a NASA facility in Louisiana for examination.[166]

On September 10, 2010, Allen said the bottom kill could start sooner than expected because a "locking sleeve" could be used on top of the well to prevent excessive pressure from causing problems. BP said the relief well was about 50 feet (15 m) from the intersection, and finishing the boring would take four more days.[167] On September 16, the relief well reached its destination and pumping of cement to seal the well began.[168]

On September 19, 2010, BP effectively killed the Macondo well.[169] The relief well being drilled intersected the blown-out well Thursday, September 16, and crews started pumping in cement on Friday, September 17 to permanently plug it. Retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen said, BP's well was "effectively dead."[169] Allen said that a pressure test to ensure the cement plug would hold was completed at 5:54 a.m. CDT. He added, "Additional regulatory steps will be undertaken but we can now state definitively that the Macondo well poses no continuing threat to the Gulf of Mexico".[169]

Even in properly sealed wells, the cement plugs can fail over the decades and metal casings that line the wells can rust.[170]

Efforts to protect the coastline and marine environments

Men in hard hats standing near water next to large pile of bundled large yellow deflated rubber tubing
United States Environmental Services workers prepare oil containment booms for deployment

The three fundamental strategies for addressing spilled oil were: to contain it on the surface, away from the most sensitive areas, to dilute and disperse it into less sensitive areas, and to remove it from the water. The Deepwater response employed all three strategies, using a variety of techniques. While most of the oil drilled off Louisiana is a lighter crude, the leaking oil was of a heavier blend which contained asphalt-like substances. According to Ed Overton, who heads a federal chemical hazard assessment team for oil spills, this type of oil emulsifies well. Once it becomes emulsified, it no longer evaporates as quickly as regular oil, does not rinse off as easily, cannot be eaten by microbes as easily, and does not burn as well. "That type of mixture essentially removes all the best oil clean-up weapons", Overton said.[171]

On May 6, 2010, BP began documenting the daily response efforts on its web site.[172] While these efforts began using only BP's resources, on April 28, Doug Suttles, chief operating officer, welcomed the US military as it joined the cleanup operation.[56] The response increased in scale as the spill volume grew. Initially, BP employed remotely operated underwater vehicles, 700 workers, four airplanes, and 32 vessels.[51] By April 29, 69 vessels, including skimmers, tugs, barges, and recovery vessels, were active in cleanup activities. On May 4, the US Coast Guard estimated that 170 vessels, and nearly 7,500 personnel were participating, with an additional 2,000 volunteers assisting.[173] On May 26, all 125 commercial fishing boats helping in the clean up were ordered ashore after some workers began experiencing health problems.[174] On May 31, BP set up a call line to take cleanup suggestions which received 92,000 responses by late June, 320 of which were categorized as promising.[175]


An oil containment boom deployed by the U.S. Navy surrounds New Harbor Island, Louisiana.

The response included deploying many miles of containment boom, whose purpose is to either corral the oil, or to block it from a marsh, mangrove, shrimp/crab/oyster ranch or other ecologically sensitive areas. Booms extend 18–48 inches (0.46–1.2 m) above and below the water surface and are effective only in relatively calm and slow-moving waters. More than 100,000 feet (30 km) of containment booms were initially deployed to protect the coast and the Mississippi River Delta.[159] By the next day, that nearly doubled to 180,000 feet (55 km), with an additional 300,000 feet (91 km) staged or being deployed.[176][177]

Some US lawmakers and local officials claimed that the booms didn't work as intended, saying there is more shoreline to protect than lengths of boom to protect it and that inexperienced operators didn't lay the boom correctly. Billy Nungesser, president of Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, said the boom "washes up on the shore with the oil, and then we have oil in the marsh, and we have an oily boom. So we have two problems”.[178]

Barrier island plan

On May 21, Plaquemines Parish president Billy Nungesser publicly complained about the federal government's hindrance of local mitigation efforts. State and local officials had proposed building sand berms off the coast to catch the oil before it reached the wetlands, but the emergency permit request had not been answered for over two weeks. The following day, Nungesser complained that the plan had been vetoed, while Army Corps of Engineers officials said that the request was still under review.[179] Gulf Coast Government officials released water through Mississippi River diversions to create an outflow of water that would keep the oil off the coast. The water from these diversions comes from the entire Mississippi watershed. Even with this approach, on May 23, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted a massive landfall to the west of the Mississippi River at Port Fourchon.[180] On May 23, Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell wrote to Lieutenant General Robert L. Van Antwerp of the US Army Corps of Engineers, stating that Louisiana had the right to dredge sand to build barrier islands to keep the oil spill from its wetlands without the Corps' approval, as the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prevents the federal government from denying a state the right to act in an emergency.[181][182][183] He also wrote that if the Corps "persists in its illegal and ill-advised efforts" to prevent the state from building the barriers that he would advise Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal to build the berms and challenge the Corps in court.[184] On June 3, BP said barrier projects ordered by Adm. Thad Allen would cost $360 million.[185] On June 16, Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company under the Shaw Environmental and Infrastructure Group began constructing sand berms off the Louisiana coast.[186]

By late October, the state of Louisiana had spent $240 million of the proposed $360 million from BP. The barrier had captured an estimated 1,000 barrels (160 m3) of oil, but critics and experts[who?] say the barrier is purely symbolic and call it "an exercise in futility" given the estimated 5,000,000 barrels (790,000 m3) of oil in the gulf and the millions of dollars and man-hours used to build the barrier. Many scientists say the remaining oil in the Gulf is far too dispersed to be blocked or captured by the sand structures. "It certainly would have no impact on the diluted oil, which is what we're talking about now," said Larry McKinney, head of the Gulf of Mexico research center at Texas A&M University. "The probability of their being effective right now is pretty low."[187]

On December 16, a report by a presidential commission called the berms project "underwhelmingly effective, overwhelmingly expensive" because little oil appeared on the berms. However, the commission admitted the berm might help with reversing the effects of erosion on the coast. Jindal called the report "partisan revisionist history at taxpayer expense".[188]


Spilled oil naturally disperses through storms, currents, and osmosis with the passage of time. Chemical dispersants accelerate the dispersal process, although they may have significant side-effects. Corexit EC9500A and Corexit EC9527A have been the principal dispersants employed.[189] These contain propylene glycol, 2-Butoxyethanol, and dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate.[190][191] 2-butoxyethanol was identified as a causal agent in the health problems experienced by cleanup workers after the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill.[191] Warnings from the Hazardous Substance Fact Sheet for 2-Butoxyethanol include "Cancer Hazard: 2-Butoxy Ethanol may be a carcinogen in humans since it has been shown to cause liver cancer in animals. Many scientists believe there is no safe level of exposure to a carcinogen" and "Reproductive Hazard: 2-Butoxy Ethanol may damage the developing fetus. There is limited evidence that 2-Butoxy Ethanol may damage the male reproductive system (including decreasing the sperm count) in animals and may affect female fertility in animals".[192]

Environmental groups attempted to obtain information regarding the composition and safety of ingredients in Corexit through the Freedom of Information Act but were denied by the EPA. After Earthjustice sued on behalf of the Gulf Restoration Network and the Florida Wildlife Federation, the EPA released a list of all 57 chemicals in the 14 dispersents on the EPA's National Contingency Plan Product Schedule. In August 2011, Earthjustice and Toxipedia released an analysis of the 57 chemicals, stating that "5 chemicals are associated with cancer; 33 are associated with skin irritation from rashes to burns; 33 are linked to eye irritation; 11 are or are suspected of being potential respiratory toxins or irritants; 10 are suspected kidney toxins; 8 are suspected or known to be toxic to aquatic organisms; and 5 are suspected to have a moderate acute toxicity to fish.”[193]

Corexit manufacturer Nalco states that "[COREXIT 9500] is a simple blend of six well-established, safe ingredients that biodegrade, do not bioaccumulate and are commonly found in popular household products....COREXIT products do not contain carcinogens or reproductive toxins. All the ingredients have been extensively studied for many years and have been determined safe and effective by the EPA".[194] However, according to the OSHA-required Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs) for both versions of Corexit used in the Gulf,[195][195] "Component substances have a potential to bioconcentrate" (or bioaccumulate), defined by the EPA as "accumulation of a chemical in tissues of a fish or other organism to levels greater than in the surrounding medium". The data sheets further state: "No toxicity studies have been conducted on this product".[196]

Corexit EC9500A and EC9527A are neither the least toxic, nor the most effective, among the Environmental Protection Agency approved dispersants.[197] They are also banned from use on oil spills in the United Kingdom.[198] Twelve other products received better toxicity and effectiveness ratings, but BP says it chose to use Corexit because it was available the week of the rig explosion.[197][199] Critics contend that the major oil companies stockpile Corexit because of their close business relationship with its manufacturer Nalco.[197][200]

A large four propeller airplane spraying liquid over oil-sheen water
A C-130 Hercules drops an oil-dispersing chemical into the Gulf of Mexico

On May 1, two military C-130 Hercules aircraft were employed to spray oil dispersant.[201] On May 7, Secretary Alan Levine of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality Secretary Peggy Hatch, and Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Robert Barham sent a letter to BP outlining their concerns related to potential dispersant impact on Louisiana's wildlife and fisheries, environment, aquatic life, and public health. Officials requested that BP release information on their dispersant effects. The Environmental Protection Agency later approved the injection of dispersants directly at the leak site, to break up the oil before it reaches the surface, after three underwater tests.[202] Independent scientists suggest that underwater injection of Corexit into the leak might be responsible for the oil plumes discovered below the surface.[199] However, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration administrator Jane Lubchenco said that there was no information supporting this conclusion, and indicated further testing would be needed to ascertain the cause of the undersea oil clouds.[199] By July 12, BP had reported applying 1,070,000 US gallons (4,100 m3) of Corexit on the surface and 721,000 US gallons (2,730 m3) underwater (subsea).[203] The same document listed available stocks of Corexit which decreased by over 965,000 US gallons (3,650 m3) without reported application, suggesting either stock diversion or unreported application. Under reported subsea application of 1,690,000 US gallons (6,400 m3) would account for this discrepancy. Given the suggested dispersant to oil ratio between 1:10 and 1:50, the possible use of 1,690,000 US gallons (6,400 m3) in subsea application could be expected to suspend between 400,000 barrels (64,000 m3) to 2,000,000 barrels (320,000 m3) of oil below the surface of the Gulf.[citation needed]

On May 19, the Environmental Protection Agency gave BP 24 hours to choose less toxic alternatives to Corexit from the list of dispersants on the National Contingency Plan Product Schedule, begin applying the new dispersant(s) within 72 hours of Environmental Protection Agency approval or provide a detailed reasoning why the approved products did not meet the required standards.[204][205] On May 20, US Polychemical Corporation reportedly received an order from BP for its Dispersit SPC 1000 dispersant. US Polychemical said that it could produce 20,000 US gallons (76 m3) a day in the first few days, increasing up to 60,000 US gallons (230 m3) a day thereafter.[206] Also on May 20, BP determined that none of the alternative products met all three criteria of availability, toxicity, and effectiveness.[207] On 24 May, Environmental Protection Agency administrator Jackson ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to conduct its own evaluation of alternatives and ordered BP to scale back dispersant use.[208][209] According to analysis of daily dispersant reports provided by the Deepwater Horizon Unified Command, before May 26, BP used 25,689 US gallons (97.24 m3) a day of Corexit. After the EPA directive, the daily average of dispersant use dropped to 23,250 US gallons (88.0 m3) a day, a 9% decline.[210] By July 30, more than 1,800,000 US gallons (6,800 m3) of dispersant had been used, mostly Corexit 9500.[211]

On July 31, Rep. Edward Markey, Chairman of the House Energy and Environment Subcommittee, released a letter sent to National Incident Commander Thad Allen, and documents revealing that the U.S. Coast Guard repeatedly allowed BP to use excessive amounts of the dispersant Corexit on the surface of the ocean. Markey's letter, based on an analysis conducted by the Energy and Environment Subcommittee staff, further showed that by comparing the amounts BP reported using to Congress to the amounts contained in the company's requests for exemptions from the ban on surface dispersants it submitted to the Coast Guard, that BP often exceeded its own requests, with little indication that it informed the Coast Guard or that the Coast Guard attempted to verify whether BP was exceeding approved volumes. “Either BP was lying to Congress or to the Coast Guard about how much dispersants they were shooting onto the ocean,” said Rep. Markey.[212]

On August 2, the EPA said dispersants did no more harm to the environment than the oil itself, and that they stopped a large amount of oil from reaching the coast by making the oil break down faster.[213] However, independent scientists and EPA's own experts continue to voice concerns regarding the use of dispersants.[214]

Dispersant use was said to have stopped after the cap was in place.[213] Marine toxicologist Riki Ott wrote an open letter to the EPA in late August with evidence that dispersant use had not stopped and that it was being administered near shore.[215] Independent testing supported her claim. New Orleans-based attorney Stuart Smith, representing the Louisiana-based United Commercial Fisherman’s Association and the Louisiana Environmental Action Network said he “personally saw C-130s applying dispersants from [his] hotel room in the Florida Panhandle. They were spraying directly adjacent to the beach right at dusk. Fishermen I’ve talked to say they’ve been sprayed. This idea they are not using this stuff near the coast is nonsense.” [216]

Use of dispersants deep under water

Some 1,100,000 US gallons (4,200 m3) of chemical dispersants were sprayed at the wellhead 5,000 feet (1,500 m) under the sea.[217] This had never previously been tried but due to the unprecedented nature of this spill, BP along with the U.S. Coast Guard and the Environmental Protection Agency, decided to use "the first subsea injection of dispersant directly into oil at the source".[218]

Dispersants are said to facilitate the digestion of the oil by microbes. Mixing the dispersants with the oil at the wellhead would keep some oil below the surface and in theory, allow microbes to digest the oil before it reached the surface. Various risks were identified and evaluated, in particular that an increase in the microbe activity might reduce the oxygen in the water. Various models were run and the effects of the use of the dispersants was monitored closely. The use of dispersants at the wellhead was pursued and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) estimated that roughly 409,000 barrels (65,000 m3) of oil were dispersed underwater.[219]

Environmental scientists say the dispersants, which can cause genetic mutations and cancer, add to the toxicity of the spill and that sea turtles and bluefin tuna are exposed to an even greater risk than crude alone. According to them, the dangers are even greater for dispersants poured into the source of the spill, where they are picked up by the current and wash through the Gulf.[220] University of South Florida scientists released preliminary results on the toxicity of microscopic drops of oil in the undersea plumes, finding that they may be more toxic than previously thought. The researchers say the dispersed oil appears to be negatively affecting bacteria and phytoplankton – the microscopic plants which make up the basis of the Gulf's food web. The field-based results were consistent with shore-based laboratory studies showing that phytoplankton are more sensitive to chemical dispersants than the bacteria, which are more sensitive to oil.[221] On the other hand, NOAA says that toxicity tests have suggested that the acute risk of dispersant-oil mixtures is no greater than that of oil alone.[219] However, some experts believe that all the benefits and costs may not be known for decades.[219]

Because the dispersants were applied deep under the sea, much of the oil never rose to the surface — which means it went somewhere else, said Robert Diaz, a marine scientist at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va. "The dispersants definitely don't make oil disappear. They take it from one area in an ecosystem and put it in another," Diaz said.[217] One plume of dipersed oil measured at 22 miles (35 km) long, more than a mile wide and 650 feet (200 m) tall. The plume showed the oil "is persisting for longer periods than we would have expected," said researchers with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. "Many people speculated that subsurface oil droplets were being easily biodegraded. Well, we didn’t find that. We found it was still there".[222] In a major study on the plume, experts found the most worrisome part to be the slow pace at which the oil was breaking down in the cold, 40 °F (4 °C) water at depths of 3,000 feet (910 m) 'making it a long-lasting but unseen threat to vulnerable marine life'.[223] In September, Marine Sciences at the University of Georgia reported findings of a substantial layer of oily sediment stretching for dozens of miles in all directions from the capped well.[120]


The three basic approaches for removing the oil from the water were burning the oil, filtering offshore, and collecting for later processing. On April 28, the US Coast Guard announced plans to corral and burn off up to 1,000 barrels (160 m3) of oil each day. It tested how much environmental damage a small, controlled burn of 100 barrels (16 m3) did to surrounding wetlands, but could not proceed with an open ocean burn due to poor conditions.[176][224]

BP stated that more than 215,000 barrels (34,200 m3) of oil-water mix had been recovered by May 25.[76] In mid June, BP ordered 32 machines that separate oil and water with each machine capable of extracting up to 2,000 barrels (320 m3) per day,[225][226] BP agreed to use the technology after testing machines for one week.[227] By June 28, BP had successfully removed 890,000 barrels (141,000 m3) of oily liquid and burned about 314,000 barrels (49,900 m3) of oil.[228]

In November the EPA reported that there were successful attempts made to contain the environmental impact of the oil spill, in which the Unified Command used the "situ burning" method to burn off the oil in controlled environments on the surface of the ocean to try and limit the environmental damages on the ocean as well as the shorelines. 411 controlled burn events took place, of which 410 could be quantified. Burning off approximately 9,300,000 to 13,100,000 US gallons (35,000 to 50,000 m3) on the ocean surface.[229]

The Environmental Protection Agency prohibited the use of skimmers that left more than 15 parts per million of oil in the water. Many large-scale skimmers were therefore unable to be used in the cleanup because they exceed this limit.[230] An urban myth developed that the U.S. government declined the offers because of the requirements of the Jones Act.[231] This proved untrue and many foreign assets deployed to aid in cleanup efforts.[232] The Taiwanese supertanker A Whale, recently retrofitted as a skimmer, was tested in early July but failed to collect a significant amount of oil.[233] According to Bob Grantham, a spokesman for shipowner TMT, this was due to BP's use of chemical dispersants.[234] The Coast Guard said 33,000,000 US gallons (120,000 m3) of tainted water had been recovered, with 5,000,000 US gallons (19,000 m3) of that consisting of oil. An estimated 11,000,000 US gallons (42,000 m3) of oil were burned. BP said 826,000 barrels (131,300 m3) had been recovered or flared. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) estimated that about 25% of the oil had been removed from the Gulf. The table below presents the NOAA estimates based on an estimated release of 4,900,000 barrels (780,000 m3) of oil (the category "chemically dispersed" includes dispersal at the surface and at the wellhead; "naturally dispersed" was mostly at the wellhead; "residual" is the oil remaining as surface sheen, floating tarballs, and oil washed ashore or buried in sediment). However, there is plus or minus 10% uncertainty in the total volume of the oil spill.[235] [236]

Two months after these numbers were released Carol Browner, director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy, said they were "never meant to be a precise tool" and that the data "was simply not designed to explain, or capable of explaining, the fate of the oil... oil that the budget classified as dispersed, dissolved, or evaporated is not necessarily gone".[237]

Category Estimate Alternative 1 Alternative 2
Direct recovery from wellhead 17% 17% 17%
Burned at the surface 5% 5% 5%
Skimmed from the surface 3% 3% 3%
Chemically dispersed 8% 10% 6%
Naturally dispersed 16% 20% 12%
Evaporated or dissolved 25% 32% 18%
Residual remaining 26% 13% 39%

Based on these estimates, up to 75% of the oil from BP's Gulf oil disaster still remained in the Gulf environment, according to Christopher Haney, chief scientist for Defenders of Wildlife, who called the government report's conclusions misleading. Haney said. "Terms such as 'dispersed,' 'dissolved' and 'residual' do not mean gone. That's comparable to saying the sugar dissolved in my coffee is no longer there because I can't see it. By Director Lubchenco's own acknowledgment, the oil which is out of sight is not benign. "Whether buried under beaches or settling on the ocean floor, residues from the spill will remain toxic for decades."[238]

Appearing before Congress, Bill Lehr, a senior scientist at NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration, defended a report written by the National Incident Command (NIC) on the fate of the oil. This report relied on numbers generated by government and non-government oil spill experts, using an Oil Budget Calculator (OBC) developed for this spill. Based upon the OBC, Lehr said 6% was burned and 4% was skimmed but he could not be confident of numbers for the amount collected from beaches. As seen in the table above, he pointed out that much of the oil has evaporated or been dispersed or dissolved into the water column. Under questioning from congressman Ed Markey, Lehr agreed that the report said the amount of oil that went into the Gulf was 4.1m barrels, noting that 800,000 barrels (130,000 m3) were siphoned off directly from the well.

NOAA has been criticized by some independent scientists and Congress for the report's conclusions and for failing to explain how the scientists arrived at the calculations detailed in the table above. A formally peer-reviewed report documenting the OBC was scheduled for release in early October.[239] Markey told Lehr the NIC report had given the public a false sense of confidence. "You shouldn't have released it until you knew it was right," he said. Ian MacDonald, an ocean scientist at Florida State University, claims the NIC report "was not science". He accused the White House of making "sweeping and largely unsupported" claims that three-quarters of the oil in the Gulf was gone. "I believe this report is misleading," he said. "The imprint will be there in the Gulf of Mexico for the rest of my life. It is not gone and it will not go away quickly."[240]

By late July, two weeks after the flow of oil had stopped, oil on the surface of the Gulf had largely dissipated but concern still remained for underwater oil and ecological damage.[241] In August, scientists had determined as much as 79% of the oil remains in the Gulf of Mexico, under the surface.[242] In March 2011, it was reported that thousands of pounds of oil and dispersant were still collected each day from highly visible resort areas and that 17,000 lb (7,700 kg) were collected from a beach in Alabama after a winter storm.[243]

Oil eating microbes

In August, a study of bacterial activity in the Gulf led by Terry Hazen of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, found a previously unknown bacterial species and reported in the journal Science that it was able to break down the oil without depleting oxygen levels. [244] Hazen’s interpretation had its skeptics. John Kessler, a chemical oceanographer at Texas A&M University says “what Hazen was measuring was a component of the entire hydrocarbon matrix,” which is a complex mix of literally thousands of different molecules. Although the few molecules described in the new paper in Science may well have degraded within weeks, Kessler says, “there are others that have much longer half-lives — on the order of years, sometimes even decades.”[245] He noted that the missing oil has been found in the form of large oil plumes, one the size of Manhattan, which do not appear to be biodegrading very fast.[246]

By mid-September, research showed these microbes mainly digested natural gas spewing from the wellhead – propane, ethane, and butane – rather than oil, according to a subsequent study published in the journal Science.[247] David L. Valentine, a professor of microbial geochemistry at UC Santa Barbara, said that the oil-gobbling properties of the microbes had been grossly overstated.[248] Methane was the most abudant hydrocarbon released during the spill. It has been suggested that vigorous deepwater bacterial bloom respired nearly all the released methane within 4 months, leaving behind a residual microbial community containing methanotrophic bacteria.[249]

Some experts have suggested that the proliferation of the bacteria may be causing health issues for residents of the Gulf Coast. Marine toxicologist Riki Ott says that the bacteria, some of which have been genetically modified, or otherwise bio-engineered to better eat the oil, might be responsible for an outbreak of mysterious skin rashes noted by Gulf physicians.[248][250]



The spill is the "worst environmental disaster the US has faced", according to White House energy adviser Carol Browner.[251] Indeed, the spill was by far the largest in US history, almost 20 times greater than the Exxon Valdez oil spill.[252] Factors such as petroleum toxicity, oxygen depletion and the use of Corexit dispersant are expected to be the main causes of damage.[253][254] Eight U.S. national parks are threatened.[255] More than 400 species that live in the Gulf islands and marshlands are at risk, including the endangered Kemp's Ridley turtle, the Green Turtle, the Loggerhead Turtle, the Hawksbill Turtle, and the Leatherback Turtle. In the national refuges most at risk, about 34,000 birds have been counted, including gulls, pelicans, roseate spoonbills, egrets, terns, and blue herons.[76] A comprehensive 2009 inventory of offshore Gulf species counted 15,700. The area of the oil spill includes 8,332 species, including more than 1,200 fish, 200 birds, 1,400 molluscs, 1,500 crustaceans, 4 sea turtles, and 29 marine mammals.[256][257] As of November 2, 2010, 6,814 dead animals had been collected, including 6,104 birds, 609 sea turtles, 100 dolphins and other mammals, and 1 other reptile.[258][259] According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, cause of death had not been determined as of late June. According to NOAA, since January 1, 2011, 67 dead dolphins have been found in the area affected by the oil spill, with 35 of them premature or newborn calves. The cause is under investigation.[260]

In May, 2010, Duke University marine biologist Larry Crowder said threatened loggerhead turtles on Carolina beaches could swim out into contaminated waters. Ninety percent of North Carolina's commercially valuable sea life spawn off the coast and could be contaminated if oil reaches the area. Douglas Rader, a scientist for the Environmental Defense Fund, said prey could be negatively affected as well. Steve Ross of UNC-Wilmington said coral reefs could be smothered.[261] In early June Harry Roberts, a professor of Coastal Studies at Louisiana State University, stated that 4,000,000 barrels (640,000 m3) of oil would be enough to "wipe out marine life deep at sea near the leak and elsewhere in the Gulf" as well as "along hundreds of miles of coastline." Mak Saito, an Associate Scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts indicated that such an amount of oil "may alter the chemistry of the sea, with unforeseeable results."[262] Samantha Joye of the University of Georgia indicated that the oil could harm fish directly, and microbes used to consume the oil would also reduce oxygen levels in the water.[263] According to Joye, the ecosystem could require years or even decades to recover, as previous spills have done.[264] Oceanographer John Kessler estimated that the crude gushing from the well contained approximately 40% methane by weight, compared to about 5% found in typical oil deposits.[265] Methane could potentially suffocate marine life and create dead zones where oxygen is depleted.[265] Also oceanographer Dr. Ian MacDonald at Florida State University believes that the natural gas dissolving below the surface has the potential to reduce the Gulf oxygen levels and emit benzene and other toxic compounds.[73][266] In early July, researchers discovered two new previously unidentified species of bottom-dwelling pancake batfish of the Halieutichthys genus, in the area affected by the oil spill.[267] Damage to the ocean floor is yet unknown.[236] In particular was the Louisiana pancake batfish, whose range is entirely contained within the area affected by the spill.[268]

In late July 2010, Tulane University scientists found signs of an oil-and-dispersant mix under the shells of tiny blue crab larvae in the Gulf, indicating that the use of dispersants had broken the oil into droplets small enough to easily enter the food chain. Marine biologists from the University of Southern Mississippi's Gulf Coast Research Laboratory found "orange blobs" under the shells of crab larvae "in almost all" of the larvae they collected from over 300 miles (480 km) of coastline stretching from Grand Isle, Louisiana, to Pensacola, Florida.[254]

On September 29, 2010, Oregon State University researchers announced the oil spill waters contain carcinogens. The team had found sharply heightened levels of chemicals in the waters off the coast of Louisiana in August, the last sampling date, even after BP successfully capped its well in mid-July. Near Grand Isle, Louisiana, the team discovered that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons or PAHs, which are often linked to oil spills and include carcinogens and chemicals that pose various risks to human health, remained at levels 40 times higher than before the oil spill. Researchers said the compounds may enter the food chain through organisms like plankton or fish. The PAH chemicals are most concentrated in the area near the Louisiana Coast, but levels have also jumped 2 to 3 fold in other spill-affected areas off Alabama, Mississippi and Florida. As of August, PAH levels remained near those discovered while the oil spill was still flowing heavily.[269] Kim Anderson, an OSU professor of environmental and molecular toxicology, said that based on the findings of other researchers, she suspects that the abundant use of dispersants by BP increased the bioavailability of the PAHs in this case. "There was a huge increase of PAHs that are bio-available to the organisms – and that means they can essentially be uptaken by organisms throughout the food chain." Anderson added that exactly how many of these toxic compounds ended up in the food chain was beyond her area of research.[270]

On October 22, 2010, it was reported that miles-long strings of weathered oil had been sighted moving toward marshes on the Mississippi River delta. Hundreds of thousands of migrating ducks and geese spend the winter in this delta.[271]

Researchers reported in early November 2010 that toxic chemicals at levels high enough to kill sea animals extended deep underwater soon after the BP oil spill. Terry Wade of Texas A&M University, Steven Lohrenz of the University of Southern Mississippi and Stennis Space Center found evidence of the chemicals as deep as 3,300 feet (1,000 m) and as far away as 8 miles (13 km) in May, and say the spread likely worsened as more oil spilled. The chemicals (PAHs), they said, can kill animals right away in high enough concentrations and can cause cancer over time. "From the time that these observations were made, there was an extensive release of additional oil and dispersants at the site. Therefore, the effects on the deep sea ecosystem may be considerably more severe than supported by the observations reported here," the researchers wrote in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. They added that PAHs include a group of compounds, and different types were at different depths, and said "It is possible they dissipate quickly, but no one has yet showed this".[272]

In November 2010, federally funded scientists found damage to deep sea coral several miles from BP's Macondo well. While tests are needed to verify that the coral died from the well, expedition leader Charles Fisher, a biologist with Penn State University, said, "There is an abundance of circumstantial data that suggests that what happened is related to the recent oil spill." According to the Associated Press, this discovery indicated that the spill's ecological consequences may be greater than what officials have said. Previous federal teams have stated that they found no damage on the ocean floor.[273] "We have never seen anything like this," Fisher added. "The visual data for recent and ongoing death are crystal clear and consistent over at least 30 colonies; the site is close to the Deepwater Horizon; the research site is at the right depth and direction to have been impacted by a deep-water plume, based on NOAA models and empirical data; and the impact was detected only a few months after the spill was contained."[274]

A Coast Guard report released on December 17, 2010, said that little oil remained on the sea floor except within a mile and a half of the well. The report said that since August 3, only 1% of water and sediment samples had pollution above EPA-recommended limits. Charlie Henry of NOAA warned even small amounts of oil could cause "latent, long-term chronic effects". And Ian R. MacDonald of Florida State University said even where the government claimed to find little oil, "We went to the same place and saw a lot of oil. In our samples, we found abundant dead animals."[275]

In February 2011, the first birthing season for dolphins since the spill, the director of the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport reported that dead baby dolphins were washing up along the Mississippi and Alabama shorelines at about 10 times the normal number for the first two months of the year. "For some reason, they’ve started aborting or they were dead before they were born; the average is one or two a month. This year we have 17 and February isn’t even over yet.” It is not yet certain if the deaths are related to the oil spill.[276]

From mid-January to late March 2011, scientists counted almost 200 dead dolphins in the Gulf, with another 90 in 2010. After investigating the deaths, NOAA put a gag order on the results, saying that the research is part of a criminal investigation of the oil spill. Numerous independent scientists said they have been "personally rebuked by federal officials for speaking out of turn to the media about efforts to determine the cause" of the deaths.[277] A study published in the journal Conservation Letters[278] showed the actual number of mammal deaths due to the spill may be as much as 50 times higher than the number of recovered carcasses. "The Deepwater oil spill was the largest in US history, however, the recorded impact on wildlife was relatively low, leading to suggestions that the environmental damage of the disaster was actually modest. This is because reports have implied that the number of carcasses recovered... equals the number of animals killed by the spill." said Rob Williams from the University of British Columbia.[279]

In April 2011, one year from the onset of the spill, scientists confirmed that they had discovered oil on dead dolphins found along the Gulf Coast. Fifteen of the 406 dolphins that had washed ashore in the last 14 months had oil on their bodies; the oil found on eight of them was linked to the April 2010 BP oil spill. A NOAA spokesperson stated,"It is significant that even a year after the oil spill we are finding oil on the dolphins, the latest just two weeks ago."[280]


June 21, 2010 National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration map of the Gulf of Mexico showing the areas closed to fishing.
As of June 21, 2010, the area closed to fishing encompassed 86,985 square miles (225,290 km²), or about 36% of Gulf of Mexico federal waters.

In BP's Initial Exploration Plan, dated March 10, 2009, it said that "it is unlikely that an accidental spill would occur" and "no adverse activities are anticipated" to fisheries or fish habitat.[49] On April 29, 2010, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal declared a state of emergency in the state after weather forecasts predicted the oil slick would reach the Louisiana coast.[281] An emergency shrimping season was opened on April 29 so that a catch could be brought in before the oil advanced too far.[282] By April 30, the Coast Guard received reports that oil had begun washing up to wildlife refuges and seafood grounds on the Louisiana Gulf Coast.[283] On May 22, The Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board stated said 60 to 70% of oyster and blue crab harvesting areas and 70 to 80% of fin-fisheries remained open.[284] The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals closed an additional ten oyster beds on May 23, just south of Lafayette, Louisiana, citing confirmed reports of oil along the state's western coast.[285]

On May 2, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration closed commercial and recreational fishing in affected federal waters between the mouth of the Mississippi River and Pensacola Bay. The closure initially incorporated 6,814 square miles (17,650 km²).[286][287] By June 21, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration had increased the area under closure over a dozen times, encompassing by that date 86,985 square miles (225,290 km²), or approximately 36% of Federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico, and extending along the coast from Atchafalaya Bay, Louisiana to Panama City, Florida.[288][289] On May 24, the federal government declared a fisheries disaster for the states of Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana.[290] Initial cost estimates to the fishing industry were $2.5 billion.[283]

On June 23, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ended its fishing ban in 8,000 square miles (21,000 km²), leaving 78,597 square miles (203,570 km²) with no fishing allowed,[291] or about one-third of the Gulf. The continued fishing ban helps assure the safety of seafood, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration inspectors have determined that as of July 9, Kevin Griffis of the Commerce Department said, only one seafood sample out of 400 tested did not pass, though even that one did not include "concerning levels of contaminants".[292] On August 10, Jane Lubchenco of NOAA said no one had seen oil in a 8,000 square miles (21,000 km2) area east of Pensacola since July 3, so the fishing ban in that area was being lifted.[293]

On August 31, a Boston lab hired by the United Commercial Fishermen's Association to analyze coastal fishing waters said it found dispersant in a seafood sample taken near Biloxi, Miss., almost a month after BP said it had stopped using the chemical.[294]

According to the European Space Agency, the agency's satellite data was used by the Ocean Foundation to conclude that 20% of the juvenile bluefin tuna were killed by oil in the gulf's most important spawning area. The foundation combined satellite data showing the oil spill extent each week with data on weekly tuna spawning to make their conclusion. The agency also said that the loss of juvenile tuna was significant due to the 82% decline of the tuna's spawning stock in the western Atlantic during the 30 years before the oil spill.[295]

The waters had been reopened to fishing on November 15, 2010,[296] but on November 24 NOAA re-closed 4,200 square miles (11,000 km²) area to shrimping.[297] A Florida TV station sent frozen Gulf shrimp to be tested for petroleum by-products after recent reports showed scientists disagreed on whether it is safe to eat after the oil spill.[298] A private lab found levels of Anthracene, a toxic hydrocarbon and a by-product of petroleum, at twice the levels the FDA finds acceptable.[299][300] On April 20, NOAA reopened 1,041 square miles (2,700 km2) of Gulf waters immediately surrounding the Deepwater Horizon wellhead to commercial and recreational fishing of fish, oysters, crabs and shrimp after testing results found that 99 percent of samples contained no detectable dispersant residues or oil-related compounds, and the few samples that did contain residues showed levels more than 1000 times lower than FDA levels of concern. This is the twelfth and final reopening in federal waters since July 22, and opens all the formerly closed areas in Federal waters.[301]

In July 2011 BP released a report[302] claiming that the economy had recovered and there was no reason to believe that anyone would suffer future losses from the spill, with the limited exception of oyster harvesters. However, Bruce Guerra, a crab fisherman in Louisiana for 25 years, said that since the BP oil spill crabbers are trapping 75 percent fewer crabs and that "crabs have been coming up dead, discolored, or riddled with holes since last year's spill". Others in the fishing industry say it could take years to fully realize the spill's effects. "The problem is right when they used the dispersants, that's when the tuna came to the Gulf to spawn," said Cheril Carey, a national sales representative for a Louisiana company specializing in yellow fin tuna. "It takes a tuna five to 15 years to mature. So although we may have fish now, we may not have them in five to 15 years."[303]


Although many people cancelled their vacations due to the spill, hotels close to the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama reported dramatic increases in business during the first half of May 2010. However, the increase was likely due to the influx of people who had come to work with oil removal efforts. Jim Hutchinson, assistant secretary for the Louisiana Office of Tourism, called the occupancy numbers misleading, but not surprising. "Because of the oil slick, the hotels are completely full of people dealing with that problem," he said. "They're certainly not coming here as tourists. People aren't sport fishing, they aren't buying fuel at the marinas, they aren't staying at the little hotels on the coast and eating at the restaurants."[304]

On May 25, BP gave Florida $25 million to promote the beaches where the oil had not reached, and the company planned $15 million each for Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi. The Bay Area Tourist Development Council bought digital billboards showing recent photos from the gulf coast beaches as far north as Nashville, Tennessee and Atlanta. Along with assurances that the beaches were so far unaffected, hotels cut rates and offered deals such as free golf. Also, cancellation policies were changed, and refunds were promised to those where oil may have arrived. However, revenues remained below 2009 levels.[304][305]

The U.S. Travel Association estimated that the economic impact of the oil spill on tourism across the Gulf Coast over a three-year period could exceed approximately $23 billion, in a region that supports over 400,000 travel industry jobs generating $34 billion in revenue annually.[306][307]

On November 1, BP announced plans to spend $78 million to help Louisiana tourism and test and advertise seafood.[308]

Other economic consequences

On July 5, 2010, BP reported that its own expenditures on the oil spill had reached $3.12 billion, including the cost of the spill response, containment, relief well drilling, grants to the Gulf states, claims paid, and federal costs.[309] The United States Oil Pollution Act of 1990 limits BP's liability for non-cleanup costs to $75 million unless gross negligence is proven.[310] BP has said it would pay for all cleanup and remediation regardless of the statutory liability cap. Nevertheless, some Democratic lawmakers sought to pass legislation that would increase the liability limit to $10 billion.[311][312] Analysts for Swiss Re have estimated that the total insured losses from the accident could reach $3.5 billion. According to UBS, final losses could be $12 billion.[313] According to Willis Group Holdings, total losses could amount to $30 billion, of which estimated total claims to the market from the disaster, including control of well, re-drilling, third-party liability and seepage and pollution costs, could exceed $1.2 billion.[314]

On June 25, BP's market value reached a 1-year low. The company's total value lost since April 20 was $105 billion. Investors saw their holdings in BP shrink to $27.02, a nearly 54% loss of value in 2010.[315] A month later, the company's loss in market value totalled $60 billion, a 35% decline since the explosion. At that time, BP reported a second-quarter loss of $17 billion, its first loss in 18 years. This included a one-time $32.2 billion charge, including $20 billion for the fund created for reparations and $2.9 billion in actual costs.[316]

BP announced that it was setting up a new unit to oversee management of the oil spill and its aftermath, to be headed by former TNK-BP chief executive Robert Dudley,[317] who a month later was named CEO of BP.[316]

On October 1, BP pledged as collateral all royalties from the Thunder Horse, Atlantis, Mad Dog, Great White, Mars, Ursa, and Na Kika fields in the Gulf of Mexico. At that time, BP also said that it had spent $11.2 billion, while the company's London Stock Exchange price reached 439.75 pence, the highest point since May 28.[318]

By the end of September, BP reported that it had spent $11.2 billion. Third-quarter profit of $1.79 billion (compared to $5.3 billion in 2009) showed, however, that BP continued to do well and should be able to pay total costs estimated at $40 billion.[308]

BP gas stations, the majority of which the company does not own, reported sales off between 10 and 40% due to backlash against the company. Some BP station owners that lost sales said the name should change back to Amoco, while others said after all the effort that went into promoting BP, such a move would be a gamble, and the company should work to restore its image.[319]

Local officials in Louisiana expressed concern that the offshore drilling moratorium imposed in response to the spill would further harm the economies of coastal communities.[320] In a 2010 news story, The Christian Science Monitor reported, "The oil industry employs about 58,000 Louisiana residents and has created another 260,000 oil-related jobs, accounting for about 17% of all Louisiana jobs."[320] BP agreed to allocate $100 million for payments to offshore oil workers who were unemployed due to the six-month moratorium on drilling in the deep-water Gulf of Mexico.[143]

The real estate prices and a number of transactions in the Gulf of Mexico area decreased significantly during the period of the oil spill. As a result, area officials wanted the state legislature to allow property tax to be paid based on current market value, which according to State Rep. Dave Murzin could mean millions of dollars in losses for each county affected.[321]

The Organization for International Investment, a Washington-based advocate for overseas investment into the U.S., warned in early July that the political rhetoric surrounding the disaster was potentially damaging the reputation of all British companies with operations in the U.S.[322] and sparked a wave of U.S. protectionism that restricted British firms from winning government contracts, making political donations and lobbying.[323]


By May 26 of 2010, over 130 lawsuits relating to the spill had been filed[313] against one or more of BP, Transocean, Cameron International Corporation, and Halliburton Energy Services,[324] although it is considered likely by observers that these will be combined into one court as a multidistrict litigation.[324] By June 17 over 220 lawsuits were filed against BP alone.[325] Because the spill has been largely lingering offshore, the plaintiffs who can claim damages so far are mostly out-of-work fishers and tourist resorts that are receiving cancellations.[326] The oil company says 23,000 individual claims have already been filed, of which 9,000 have so far been settled.[313] BP and Transocean want the cases to be heard in Houston, seen as friendly to the oil business. Plaintiffs have variously requested the case be heard in Louisiana, Mississippi or Florida.[326] Five New Orleans judges have recused themselves from hearing oil spill cases because of stock ownership in companies involved or other conflicts of interest.[327] BP has retained law firm Kirkland & Ellis to defend most of the lawsuits arising from the oil spill.[328]

On April 21, 2011, BP issued $40bn worth of lawsuits against rig owner Transocean, cementer Halliburton and blowout preventer manufacturer Cameron. The oil firm alleged failed safety systems and irresponsible behaviour of contractors had led to the explosion, including claims that Halliburton failed to properly use modelling software to analyze safe drilling conditions.[329] The firms deny the allegations.

Health consequences

On May 29, 2010, ten oil spill clean-up workers had been admitted to West Jefferson Medical Center in Marrero, Louisiana. All but two had been hospitalized suffering from symptoms emergency room doctors diagnosed as dehydration. At a press briefing about the May 26 medical evacuation of seven crewmembers from Vessels of Opportunity working in the Breton Sound area, Coast Guard Captain Meredith Austin, Unified Command Deputy Incident Commander in Houma, LA, said that air monitoring done before beginning work showed no volatile organic compounds above limits of concern. No respiratory protection was issued, said Austin "because air ratings were taken and there were no values found to be at an unsafe level, prior to us sending them in there."[330]

On June 15, Marylee Orr, Executive Director for Louisiana Environmental Action Network (LEAN),[331] said on MSNBC's Countdown with Keith Olbermann that people along the Gulf Coast were getting very sick, with symptoms of dizziness, vomiting, nausea, headaches, and chest pains, not only from the first responders to the crisis, but residents living along the coast as well. LEAN's director reported that BP had threatened to fire their workers if they used respirators distributed by LEAN, though health and safety officials had not required their use, as they may exacerbate risks of heat exhaustion.[332][333] By June 21, 143 oil spill exposure cases had been reported to the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) since the crisis began; 108 of those cases involved workers in the oil spill clean-up efforts, while thirty-five were reported by the general public.[334]

The Institute of Medicine of the U. S. National Academies held a workshop to assess known health effects of this and previous oil spills and to coordinate epidemiological monitoring and ongoing medical research. The Louisiana state health officer Jimmy Guidry stated that need as: “This is more than a spill. This is ongoing leakage of a chemical, and adding chemicals to stop the chemicals. We're feeling like we're in a research lab."[335][336] On the second day of the meeting the suicide of William Allen Kruse, a charter boat captain working as a BP clean-up worker,[337] intensified previous expert commentary on the current and likely long-term mental health effects of the ongoing crisis. David Abramson, director of research for Columbia's National Center for Disaster Preparedness, noted the increased risk of mental disorders and stress-related health problems.[338][339] On August 10, the Institute of Medicine released a Workshop Summary: Assessing the Effects of the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill on Human Health.

Chemicals from the oil and dispersant are believed to be the cause of illness reported by people who live along the Gulf of Mexico. According to chemist Bob Naman, the addition of dispersants created an even more toxic substance when mixed with crude oil. According to Naman, poly-aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are making people sick. PAHs contain compounds that have been identified as carcinogenic, mutagenic, and teratogenic. "The dispersants are being added to the water and are causing chemical compounds to become water soluble, which is then given off into the air, so it is coming down as rain, in addition to being in the water and beaches of these areas of the Gulf," Naman said, and added "I’m scared of what I'm finding. These cyclic compounds intermingle with the Corexit dispersant and generate other cyclic compounds that aren't good. Many have double bonds, and many are on the EPA's danger list. This is an unprecedented environmental catastrophe." Dr. Riki Ott has been working with oil-spill related illness since the Exxon Valdez. She is working in the Gulf and says: "People are already dying from this… I’m dealing with three autopsies' right now. I don’t think we’ll have to wait years to see the effects like we did in Alaska, people are dropping dead now. I know two people who are down to 4.75 per cent of their lung capacity, their heart has enlarged to make up for that, and their esophagus is disintegrating, and one of them is a 16-year-old boy who went swimming in the Gulf."[340][341] According to Mississippi Riverkeeper of the Waterkeeper Alliance, blood samples from eight individuals from Florida (Pensacola) and Alabama, male and female, residents and BP cleanup workers “were analyzed for volatile solvents and all came back with Ethylbenzene and m,p-Xylene in excess of 95th percentile values of 0.11 ppb for ethylbenzene and 0.34 ppb for m,p-Xylene.” The highest concentration value was four times the 95th percentile. “The blood of all three females and five males had chemicals that are found in the BP crude oil”, the report went on to say.[342]

In March 2011, it was reported that data collected by NASA shows that the toxic compounds released from the spill became airborne and significant quantities were brought onshore by precipitation, thereby exposing coastal populations to chemical poisoning and perhaps explaining why there were numerous reports by people living along the Gulf Coast that it was raining oil and dispersant during the summer months.[243]

U.S. and Canadian offshore drilling policies

After the Deepwater Horizon explosion, a six-month offshore drilling (below 500 feet (150 m) of water) moratorium was enforced by the United States Department of the Interior.[343] Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar ordered immediate inspections of all deep-water operations in the Gulf of Mexico. An Outer Continental Shelf safety review board within the Department of the Interior is to provide recommendations for conducting drilling activities in the Gulf.[158] The moratorium suspended work on 33 rigs.[343] It was challenged by several drilling and oil services companies. On June 22, a United States federal judge on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana Martin Leach-Cross Feldman when ruling in the case Hornbeck Offshore Services LLC v. Salazar, lifted the moratorium finding it too broad, arbitrary and not adequately justified.[343] The Department of Justice appealed to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, which granted the request for an expedited hearing. A three judge panel is scheduled to hear oral arguments on July 8.[344][345]

U.S. Oil Production and Imports 1920 to 2005.

On June 30, Salazar said that "he is working very hard to finalize a new offshore drilling moratorium".[346] Michael Bromwich, the head of the newly created Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, said that a record of "bad performance, deadly performance" by an oil company should be considered "a relevant factor" for the government when it decides if that company should be awarded future drilling leases.[346] Representative George Miller plans to introduce to the energy reform bill under consideration in the United States House of Representatives that a company's safety record should factor into leasing decisions. By this amendment he wants to ban BP from leasing any additional offshore area for seven years because of "extensive record of serious worker safety and environmental violations".[347]

On April 28, the National Energy Board of Canada, which regulates offshore drilling in the Canadian Arctic and along the British Columbia Coast, issued a letter to oil companies asking them to explain their argument against safety rules which require same-season relief wells.[348] Five days later, the Canadian Minister of the Environment Jim Prentice said the government would not approve a decision to relax safety or environment regulations for large energy projects.[349] On May 3 California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger withdrew his support for a proposed plan to allow expanded offshore drilling projects in California.[350][351] On July 8, Florida Governor Charlie Crist called for a special session of the state legislature to draft an amendment to the state constitution banning offshore drilling in state waters, which the legislature rejected on July 20.[352][353]

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico accounts for 23.5% of U.S. oil production.[354] The chief argument in the U.S. offshore drilling debate has been to make the United States less dependent on imported oil.[355][356] American dependence on imports grew from 24% in 1970[357] to 66% in 2008.[358]

Spill response fund

BP initially promised to compensate all those affected. Tony Hayward stated, "We are taking full responsibility for the spill and we will clean it up and where people can present legitimate claims for damages we will honour them. We are going to be very, very aggressive in all of that."[359]

On June 16, after meeting with President Obama, BP executives agreed to create a $20 billion spill response fund.[143][360][361] BP has said it will pay $3 billion in third quarter of 2010 and $2 billion in fourth quarter into the fund followed by a payment of $1.25 billion per quarter until it reaches $20 billion. In the interim, BP posts its US assets worth $20 billion as bond. The amount of this fund is not a cap on BP's liabilities. For the fund's payments, BP will cut its capital spending budget, sell $10 billion in assets, and drop its dividend.[143][362] The fund will be administered by Kenneth Feinberg.[143][360][361] One aim of the fund will be to minimize lawsuits against the company.[363] According to BP's officials, the fund can be used for natural resource damages, state and local response costs and individual compensation but cannot be used for fines or penalties.[143]

After provisions of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Trust were released August 11, it was revealed that the BP Spill Fund may be backed by future drilling revenue, using BP's production as collateral.[364]

The Gulf Coast Claims Facility began accepting claims on August 23. Kenneth Feinberg, the man in charge of the $20 billion fund, has confirmed that BP is paying his salary, but questioned who else should pay it. Feinberg has been asked repeatedly to reveal his salary. In late July, he stated that he will disclose the salary BP is paying him, after initially declining to do so.[365] In mid-August, he said that he would disclose the amount "probably next month" but insists that he is not beholden to BP.[366] However, in early October, he had not yet divulged the information as promised, and when asked, he declined to say how much he is being paid, only that it is a flat fee "totally unrelated" to the size of the fund and amounts paid.[367] On October 8, it was revealed that Feinberg and his law firm have been paid more than $2.5 million from mid-June to October 1.[368]

Feinberg said almost 19,000 claims were submitted in the first week. Of those, roughly 1,200 claims were compensated, totaling about six million dollars, the remainder "lacked proper paperwork".[369] Feinberg pointed out that those closest to the spill area were the most likely to receive compensation. Under the new claims facility, claimants can receive between one and six months' compensation without waiving their right to sue; only those who file for and receive a lump-sum payment later in the year will waive their right to litigate.[370] BP had already paid out $375 million, but those who had already filed claims would need to submit a new form.[371] Feinberg stated, "If I haven't found you eligible, no court will find you eligible." Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum disputed Feinberg's statement in a letter.[372]

As of 8 September 2010 (2010 -09-08), 50,000 claims, 44,000 of those for lost income, had been filed. Over 10,000 claims had been paid, totaling nearly $80 million.[373] By September 17, about 15,000 claims remained unpaid. The claims were from individuals and businesses that had been fully documented and had already received loss payments from BP. Feinberg acknowledged that he had no excuse for the delay.[374]

By late September, Floridians and businesses criticized the claims process, claiming it has gotten worse under Feinberg's leadership, some saying the president and BP "should dump Feinberg if he doesn't get his act together soon".[375] The Obama Administration responded to criticism from Florida officials, including Gov. Charlie Crist and CFO Alex Sink, with a stern letter to Feinberg, saying the present pace of claims is "unacceptable" and directing his office to make whatever changes necessary to move things along. "The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill has disrupted the lives of thousands upon thousands of individuals, often cutting off the income on which they depend. Many of these individuals and businesses simply do not have the resources to get by while they await processing by the GCCF" associate U.S. Attorney General Thomas Perrelli wrote.[376] One family in Louisiana has been waiting for a month on emergency funds from Feinberg's Gulf Coast Claims Fund, and says for them it is urgent. "Bills aren't paid, they take my car, they take my insurance, they take my house, and then I can't get him back and forth to dialysis," claims the wife of the former owner of "Lafourche Seafood".[377]

On September 25, Feinberg responded to the complaints in a news release. "Over the past few weeks, I have heard from the people of the Gulf, elected officials, and others that payments remain too slow and not generous enough," Feinberg said. "I am implementing new procedures that will make this program more efficient, more accelerated and more generous." In less than five weeks, the dedicated $20 billion fund that BP set up has paid out over $400 million to more than 30,000 claimants. Funds allocated so far equal 2% of the total amount that BP agreed to set aside.[378] Feinberg has denied about 2,000 claims, another 20,000 applications were returned for more financial documentation, and about 15,000 more claims await review. Feinberg has said he's processing claims at a rate of 1,500 a day.[379]

By early October, denied claims dropped from 528 to 116, as checks were cut and mailed to businesses that were initially told they would get no help. Along with those still waiting for money, dozens of people say they have received small fractions of the compensation they requested.[367]

By November, BP said it had sent $1.7 billion in checks.[308] About 92,000 claimants had been paid or approved for payment as of 30 October 2010 (2010 -10-30). The claims facility declined to reveal the total amount requested by the nearly 315,000 people who have now filed. Denied claims rose dramatically in October; some 20,000 people had been told they have no right to emergency compensation, compared to about 125 denials at the end of September. Others say they are getting mere fractions of what they've lost, while still others received large checks and full payments.[380]

In a letter sent November 20 by the Department of Justice, Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli told Kenneth Feinberg that transparency is needed in the claims process so victims can see they're being treated fairly. The DOJ also expressed concerns about the pace of the pay-out process as the interim and final claims begin.[381][382]

Feinberg had said claimants would have to surrender their right to sue BP to receive payments beyond emergency disbursements. The deadline to apply for emergency payments expired November 23. But after Gulf residents complained that the emergency payments were so small that they felt pushed into a hurried settlement to get more money, Feinberg made a concession. Under the new rules (beginning November 24 and lasting until August 23, 2013), businesses and individuals may request compensation once a quarter while they decide whether to permanently settle their claim. Still, the claims process has its critics. Alabama Rep. Jo Bonner asked the Justice Department to investigate the claims facility and to assume direct oversight of the process, saying he had no more trust in the new process than he had in the emergency-payment program. Feinberg had said he would hire his own adjusters, but according to Rep. Bonner, he is still using the same ones as when BP administered the fund. A spokeswoman for Feinberg said the hiring process of new adjusters was under way.[383]

According to BP's law firm, Feinberg's law firm received a total of $3.3 million from BP as of early November. The law firm was paid $850,000 a month since June 2010, and payment of this fee will continue until the end of the year; afterwards, the contract will be reviewed.[384]

In March 2011, Feinberg's law firm received an increase in the monthly wage from BP. Compensation rose from $850,000 to $1.25 million.[385]

Feinberg estimates that about $6 billion of the fund will be paid out in claims, including government claims and cleanup costs. He plans to return the remaining $14 billion to BP once all the settlements are paid out by August 2013.[386]

In July 2011, Mississippi's attorney general Jim Hood announced he is suing Feinberg to get access to claims filed by coastal residents, saying he's "seeking to make the process more transparent so people will know if Feinberg is looking out for the best interests of oil spill victims or BP". Hood has stated he believes Feinberg's operation is "intentionally delaying and denying legitimate claims". Feinberg has been criticized by others about the amount and speed of payments as well as a lack of transparency.[387] Also in July, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that an independent audit will be performed on the $20 billion fund set up to compensate victims of the BP oil spill. To July 2011, the fund has paid $4.7 billion to 198,475 claimants. The total number who have filed claims stands at 522,506, many with multiple claims. In all, the fund has nearly 1 million claims and continues to receive thousands of claims each week.[32]

An independent audit of the GCCF won Senate approval October 21, 2011. The audit is seen as a means of assuring claimants of efficiency and transparency in the BP claims process.[388]


Reactions to the oil spill, from various officials and interested parties, ranged from blame and outrage at the damage caused by the spill, and spills in the past, to calls for greater accountability on the part of the U.S. government and BP, including new legislation dealing with preventative security and cleanup improvements.


On April 22, the United States Coast Guard and the Minerals Management Service launched an investigation of the possible causes of the explosion.[40] On May 11 the Obama administration requested the National Academy of Engineering conduct an independent technical investigation to determine the root causes of the disaster so that corrective steps could be taken to address the mechanical failures underlying the accident.[389] On May 22 President Obama announced that he had issued Executive Order 13543 establishing the bipartisan National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling, with former Florida Governor and Senator Bob Graham and former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator William K. Reilly serving as co-chairs. The purpose of the commission is to "consider the root causes of the disaster and offer options on safety and environmental precautions."[390][391] On June 1, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that he has opened an investigation of the oil spill.[392] According to Holder, the Justice Department is interviewing witnesses as part of a criminal and civil investigation. Besides BP, the investigation could apply to other companies involved in the drilling of the damaged well.[393]

The United States House Committee on Energy and Commerce has conducted a number of hearings. On June 17, Tony Hayward testified before the Committee.[394] The heads of Anadarko and Mitsui's exploration unit will testify before the Committee July 22.[395] In a statement made in June the Committee noted that in a number of cases leading up to the explosion, BP appears to have chosen riskier procedures to save time or money, sometimes against the advice of its staff or contractors.[396]

On April 30, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce asked Halliburton to brief it as well as provide any documents it might have related to its work on the Macondo well.[158] Attention has focused on the cementing procedure and the blowout preventer, which failed to fully engage.[397] A number of significant problems have been identified with the blowout preventer: There was a leak in the hydraulic system that provides power to the shear rams. The underwater control panel had been disconnected from the pipe ram, and instead connected to a test ram. The blowout preventer schematic drawings, provided by Transocean to BP, do not correspond to the structure that is on the ocean bottom. The shear rams are not designed to function on the joints where the drill pipes are screwed together or on tools that are passed through the blowout preventer during well construction. The explosion may have severed the communication line between the rig and the sub-surface blowout preventer control unit such that the blowout preventer would have never received the instruction to engage. Before the backup dead man's switch could engage, communications, power and hydraulic lines must all be severed, but it is possible hydraulic lines were intact after the explosion. Of the two control pods for the deadman switch, the one that has been inspected so far had a dead battery.[398] Employee Tyrone Benton told the BBC on June 21 that a leak was spotted on a crucial piece of equipment in the oil rig's blowout preventer weeks before the accident, and that Transocean and BP were emailed about it.[399]

According to the testimony of Doug Brown, the chief mechanic on the Deepwater Horizon, on May 26 at the joint U.S. Coast Guard and Minerals Management Service hearing, a BP representative overruled Transocean employees and insisted on displacing protective drilling mud with seawater just hours before the explosion.[400] One of the BP representatives on the board responsible for making the final decision, Robert Kaluza, refused to testify on the Fifth Amendment grounds that he might incriminate himself; Donald Vidrine, another BP representative, cited medical reasons for his inability to testify, as did James Mansfield, Transocean's assistant marine engineer on board.[401][402][403]

In a June 18 statement, Jim Hackett, the CEO of Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, said research "indicates BP operated unsafely and failed to monitor and react to several critical warning signs during the drilling. ... BP's behavior and actions likely represent gross negligence or willful misconduct."[404] BP responded by strongly disagreeing with the Anadarko statement and said that, despite being contractually liable for sharing clean-up costs, Anadarko is "refusing to accept responsibility for oil spill removal costs and damages".[405] BP has sent Anadarko a bill for $272.2 million; Anadarko is "assessing our contractual remedies".[98]

According to the US Congressional investigation, the rig's blowout preventer, a fail-safe device fitted at the base of the well, built by Cameron International Corporation, had a hydraulic leak and a failed battery, and therefore failed.[406] On August 19, Admiral Thad Allen ordered BP to keep the blowout preventer to be used as evidence in any court actions.[164] On August 25, Harry Thierens, BP's vice president for drilling and completions, told the hearing that he found that the blowout preventer was connected to a test pipe, rather than the one conveying oil to the surface. He said that he was "frankly astonished that this could have happened."[407]

In late August, BP released findings from its own internal probe, which it began immediately after the spill began. BP found that on April 20 managers misread pressure data and gave their approval for rig workers to replace drilling fluid in the well with seawater, which was not heavy enough to prevent gas that had been leaking into the well from firing up the pipe to the rig, causing the explosion. The investigation also questioned why an engineer with BP, the team leader overseeing the project, ignored warnings about weaknesses in cement outside the well which could have prevented the gas from escaping. The conclusion was that BP was partly to blame, as was Transocean, which owned the Deepwater Horizon oil rig.[31]

On September 8, BP released a 193-page report on its web site. The report says BP employees and those of Transocean did not correctly interpret a pressure test, and both companies neglected signs such as a pipe called a riser[clarification needed] losing fluid. It also says that while BP did not listen to recommendations by Halliburton for more centralizers, the lack of centralizers probably did not affect the cement. The blowout preventer, removed on September 4, had not reached a NASA facility in time for it to be part of the report. Transocean, responding to the report, blamed "BP's fatally flawed well design."[408]

On November 8, the inquiry by the Oil Spill Commission revealed its findings that BP had not sacrificed safety in attempts to make money, but that some decisions had increased risks on the rig.[409] However, the panel said a day later that there had been "a rush to completion" on the well, criticizing poor management decisions. "There was not a culture of safety on that rig," co-chair Bill Reilly said.[410] One of the decisions met with tough questions was that BP refuted[clarification needed] the findings of advanced modelling software that had ascertained over three times as many centralizers were needed on the rig. It also decided not to rerun the software when it stuck with only six centralizers, and ignored or misread warnings from other key tests, the panel said.[41]

On November 16, an independent 15-member committee[who?] released a report stating BP and others, including federal regulators, ignored "near misses". University of Michigan engineering practice professor and committee chairman Donald Winter that sealing the well continued "despite several indications of potential hazard". For example, tests showed the cement was not strong enough to prevent oil and gas from escaping. Also, BP lost drilling materials in the hole.[411] According to Donald Winter, the panel of investigators could not pin the explosion aboard the rig on a single decision made by BP, or anyone else, they found that the companies' focus on speed over safety, given that the well was behind schedule costing BP $1.5 million a day-helped lead to the accident. As Donald Winter told the New York Times, "A large number of decisions were made that were highly questionable and potentially contributed to the blowout of the Macondo well... Virtually all were made in favor of approaches which were shorter in time and lower in cost. That gives us concern that there was not proper consideration of the tradeoffs between cost and schedule and risk and safety."[412] An unused Oil Spill Commission slide [413] obtained by Greenwire, outlines 11 decisions that BP and its contractors ( Halliburton Co., Transocean Ltd. and MI Swaco) made before the disaster that may have increased risk on the rig. At least nine of the decisions saved time, and the majority were made on shore, mainly by BP.[414]

On December 8, Joe Keith, a senior Halliburton manager, said to the U.S. Coast Guard-Interior Department panel in Houston that he left his post aboard Transocean’s rig to smoke a cigarette on the night of the April disaster in the Gulf. While he was away from his monitors, charts entered into evidence showed that pressure data indicated the well was filling up with explosive natural gas and crude. Halliburton shares immediately fell on the New York Stock Exchange when news of his testimony emerged.[415]

In a December 23 letter, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board asked the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement to discontinue its investigation of the blowout preventer, which began November 16 at a NASA facility near New Orleans, until dealing with conflicts of interest. The board said Transocean and Cameron International, maker of the blowout preventer, had more access than the board did, and that Det Norske Veritas, which led the testing, should be removed or monitored more closely. Transocean said the board's "accusations are totally unfounded."[416]

On March 23, 2011, BOEMRE and the Coast Guard published the forensic examination report prepared by U.S. Det Norske Veritas (DNV) Columbus, the contractor that performed the examination.[417] The report concluded that the primary cause of failure was that the blind shear rams failed fully close and seal due to a portion of drill pipe trapped between the shearing blocks. This happened because the drill pipe elastically buckled within the wellbore due to forces induced on the drill pipe during loss of well control, consequently, drill pipe in process of shearing was deformed outside the shearing blade surfaces, and, consequently, the blind shearing rams were not able to move the entire pipe cross section into the shearing surfaces of the blades. Therefore, oil continued to flow through the drill pipe trapped between the ram block faces and subsequently through the gaps between the ram blocks. Since the pipe buckled when well control was lost, the blind shear rams would have failed to function as planned no matter when they were made active.[418]

In September 2011, the US government published its final investigative report on the accident. In essence, that report states that the main cause was the defective cement job, and Halliburtun, BP and Transocean were, in different ways, responsible for the accident.[33] The report consists of two volumes. Volume I contains the report of the US Coast Guard.[419] That volume states that, although the events leading to the sinking of DEEPWATER HORIZON were set into motion by the failure to prevent a well blowout, the investigation revealed numerous systems deficiencies, and acts and omissions by Transocean and its DEEPWATER HORIZON crew, that had an adverse impact on the ability to prevent or limit the magnitude of the disaster. These included poor maintenance of electrical equipment that may have ignited the explosion, bypassing of gas alarms and automatic shutdown systems that could prevent an explosion, and lack of training of personnel on when and how to shutdown engines and disconnect the MODU from the well to avoid a gas explosion and mitigate the damage from an explosion and fire. These deficiencies indicate that Transocean’s failure to have an effective safety management system and instill a culture that emphasizes and ensures safety contributed to this disaster. This investigation also revealed that the oversight and regulation of DEEPWATER HORIZON by its flag state, the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), was ineffective in preventing this casualty. By delegating all of its inspection activities to “recognized organizations,” without itself conducting on board oversight surveys, the RMI effectively abdicated its vessel inspection responsibilities.

Volume II of the report cited above contains the report of the Bureau of Ocean Energey Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE).[420] That voloume states that a central cause of the blowout was failure of a cement barrier in the production casing string, a high‐strength steel pipe set in a well to ensure well integrity and to allow future production. The failure of the cement barrier allowed hydrocarbons to flow up the wellbore, through the riser and onto the rig, resulting in the blowout. The loss of life and the subsequent pollution of the Gulf of Mexico were the result of poor risk management, last‐minute changes to plans, failure to observe and respond to critical indicators, inadequate well control response, and insufficient emergency bridge response training by companies and individuals responsible for drilling at the Macondo well and for the operation of the drilling platform. BP, as the designated operator under BOEMRE regulations, was ultimately responsible for conducting operations at Macondo in a way that ensured the safety and protection of personnel, equipment, natural resources, and the environment. Transocean, the owner of the Deepwater Horizon, was responsible for conducting safe operations and for protecting personnel onboard. Halliburton, as a contractor to BP, was responsible for conducting the cement job, and, through its subsidiary (Sperry Sun), had certain responsibilities for monitoring the well.

Finding of fault

On January 5, 2011,[421] the White House oil spill commission released a final report detailing faults by the companies that led to the spill.[422] The panel found that BP, Halliburton, and Transocean had attempted to work more cheaply and thus helped to trigger the explosion and ensuing leakage.[423] The report states: "Whether purposeful or not, many of the decisions that BP, Halliburton, and Transocean made that increased the risk of the Macondo blowout clearly saved those companies significant time (and money)."[423][424] BP released a statement in response to this, saying, "Even prior to the conclusion of the commission’s investigation, BP instituted significant changes designed to further strengthen safety and risk management."[425] Transocean, however, blamed BP for making the decisions before the actual explosion occurred and government officials for permitting those decisions.[426] Halliburton stated that it was acting only upon the orders of BP when it injected the cement into the wall of the well.[425][427] Halliburton also blamed the governmental officials and BP. It criticized BP for its failure to run a cement bond log test.[426]

In the report, BP was accused of nine faults.[425][427] One was that it had not used a diagnostic tool to test the strength of the cement.[423] Another was ignoring a pressure test that had failed.[425] Still another was for not plugging the pipe with cement.[423] The study did not, however, place the blame on any one of these events. Rather, it concluded with the following statement blaming the management of Macondo:[425][427]

Better management of decision-making processes within BP and other companies, better communication within and between BP and its contractors and effective training of key engineering and rig personnel would have prevented the Macondo incident.

The panel also noted that the government regulators did not have sufficient knowledge or authority to notice these cost-cutting decisions.[424] The report advises Changing Business as Usual[428]

The record shows that without effective government oversight, the offshore oil and gas industry will not adequately reduce the risk of accidents, nor prepare effectively to respond in emergencies. However, government oversight, alone, cannot reduce those risks to the full extent possible. Government oversight (see Chapter 9) must be accompanied by the oil and gas industry's internal reinvention: sweeping reforms that accomplish no less than a fundamental transformation of its safety culture. Only through such a demonstrated transformation will industry—in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon disaster—truly earn the privilege of access to the nation's energy resources located on federal properties.

As noted above, the US government report issued in September 2011 states Halliburtun, BP and Transocean were are, in different ways, responsible for the accident.[33]

See also


  1. ^ United States Environmental Protection Agency. Deepwater Horizon Response April 2010. Download KML Geographic Data.
  2. ^ Power, Stephen; Gold, Russell; King, Neil Jr. (2010-06-08). "Staffing Levels on Deepwater Horizon Are Questioned". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2010-06-08. : BP had contracted the rig from Transocean, which both owned and operated the rig.
  3. ^ a b c Hoch, Maureen (2010-08-02). "New Estimate Puts Gulf Oil Leak at 205 Million Gallons". PBS NewsHour (MacNeil/Lehrer Productions). Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  4. ^ Burdeau, Cain; Holbrook, Mohr (2010-07-27). "Expert: bp-gulf-oil-spill-68000-square-miles-of.html". SkyTruth. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  5. ^ "The Ongoing Administration-Wide Response to the Deepwater BP Oil Spill". 2010-05-05. Retrieved 2010-05-08. 
  6. ^ White, Stephen (2010-05-03). "BP's oil slickers; Bosses who earn millions claimed they could handle rig explosions". Daily Mirror: p. 14. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  7. ^ Guegel, A.; Wright, A.P.B.; Brenner, N. (2010-05-10). "BP 'army' battles Macondo flow". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-05-21. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ "BP leak the world's worst accidental oil spill". Telegraph. 2010-08-03. Retrieved 2010-08-15. 
  10. ^ Jervis, Rick; Levin, Alan (2010-05-27). "Obama, in Gulf, pledges to push on stopping leak". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-05-27. 
  11. ^ a b c d e Robertson, Campbell; Krauss, Clifford (2010-08-02). "Gulf Spill Is the Largest of Its Kind, Scientists Say". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-08-12. 
  12. ^ Welch, William; Joyner, Chris (2010-05-25). "Memorial Services Honors 11 Dead Oil Rig Workers". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  13. ^ a b "BP begins testing new oil well cap". Al Jazeera. 2010-07-15. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  14. ^ "Blown Out BP Well Finally Killed". WWL-TV. 2010-09-19. Retrieved 2010-09-19. 
  15. ^ Dahr Jamail. "The return of the BP disaster? - Americas". Al Jazeera English. Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  16. ^ Ben Raines, Press-Register. "Scientists: Oil fouling Gulf matches Deepwater Horizon well (photo gallery, video) |". Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  17. ^ Michael DeMocker, The Times-Picayune. "Coast Guard, BP investigating reports of oil at Deepwater Horizon site". Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  18. ^ Mark Schleifstein, The Times-Picayune. "Coast Guard says oil sheen 16 miles northeast of BP well too dispersed to be recovered". Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  19. ^ Tangley, Laura (2010-04-30). "Bird Habitats Threatened by Oil Spill". National Wildlife (National Wildlife Federation). Retrieved 2010-05-03. 
  20. ^ Gulf Oil Slick Endangering Ecology (Flash streaming). CBS Broadcasting. 2010-04-30. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  21. ^ a b Gillis, Justin (2010-05-18). "Giant Plumes of Oil Forming Under the Gulf". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  22. ^ Gutman, Matt; Netter, Sarah (2010-12-03). "Submarine Dive Finds Oil, Dead Sea Life at Bottom of Gulf of Mexico". ABS News. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  23. ^ NOAA Closes 4200 Square Miles to Royal Red Shrimping | UNDATED. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  24. ^ a b Bowermaster, Jon. (2010-11-29) Bowermaster's Adventures – Measuring the extent of oil spillage. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  25. ^ "Foul waters, hard lessons from BP oil spill". CNN. 13 January 2011. 
  26. ^ Dykes, Brett Michael (2011-02-22). "Researchers find thick patches of crude still on Gulf floor". Yahoo News. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  27. ^
  28. ^ Polson, Jim. "BP Oil Still Ashore One Year After End of Gulf Spill". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  29. ^ "2010-2011 Cetacean Unusual Mortality Event in Northern Gulf of Mexico - Office of Protected Resources - NOAA Fisheries". 2011-11-01. Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  30. ^ "Obama oil spill commission's final report blames disaster on cost-cutting by BP and partners". Telegraph. Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  31. ^ a b Daniel Bates (30 August 2010). "BP accepts blame for Gulf of Mexico spill after leaked memo reveals engineer misread pressure reading". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  32. ^ a b "BP Gulf spill compensation fund to be audited". Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  33. ^ a b c Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE)/U.S. Coast Guard Joint Investigation Team (September 14, 2011). "Deepwater Horizon Joint Investigation Team Releases Final Report". U.S. Government. Retrieved 06.10.2011. 
  34. ^ "Transocean Deepwater Horizon specifications". Transocean. Retrieved 2010-04-22. 
  35. ^ "Deepwater Horizon Sinks Offshore Louisiana". RIGZONE Industry News, Stories, Analysis and Editorial. 2010-04-22. 
  36. ^ Reddall, Braden (2010-04-22). "Transocean rig loss's financial impact mulled". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  37. ^ Jervis, Rick (2010-04-21). "At least 11 workers missing after La. oil rig explosion". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  38. ^ "BP confirms that Transocean Ltd issued the following statement today" (Press release). BP. April 21, 2010. Retrieved April 21, 2010. 
  39. ^ "Macondo Prospect, Gulf of Mexico, USA". Net Resources International. 2005-10-20. Retrieved May 9, 2010. 
  40. ^ a b c Brenner, Noah; Guegel, Anthony; Hwee Hwee, Tan; Pitt, Anthea (2010-04-22). "Coast Guard confirms Horizon sinks". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-04-22. 
  41. ^ a b Leo King (12 November 2010). "Deepwater Horizon modelling software showed BP cement conditions unstable". Computerworld UK. Retrieved 12 November 2010. 
  42. ^ "Offshore Field Development Projects: Macondo". Subsea.Org. Retrieved 2010-05-18. 
  43. ^ "Central Gulf of Mexico Planning Area Lease Sale 206 Information". US Minerals Management Service. 2008-08-08. Retrieved 2010-06-06. 
  44. ^ Schwartz, Naoki; Weber, Harry R. (2010-05-01). "Bubble of methane triggered rig blast". Associated Press. Southern California Public Radio. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  45. ^ Kirkham, Chris (2010-04-22). "Rescued oil rig explosion workers arrive to meet families at Kenner hotel". New Orleans Metro Real-Time News. Retrieved 2010-04-22. 
  46. ^ Kaufman, Leslie (2010-04-24). "Search Ends for Missing Oil Rig Workers". The New York Times (The New York Times Company): p. A8. Retrieved 2010-04-24. 
  47. ^ Resnick-Ault, Jessica; Klimasinska, Katarzyna (2010-04-22). "Transocean Oil-Drilling Rig Sinks in Gulf of Mexico as Coast Guard Looks for Survivors". Bloomberg L.P.. Retrieved 2010-04-22. 
  48. ^ "Coast Guard: Oil rig that exploded has sunk". CNN. 2010-04-22. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  49. ^ a b Griffitt, Michelle. "Initial Exploration Plan Mississippi Canyon Block 252 OCS-G 32306" (PDF). BP Exploration and Production (New Orleans, Louisiana: Minerals Management Service). 
  50. ^ Nichols, Bruce (2010-04-23). "Oil spill not growing, search for 11 continues". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  51. ^ a b c d "Oil rig wreck leaks into Gulf of Mexico". Associated Press. CBC News. 2010-04-25. Retrieved 2010-04-25. 
  52. ^ Jervis, Rick (2010-04-23). "Coast Guard: No oil leaking from sunken rig". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  53. ^ Cart, Julie (2010-05-01). "Tiny group has big impact on spill estimates". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  54. ^ Gertz, Emily (2010-04-29). "Gulf oil spill far worse than officials, BP admit, says independent analyst". OnEarth (Natural Resources Defense Council). Retrieved 2010-05-12. 
  55. ^ Talley, Ian (2010-04-30). "Oil may be leaking at rate of 25,000 barrels a day in Gulf". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  56. ^ a b c "US military joins Gulf of Mexico oil spill effort". BBC News. 2010-04-29. Retrieved 2010-04-29. 
  57. ^ Krauss, Clifford; Broder, John; Calmes, Jackie (2010-05-30). "White House Struggles as Criticism on Leak Mounts". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  58. ^ Flow Rate Group Provides Preliminary Best Estimate Of Oil Flowing from BP Oil Well. . Deepwater Horizon Response – Official Site of the Deepwater Horizon Unified Command (Deepwater Horizon Incident – Joint Information Center). 2010-05-27. Retrieved 2010-05-29. 
  59. ^ "Flow Rate Group Provides Preliminary Best Estimate Of Oil Flowing from BP Oil Well" (Press release). U.S. Department of the Interior. 2010-05-27. Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  60. ^ Weisman, Jonathan; Chazan, Guy; Power, Stephen (2010-05-27). "Spill Tops Valdez Disaster". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  61. ^ Bluestein, Greg; Nuckols, Ben (2010-05-27). "Gulf leak eclipses Exxon Valdez as worst US spill". Associated Press. Southern California Public Radio. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  62. ^ CNN Wire Staff (2010-06-15). "Oil estimate raised to 35,000–60,000 barrels a day". CNN. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  63. ^ Gillis, Justin; Fountain, Henry (2010-06-10). "New Estimates Double Rate of Oil That Flowed Into Gulf". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). 
  64. ^ "Admiral Allen, Dr. McNutt Provide Updates on Progress of Scientific Teams Analyzing Flow Rates from BP's Well" (Press release). 2010-06-10. Retrieved 2010-06-11. 
  65. ^ Staff (2010-06-15). "Oil estimate raised to 35,000–60,000 barrels a day". CNN. CNN Wire. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  66. ^ Henry, Ray (2010-06-15). "Scientists up estimate of leaking Gulf oil". Associated Press. MSNBC. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  67. ^ "Document Shows BP Estimates Spill up to 100,000 Bpd". Reuters. 2010-06-20. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  68. ^ BP (2010-05-24). "(Internal BP document of spill estimates)". Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  69. ^ Joel Achenbach and David Fahrenthold (2010-08-02). "Oil well spilled out 4.9 million barrels, new numbers reveal". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  70. ^ Tapper, Jake (2010-05-24). "Today's Qs for O's WH – May 24, '10". ABC News. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  71. ^ Craig, Tiffany (2010-05-24). "Is U.S. interior secretary confident BP knows what it's doing? 'No, not completely'". KENS 5-TV (Belo Corp.). Retrieved May 25, 2010. 
  72. ^ Robertson, Campbell (2010-05-27). "Estimates Suggest Spill Is Biggest in U.S. History". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-05-27. 
  73. ^ a b Polson, Jim (2010-06-16). "BP Gulf Well Gushing as Much as 60,000 Barrels a Day". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  74. ^ Staff (2010-05-30). "Government, BP spar over size of oil leak". CNN Wire. CNN. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  75. ^ a b Staff writer (2010-04-25). "Robot subs trying to stop Gulf oil leak". CBC News. Retrieved 2010-04-25. 
  76. ^ a b c "Gulf Oil Spill, by the Numbers". CBS News (CBS). 2010-04-30. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  77. ^ McGreal, Chris; Macalister, Terry; Gabbatt, Adam (2010-04-29). "Deepwater Horizon oil slick to hit US coast within hours". The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  78. ^ a b "Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill in the Loop Current". ScienceDaily. 2010-05-19. 
  79. ^ "NOAA Observations Indicate a Small Portion of Light Oil Sheen Has Entered the Loop Current". Deepwater Horizon Incident Joint Information Center. 2010-05-19. Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  80. ^ Burdeau, Cain (2010-04-14). "Where's the oil? Much has evaporated". Fox 10. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  81. ^ Aigner, Erin; Burgess, Joe; Carter, Shan; Nurse, Joanne; Park, Haeyoun; Schoenfeld, Amy; Tse, Archie (2010-05-01). "Tracking the Oil Spill – An Interactive Map". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-05-20. 
  82. ^ Gillis, Justin; Robertson, Campbell (July 28, 2010). "Gulf Surface Oil Vanishing Quickly". The New York Times. 
  83. ^ Bolstad, Erika (2010-08-04). "Science world skeptical at oil spill's disappearing act – Gulf Oil Spill". Miami Herald. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  84. ^ Bolsatd, Erika; Schoof, Renee; Talev, Margaret (2010-08-05). "Doubts follow rosy oil report". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-08-05. 
  85. ^ Zabarenko, Deborah (4 August 2010). "Nearly 3/4 of BP spill oil gone from Gulf". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-08-15. 
  86. ^ "Scientists call new gulf spill report 'ludicrous' – Oneindia News". Retrieved 2010-08-15. 
  87. ^ Borenstein, Seth (2010-08-04). "Looking for the Oil? NOAA Says It's Mostly Gone". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  88. ^ Suzanne Goldenberg, US environment correspondent (5 August 2010). "Gulf oil spill: White House accused of spinning report | Environment". The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-08-15. 
  89. ^ "Looking for the Oil? NOAA Says It's Mostly Gone". Boston Globe. Associated Press. 2010-08-16. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  90. ^ Cappiello, Dina (2010-12-04). "BP contests size of gulf oil spill". The Charlotte Observer. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-12-05. 
  91. ^ "Response To Oil On Gulf Island Beaches Continues" (Press release). National Park Service. 2010-06-04. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  92. ^ Bluestein, Greg (2010-06-03). "BP has another setback as oil slick threatens Florida". Associated Press. Cleveland Live, Inc. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  93. ^ Page, Jamie (2010-06-09). PNJ-28 "Coast Guard authorizes closure of Perdido Pass". Pensacola News Journal. PNJ-28. 
  94. ^ a b Kunzelman, Michael (2010-06-24). "Oil spewing once again in the Gulf". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-24. 
  95. ^ Kunzelman, Michael (2010-06-25). "BP gaffes kill hope". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-25. 
  96. ^ McConnaughey, Janet; Stacy, Mitch (2010-06-27). "Admiral back on the Gulf Coast for spill". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-07-01. 
  97. ^ Breen, Tom (2010-07-04). "BP costs for oil spill response pass $3 billion". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-07-05. 
  98. ^ a b c Lozano, Juan A. (2010-07-06). "BP spill spreads to Texas". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-07-06. 
  99. ^ Mui, Ylan Q.; Fahrenthold, David A. (2010-07-07). "Oil in Lake Pontchartrain stokes worries in New Orleans". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-07-08. 
  100. ^ Bob Marshall (12 September 2010). "New wave of oil comes ashore west of Mississippi River". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved 14 September 2010. 
  101. ^ "Massive stretches of weathered oil spotted in Gulf of Mexico". The Times-Picayune. 23 October 2010. Retrieved 23 October 2010. 
  102. ^ Jervis, Rick (2010-10-25). "Research teams find oil on bottom of Gulf". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-11-04. 
  103. ^ "NOAA Ocean Science Mission Changes Course to Collect Seafloor and Water Column Oil Spill Data". 2010-05-06. 
  104. ^ Gillis, Justin (2010-05-15). "Giant Plumes of Oil Forming Under the Gulf". The New York Times. 
  105. ^ Matthew Bigg (2010-06-25). "Interview: Scientists to study deepwater Gulf "oil plume"". Reuters. Thomson Reuters Foundation. 
  106. ^ Gillis, Justin (2010-05-15). "Giant Plumes of Oil Forming Under the Gulf". The New York Times. 
  107. ^ Brown, Matthew; Dearen, Jason (2010-05-27). "Gulf Oil Spill: Scientists Discover Massive New Sea Oil Plume". Huffington Post. 
  108. ^ a b "NOAA Completes Initial Analysis of Weatherbird II Water Samples". NOAA News. 2010-06-08. Retrieved 2008-06-25. 
  109. ^ Borenstein, Seth (20 August 2010). "Major study charts long-lasting oil plume in Gulf". The Daily Caller. Retrieved 22 Sept 2010. [dead link]
  110. ^ Kennedy, Sara (23 July 2010). "Researchers confirm subsea Gulf oil plumes are from BP well". McClatchy Newspapers. Retrieved 2 August 2010. 
  111. ^ Adcroft, A., R. Hallberg, J. P. Dunne, B. L. Samuels, J. A. Galt, C. H. Barker, and D. Payton (2010). "Simulations of underwater plumes of dissolved oil in the Gulf of Mexico" (PDF). Geophysical Research Letters 37: L18605. doi:10.1029/2010GL044689. 
  112. ^ How Fast Can Microbes Clean Up the Gulf Oil Spill?
  113. ^ Kennedy, Sara (23 July 2010). "Researchers confirm subsea Gulf oil plumes are from BP well". McClatchy Newspapers. Retrieved 19 Sept 2010. 
  114. ^ Roosevelt, Margot; Susman, Tina (2010-05-31). "BP's new plan risks worsening oil spill". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  115. ^ "USF says government tried to squelch their oil plume findings – St. Petersburg Times". 2010-08-10. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  116. ^ Stokstad, Erik (4 June 2010). "NOAA Asks for Time Out on Oil Plume Research Cruises". Science/AAAS. Retrieved 22 Sept 2010. 
  117. ^ "Review of R/V Brooks McCall Data to Examine Subsurface Oil". ProPublica. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  118. ^ E-mail (2010-06-24). "NOAA Confirms Oil Plumes Are From BP's Well". ProPublica. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  119. ^ Richard Camilli et al. (8 October 2010). "Tracking Hydrocarbon Plume Transport and Biodegradation at Deepwater Horizon". Science 330 (6001): 201–204. doi:10.1126/science.1195223. PMID 20724584. 
  120. ^ a b Richard Harris (September 10, 2010). "Scientists Find Thick Layer Of Oil On Seafloor". Retrieved 14 September 2010. 
  121. ^ Bruce Kennedy (13 September 2010). "Where's the Oil From the BP Spill? Researchers Look at the Ocean Floor". Retrieved 14 September 2010. 
  122. ^ The Search for BP's Oil. The Nation. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  123. ^ "BP accused of cover-up". Reuters. 2010-05-19. 
  124. ^ Goldenberg, Suzanne (2010-05-21). "BP switches on live video from oil leak". The Guardian (Guardian Media Group). Retrieved 2010-06-12. 
  125. ^ "Markey to Get Live Feed of BP Oil Spill on Website" (Press release). The House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming. 2010-05-19. Retrieved 2010-06-12. 
  126. ^ "U.S. to check BP spill size, heavy oil comes ashore". Reuters. 210-05-20. 
  127. ^ Mufson, Steven; Fahrenthold, David (2010-05-21). "Estimated rate of oil spill no longer holds up". Washington Post. 
  128. ^ a b c Peters, Jeremy W. (2010-06-09). "Efforts to Limit the Flow of Spill News". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). 
  129. ^ Kelly Cobiella. Coast Guard Under 'BP's Rules'. CBS News. 
  130. ^ "Coast Guard establishes 20-meter safety zone around all Deepwater Horizon protective boom operations" (Press release). Deepwater Horizon Incident Joint Information Center. 2010-06-30. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  131. ^ Kirkham, Chris (July 1, 2010) Media, boaters could face criminal penalties by entering oil cleanup 'safety zone'. Times-Picayune.
  132. ^ "The Spill and Transparency; Dispersant Reductions Misleading; Al Gore Investigation Reopened"(transcript). Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees. CNN. July 1, 2010. "If we can't show what is happening, warts and all, no one will see what's happening. And that makes it very easy to hide failure and hide incompetence and makes it very hard to highlight the hard work of cleanup crews and the Coast Guard."
  133. ^ "US oil spill 'threatens way of life', governor warns". BBC News. May 2, 2010. Retrieved May 2, 2010. 
  134. ^ Bolstad, Erika; Clark, Lesley; Chang, Daniel (2010-05-14). "Engineers work to place siphon tube at oil spill site". Toronto Star (McClatchy Newspapers). Retrieved 2010-05-14. 
  135. ^ "'Top kill' BP operation to half US oil leak fails". BBC News. May 29, 2010. Retrieved May 29, 2010. 
  136. ^ "Top kill fails". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-05-28. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  137. ^ Brenner, Noah; Guegel, Anthony; Pitt, Anthea (2010-05-15). "BP misses on first tube try". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  138. ^ "Update on Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Response – May 24" (Press release). BP. 2010-05-24. Retrieved 2010-05-24. 
  139. ^ Nuckols, Ben; Bluestein, Greg (2010-05-27). "Gulf awaits word on latest bid to plug oil leak". Knoxville News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  140. ^ Nelson, Melissa; Mohr, Holbrook (2010-06-05). "Oil stains beaches and tourists as slick spreads". Associated Press. CNBC. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  141. ^ Shirbon, Estelle (2010-06=06). "BP chief hopes cap will capture most of Gulf oil". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-06-08. 
  142. ^ Gillis, Justin; Fountain, Henry (2010-06-07). "Rate of Oil Leak, Still Not Clear, Puts Doubt on BP". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-06-08. 
  143. ^ a b c d e f g Brenner, Noah (2010-06-17). "Hayward says spill 'never should have happened'". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-06-17. 
  144. ^ Brenner, Noah; Pitt, Anthea; Lewis, Josh (2010-06-10). "Clear Leader, Helix Producer tapped for Macondo". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-06-10. 
  145. ^ Gonzalez, Angel (2010-07-06). "BP: About 24,980 Barrels Of Total Oil Recovered July 5". The Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones Newswires. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  146. ^ Breen, Tom (2010-07-09). "Robots begin work to remove cap from gushing well". Boston Herald. Associated Press. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  147. ^ Wells, Kent. "Sealing Cap Installation Animation". BP. Retrieved July 18, 2010. 
  148. ^ "BP turns to next attempt after top kill fails". Associated Press. July 14, 2010. 
  149. ^ "Spill boss says Macondo shut-in 'unlikely'". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-07-15. Retrieved 2010-07-16. 
  150. ^ Quinn, James (2010-05-14). "Barack Obama sends nuclear experts to tackle BP's Gulf of Mexico oil leak". The Daily Telegraph (Telegraph Media Group Limited). Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  151. ^ Revkin, Andrew C. (2010-06-03). "No Surprise: U.S. Rejects Nuclear Option for Gulf Oil Gusher". The New York Times Blogs. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  152. ^ "Relief wells and Subsea containment illustration". BP. 
  153. ^ Daly, et. al. (May 25, 2010). "Heat on White House to do more about Gulf spill". Associated Press. Fox News. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  154. ^ "Second Macondo relief well under way". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-05-17. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  155. ^ "Update on Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill – June 1". BP. 2010-06-01. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  156. ^ "Update on Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill – May 29". BP. 2010-05-30. Retrieved 2010-05-30. 
  157. ^ Vergano, Dan (2010-06-14). "Relief wells aim at pipe 18,000 feet deep". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-06-15. 
  158. ^ a b c Brenner, Noah; Guegel, Anthony; Hwee Hwee, Tan; Pitt, Anthea (2010-04-30). "Congress calls Halliburton on Macondo". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  159. ^ a b "BP MC252 Gulf Of Mexico Response Continues To Escalate On And Below Surface" (Press release). BP. 2010-04-29. Retrieved 2010-04-29. 
  160. ^ BP's Deepwater Oil Spill – Tests End and the Kill Begins, Well Reaches Static Condition
  161. ^ BP begins pumping cement in next stage of 'static kill'
  162. ^ Feller, Ben; Pace, Julie (2010-08-04). "Gov't has 'high confidence' oil spill almost over". Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  163. ^ Weber, Harry (2010-08-19). "Feds: No timeline for completing Gulf relief well". Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  164. ^ a b Seibel, Mark (2010-08-20). "BP to retain failed device for evidence". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-08-20. 
  165. ^ a b "BP: Blowout preventer that failed to stop Gulf of Mexico oil leak removed from well". Associated Press. 2010-09-03. Retrieved 2010-09-03. 
  166. ^ a b c "Failed blowout preventer, a key piece of evidence in Gulf oil spill probe, secure on boat". Associated Press. 2010-09-04. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  167. ^ Fausset, Richard (2010-09-11). "Sealing to start on BP well". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-09-11. 
  168. ^ "BP: Cement being pumped in to permanently seal the company's blown-out well in Gulf of Mexico". Fox News. 2010-09-16. Retrieved 2010-09-18. 
  169. ^ a b c Weber, Harry R. (2010-09-19). "Blown-out BP well finally killed at bottom of Gulf". Boston Globe. Associated Press. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  170. ^ EcoHearth - Planet Sludge: Millions of Abandoned, Leaking Oil and Gas Wells
  171. ^ Borenstein, Seth (2010-04-30). "Oil spill is the 'bad one' experts feared". MSNBC. 
  172. ^ Eric Ward (2010-05-06). "Gulf Oil Spill Daily Response Activity Now at BP Web Site". URLwire. Retrieved 2010-05-06. 
  173. ^ "BP Hopes to Contain Main Oil Leak in Gulf Soon". Voice of America. 2010-05-04. Retrieved 2010-05-04. 
  174. ^ "Four oil-cleanup workers fall ill; Breton Sound fleet ordered back to dock". 2010-05-26. 
  175. ^ "BP inundated with home-grown cleanup solutions". MSNBC. 2010-06-27. Retrieved 2010-06-27. 
  176. ^ a b Mufson, Steven (2010-05-04). "Today's spills, yesterday's tools". The Washington Post: pp. A1, A8. Retrieved 2010-05-19. 
  177. ^ "BP Steps Up Shoreline Protection Plans on US Gulf Coast" (Press release). BP. 2010-04-30. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  178. ^ Containment boom effort comes up short in BP oil spill. (2010-06-11). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  179. ^ Schleifstein, Mark (2010-05-22). "Plaquemines Parish President Nungesser claims berm oil capture plan killed.". The Times Picayune. 
  180. ^ Achenbach, Joel (May 23, 2010). "Gulf coast oil slick headed for Grand Isle, Louisiana". WashingtonPost. 
  181. ^ James D. "Buddy" Caldwell (2010-05-23). "Letter to Lt. General Robert L. Van Antwerp, US Army Corps of Engineers". Louisiana Attorney General's Office. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  182. ^ Bill Sasser (2010-05-24). "BP oil spill pushes Louisiana to desperate, massive 'berm' plan". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  183. ^ Staff (2010-05-24). "Attorney General Buddy Caldwell tells Corps of Engineers state has emergency powers to build barrier islands". Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  184. ^ Ashby Jones (2010-05-25). "Will the Gulf Cleanup Effort Yield a Constitutional Smackdown?". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  185. ^ Bluestein, Greg (2010-06-03). "BP cuts pipe, plans to lower cap over Gulf spill". The Washington Times. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  186. ^ "Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Corporation Begins Work on First Sand Berm off the Louisiana Coast". Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  187. ^ Murray, Matt. (2010-10-22) Lousiana [sic] Builds Islands to Capture Oil in the Gulf. The Lipman Times. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  188. ^ Burdeau, Cain; Weber, Harry R. (2010-12-17). "Almost no oil recovered from sand berms". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  189. ^ "What are oil dispersants?"]. CNN. 2010-05-15. Retrieved 2010-07-02. 
  190. ^ Renner, Rebecca (2010-05-07). "US oil spill testing ground for dispersants". Royal Society of Chemistry. Retrieved 2010-07-02. 
  191. ^ a b Schor, Elana (2010-06-09). "Ingredients of Controversial Dispersants Used on Gulf Spill Are Secrets No More". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-07-02. 
  192. ^ Microsoft Word – 0275.doc. (PDF) . Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  193. ^ Foster, Joanna M. (2011-08-26). "Impact of Gulf Spill's Underwater Dispersants Is Examined -". Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  194. ^ "Nalco Releases Additional Technical Information About COREXIT" (Press release). Nalco Holding Company. 2010-05-27. Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  195. ^ a b Material Safety Data Sheet – NALCO Energy Services, L.P. – Prepared by Product Safety Department – Date issued 14 June 2005 – Retrieved 13 December 2010.
  196. ^ Chemical dispersants being used in Gulf clean-up are potentially toxic. Grist. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  197. ^ a b c Mark Guarino (2010-05-15). "In Gulf oil spill, how helpful – or damaging – are dispersants?". Christian Science Monitor. 
  198. ^ Wang, Marian (2010-05-16). "In Gulf Spill, BP Using Dispersants Banned in U.K.". ProPublica. 
  199. ^ a b c Mark Guarino (2010-05-17). "Gulf oil spill: Has BP 'turned corner' with siphon success?". Christian Science Monitor. 
  200. ^ Geoff Mohan (2010-05-19). "Gulf oil spill: BP grilled over choice of dispersant". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-05-21. 
  201. ^ "US oil production, shipping unaffected by spill so far". Agence France-Presse. 2010-05-01. Retrieved 2010-05-04. 
  202. ^ "Some oil spill events from Friday, May 14, 2010". ABC News. Associated Press. 2010-05-14. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  203. ^ "Deepwater Horizon Ongoing Response Timeline". [dead link]
  204. ^ "National Contingency Plan Product Schedule". Environmental Protection Agency. 2010-05-13. Retrieved 2010-05-21. 
  205. ^ "Dispersant Monitoring and Assessment Directive – Addendum". Environmental Protection Agency. 2010-05-20. Retrieved 210-05-20. 
  206. ^ Campbell Robertson and Elisabeth Rosenthal (2010-05-20). "Agency Orders Use of a Less Toxic Chemical in Gulf". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-05-21. 
  207. ^ Jonathan Tilove (2010-05-21). "BP is sticking with its dispersant choice". Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  208. ^ Elisabeth Rosenthal (2010-05-24). "In Standoff With Environmental Officials, BP Stays With an Oil Spill Dispersant". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  209. ^ Jackson, Lisa P. (2010-05-24). "Statement by EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson from Press Conference on Dispersant Use in the Gulf of Mexico with U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Landry". Environmental Protection Agency. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  210. ^ By Ed Lavandera, CNN (3 June 2010). "Dispersants flow into Gulf in 'science experiment'". Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  211. ^ "Scientists: BP dispersants making spill more toxic - Nightly News - NBC News Investigates -". MSNBC. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  212. ^ Henry A. Waxman (July 30, 2010). "One Hundred Eleventh Congress". Retrieved 14 September 2010. 
  213. ^ a b Bolstad, Erika; Clark, Lesley (2010-08-02). "Government defends BP's use of dispersants, but worries linger". McClatchy Newspapers. Retrieved 2010-08-03. 
  214. ^ Goldenberg, Suzanne (2010-08-03). "BP oil spill: Obama administration's scientists admit alarm over chemicals". The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  215. ^ "Riki Ott: An Open Letter to US EPA, Region 6". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  216. ^ (Photo credit Jerry Moran\Native Orleanian). "Degraded oil in Mississippi Sound tests positive for dispersants, says lawyer |". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  217. ^ a b Khan, Amina (4 September 2010). "Gulf oil spill: Effects of dispersants remain a mystery".,0,6506539.story. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  218. ^ Swartz, Spencer (3 September 2010). "BP Provides Lessons Learned From Gulf Spill -". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  219. ^ a b c Eli Kintisch (13 August 2010). "An Audacious Decision in Crisis Gets Cautious Praise". Science 329 (5993): 735–6. doi:10.1126/science.329.5993.735. PMID 20705819. 
  220. ^ Suzanne Goldenberg (5 May 2010). "Dispersant 'may make Deepwater Horizon oil spill more toxic' | Environment". The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  221. ^ "Current News – University of South Florida". 2010-08-17. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  222. ^ "22-mile-long oily plume mapped near BP site - Disaster in the Gulf -". MSNBC. 2010-08-19. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  223. ^ Borenstein, Seth (2010-08-20). "Major study charts long-lasting oil plume in Gulf". Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  224. ^ Dittrick, Paula (2010-04-30). "Federal officials visit oil spill area, talk with BP". Oil & Gas Journal (PennWell Corporation). (subscription required). Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  225. ^ Gabbatt, Adam (2010-06-16). BP oil spill: Kevin Costner's oil-water separation machines help with clean-up. The Guardian.
  226. ^ Fountain, Henry (2010-06-24). "Advances in Oil Spill Cleanup Lag Since Valdez". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-07-05. 
  227. ^ Clarke, Sanchez, Bonfiles, Escobedo (June 15, 2010). "BP 'Excited' Over Kevin Costner's Oil Cleanup Machine, Purchases 32". ABC News Good Morning America.
  228. ^ "Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Response: Current Operations as of June 28". Deep Water Horizon Unified Command Agency. 2010-06-28. Retrieved 2010-06-28. [dead link]
  229. ^ 11/12/2010: EPA Releases Reports on Dioxin Emitted During Deepwater Horizon BP Spill/Reports find levels of dioxins created during controlled burns were below levels of concern. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  230. ^ Why Is the Gulf Cleanup So Slow?, Wall St. Journal, July 2, 2010
  231. ^ The President Does a Jones Act, Wall St. Journal, June 19, 2010
  232. ^ Douglas, Will (2010-06-30). "BP False Talking Point: Jones Act blocks Gulf help". McClatchy Newspapers. 
  233. ^ "Giant 'super skimmer' no help with Gulf oil spill". Reuters. July 17, 2010. Retrieved July 16, 2010. 
  234. ^ "Giant oil skimmer 'A Whale' deemed a bust for Gulf of Mexico spill". Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  235. ^ Richard A. Kerr (13 August 2010). "A Lot of Oil on the Loose, Not So Much to Be Found". Science 329 (5993): 734–5. doi:10.1126/science.329.5993.734. PMID 20705818. 
  236. ^ a b Schoof, Renee (2010-07-17). "Mother Nature left to mop up oily mess". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-07-17. 
  237. ^ ABC, Coastal Crisis – Oil Dispersants Report
  238. ^ Is The Oil Spill Horror Over? : Story of the Week: Science Channel. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  239. ^ Hughes, Siobhan (2010-08-19). "Top Democrat Criticizes U.S. Oil Spill Report -". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  240. ^ Suzanne Goldenberg, US environment correspondent (19 August 2010). "BP oil spill: US scientist retracts assurances over success of cleanup | Environment". The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  241. ^ Gillis, Justin (2010-07-27). "On the Surface, Gulf Oil Spill Is Vanishing Fast; Concerns Stay". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  242. ^ Chipman, Kim. (2010-08-17) Scientists Say as Much as 79% of Oil Remains in Gulf of Mexico. Bloomberg. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  243. ^ a b Jerry Cope: NASA Data Strengthens Reports of Toxic Rain on the Gulf Coast From BP Spill. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  244. ^ Allen, Nick (2010-08-25). "Microbe eating spilled oil in Gulf of Mexico". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2010-08-26. 
  245. ^ "Deep-sea Oil Plume Goes Missing". Science News. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  246. ^ Justin Gillis and John Collins Rudolf (August 19, 2010). "Gulf Oil Plume Is Not Breaking Down Fast, Study Says". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 September 2010. 
  247. ^ Brown, Eryn (16 September 2010). "Bacteria in the gulf mostly digested gas, not oil, study finds". Los Angeles Times. 
  248. ^ a b Oil-eating microbes may not be all they’re cracked up to be | The Upshot Yahoo! News. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  249. ^ John D. Kessler et al. (21 January 2011). "A Persistent Oxygen Anomaly Reveals the Fate of Spilled Methane in the Deep Gulf of Mexico". Science 331 (6015): 312–315. doi:10.1126/science.1199697. PMID 21212320. 
  250. ^ Riki Ott: Bio-Remediation or Bio-Hazard? Dispersants, Bacteria and Illness in the Gulf. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  251. ^ "Gulf of Mexico oil leak 'worst US environment disaster'". BBC News. 30 May 2010. 
  252. ^ "Oil Spills by the Numbers". Retrieved 2010-01-10. 
  253. ^ "Ocean may soon be more corrosive than when the dinosaurs died". Balanced Seas Initiative. 2006-02-21. Retrieved 2010-06-17. 
  254. ^ a b "Scientists Find Evidence That Oil And Dispersant Mix Is Making Its Way Into The Foodchain". Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  255. ^ "Gulf Oil Spill Response". National Parks Conservation Association. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  256. ^ Biello, David (2010-06-09). "The BP Spill's Growing Toll On the Sea Life of the Gulf". Yale Environment 360. Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  257. ^ Shirley, Thomas C.; John W. Tunnell, Jr., Fabio Moretzsohn, and Jorge Brenner (May 2010). "Biodiversity of the Gulf of Mexico: Applications to the Deep Horizon oil spill" (Press release). Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies, Texas A&M University. Retrieved 2010-06-14. 
  258. ^
  259. ^ Collection Report(PDF). U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. July 5, 2010.[dead link]
  260. ^ [1][dead link]
  261. ^ Henderson, Bruce (2010-05-22). "Oil may harm sea life in N.C.". The Charlotte Observer. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  262. ^ Resnick-Ault, Jessica; Wethe, David (2010-06-02). "BP Oil Leak May Last Until Christmas in Worst Case Scenario". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  263. ^ Collins, Jeffrey; Dearen, Jason (2010-05-16). "BP: Mile-long tube sucking oil away from Gulf well". The Washington Times. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  264. ^ "US says BP move to curb oil leak 'no solution'". BBC News. 2010-05-17. Retrieved 2010-07-01. 
  265. ^ a b "Oil spill full of methane, adding new concerns". msnbc. 2010-06-18. Retrieved 2010-06-20. 
  266. ^ Biello, David (July 2010). "Lasting Menace: Gulf oil-spill disaster likely to exert environmental harm for decades". Scientific American 303 (1): 16–16. doi:10.1038/scientificamerican1210-16. Retrieved 2010-06-22. 
  267. ^ Fox, Maggie (July 8, 2010). "New batfish species found under Gulf oil spill". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  268. ^ Smith, Lewis (23 May 2011). "Deep sea fish named in world top ten new species". Fish2Fork. Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  269. ^ Schneyer, Joshua (2010-09-27). "U.S. oil spill waters contain carcinogens: report". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  270. ^ "Researchers Found 40-Fold Increase In Carcinogenic Compounds In Gulf". Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  271. ^ "Massive stretches of weathered oil spotted in Gulf of Mexico". The Times-Picayune. 28 October 2010. Retrieved 23 October 2010. 
  272. ^ "Toxic chemicals found deep at BP oil spill site". Reuters (Yahoo health). 2010-11-02. Retrieved 2010-11-04. 
  273. ^ "Scientists find damage to coral near BP well". Fox News. Associated Press. 2010-10-05. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  274. ^ "Dead coral near BP spill called 'smoking gun'". Associated Press. 2010-10-05. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  275. ^ Burdeau, Cain (2010-12-17). "Coast Guard: Little seafloor oil from Gulf spill". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-12-24. 
  276. ^ Nelson, Karen (February 22, 2011). "Spike Reported in Number of Stillborn Dolphins on Coast". Retrieved April 3, 2011. 
  277. ^ Government tightens lid on dolphin death probe, Reuters, March 25, 2011
  278. ^ Conservation Letters: Whale and dolphin death toll during Deepwater disaster may have been greatly underestimated by Dr. Rob Williams, et al. – Offshore Oil Drilling. (2011-03-30). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  279. ^ Dolphin toll from BP oil spill far higher: study – Yahoo! News. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  280. ^ [2][dead link]
  281. ^ "State of emergency declared as oil spill nears Louisiana coast". CNN. 2010-04-29. Retrieved 2010-04-29. 
  282. ^ "Oil 'reaches' US Gulf Coast from spill". BBC News. 2010-04-30. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  283. ^ a b "Bryan Walsh. (2010-05-01). Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill: No End in Sight for Eco-Disaster. Time. Retrieved 2010-05-01". 1 May 2010.,8599,1986323,00.html. Retrieved 2010-05-03. 
  284. ^ Jones, Steve (2010-05-22). "Wholesale seafood prices rising as oil spill grows". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  285. ^ "In Precautionary Move, DHH Closes Additional Oyster Harvesting Areas West of the Mississippi Due to Oil Spill". State of Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals. 2010-05-23. Retrieved 2010-05-24. 
  286. ^ "NOAA Closes Commercial and Recreational Fishing in Oil-Affected Portion of Gulf of Mexico". Deepwater Horizon Incident Joint Information Center. May 2, 2010. Retrieved May 2, 2010. 
  287. ^ "FB10-029: Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Emergency Area Closure in the Gulf of Mexico". NOAA, National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Regional Office, Southeast Fishery Bulletin. May 3, 2010. Retrieved June 3, 2010. 
  288. ^ "FB10-055: BP Oil Spill: NOAA Modifies Commercial and Recreational Fishing Closure in the Oil-Affected Portions of the Gulf of Mexico". NOAA, National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Regional Office, Southeast Fishery Bulletin. June 21, 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-22. 
  289. ^ "Deepwater Horizon/BP Oil Spill: Size and Percent Coverage of Fishing Area Closures Due to BP Oil Spill". NOAA, National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Regional Office. 2010-06-21. Retrieved 2010-06-22.  Table.
  290. ^ Bruce Alpert (2010-05-25). "The feds declare fisheries disaster in La., Miss., Ala.". Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  291. ^ Elswick, Ryan (2010-06-27). "Fishing charters see new boost". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-07-02. 
  292. ^ Skoloff, Brian (2010-07-10). "NOAA: Gulf seafood tested so far is safe to eat". The Sun News. Associated Press.,gulf-seafood-safe-to-eat-071010.article. Retrieved 2010-07-10. [dead link]
  293. ^ "Some fishing areas off Fla. Panhandle reopened". CBS News. Associated Press. 2010-08-11. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  294. ^ Laura Parker Contributor. "New Lab Results Raise Questions About Gulf Seafood's Safety". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  295. ^ ESA Portal – Bluefin tuna hit hard by ‘Deepwater Horizon’ disaster. (2010-10-18). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  296. ^ Oil covers catch hauled in by shrimpers. (2010-11-22). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  297. ^ NOAA Closes 4,200 Square Miles of Gulf Waters to Royal Red Shrimping. (2010-11-24). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  298. ^ Gulf seafood safe? Experts disagree. (2010-11-22). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  299. ^ PDF Documents From WFTV Eyewitness News Orlando. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  300. ^ Laboratory Test Results Raise Concern Over Gulf Seafood – News Story – WFTV Orlando. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  301. ^ "All U.S. federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico once closed to fishing due to spill now open". 2011-04-20. Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  302. ^
  303. ^ "Fishermen angry as BP pushes to end payments for future losses | New Orleans". Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  304. ^ a b Reed, Travis (2010-05-27). "Spill hasn't yet emptied hotels on Gulf Coast". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-05-27. 
  305. ^ Anderson, Lorena (2010-06-04). "Oil could hit Myrtle Beach area by July". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-06-04. 
  306. ^ Proctor, Carleton (2010-08-01). "Big price tag for recovery of Gulf Coast". Pensacola News Journal. Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  307. ^ Oxford Economics (2010-07-21). "Potential Impact of the Gulf Oil Spill on Tourism". Retrieved 2010-08-01. 
  308. ^ a b c Skoloff, Brian; Wardell, Jane (2010-11-02). "BP's oil spill costs grow, Gulf residents react". Washington Post. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-11-03. 
  309. ^ Breen, Tom (2010-07-05). "BP costs for oil spill response pass $3 billion". Associated Press (Yahoo News). Retrieved 2010-07-05. 
  310. ^ Werner, Erica (2010-05-03). "Federal law may limit BP liability in oil spill". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 
  311. ^ "Spill triggers effort to up liability cap". (subscription required)
  312. ^ Doggett, Tom (May 25, 2010). Congress can stick BP with bigger liability cap Reuters.
  313. ^ a b c Pagnamenta, Robin (2010-05-26). "Lloyd's syndicates launch legal action over BP insurance claim". The Times. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  314. ^ "Macondo slugs insurance rates". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-06-04. Retrieved 2010-06-04. 
  315. ^ Tharp, Paul (2010-06-25). "Stormy weather: BP's stock hits new low". New York Post. Retrieved 2010-06-27. 
  316. ^ a b Wardell, Jane (2010-07-27). "BP replaces CEO Hayward, reports $17 billion loss". Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  317. ^ Brenner, Noah; Pitt, Anthea (2010-06-08). "BP calls in FPSO for Macondo". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-06-08. 
  318. ^ Wardell, Jane (2010-10-01). "BP says oil spill costs rise to $11.2 billion". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  319. ^ Weber, Harry (2010-12-19). "Time to scrap BP brand? Gas-station owners divided". Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  320. ^ a b Sasser, Bill (2010-05-24). "Despite BP oil spill, Louisiana still loves Big Oil". Christian Science Monitor. 
  321. ^ Farrington, Brendan (2010-06-23). "Gulf property sales slide further on oil fears". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-23. 
  322. ^ David Teather (14 July 2010). "British companies' reputation in the US is under threat, warns Washington overseas investment group". Guardian. Retrieved 2010-07-19. 
  323. ^ Rowena Mason (10 July 2010). "UK firms suffer after BP oil spill". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2010-07-19. 
  324. ^ a b "BP, Transocean Lawsuits Surge as Oil Spill Spreads in Gulf". Bloomberg. 2010-05-01. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  325. ^ "BP Suits Should Be Sent to New Orleans, U.S. Says". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg. 2010-06-17. Retrieved 2010-06-18. 
  326. ^ a b Mufson, Steven; Eilperin, Juliet (2010-05-17). "Lawyers lining up for class-action suits over oil spill". The Washington Post (The Washington Post Company): p. A1. Retrieved 2010-05-25. 
  327. ^ Calkins, Laurel; Feeley, Jef (2010-06-02). "Judges Quit BP Gulf Oil-Spill Lawsuits Over Conflicts". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg. Retrieved 2010-06-19. 
  328. ^ Sachdev, Ameet (2010-05-18). "Tide of oil spill lawsuits begins to rise". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  329. ^ Leo King (21 April 2011). "BP £24bn lawsuits claim contractors failed to use modelling software properly". Computerworld UK. Retrieved 26 April 2010. 
  330. ^ Elizabeth Grossman (2010-06-01). "BP Lies about Air Toxicity as Gulf Workers Are Hospitalized". The Faster Times. Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  331. ^ "Louisiana Environmental Action Network (LEAN)". Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  332. ^ "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" (video). MSNBC. 2010-06-15. Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  333. ^ Taylor, Marissa (2010-06-23). "Doctors call for help protecting Gulf oil spill workers". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 2010-07-20. Retrieved 2010-06-27. 
  334. ^ "Louisiana DHH Releases Oil Spill-Related Exposure Information". Louisiana Department of Health & Hospitals(DHH). 2010-06-14. Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  335. ^ Mascarelli, Amanda (2010-06-24). "Oil-spill health risks under scrutiny". Nature. Retrieved 2010-06-24. 
  336. ^ "Assessing the Human Health Effects of the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill: An Institute of Medicine Workshop". Institute of Medicine. Retrieved 2010-06-24.  Presentations online
  337. ^ Hedgpeth, Dana and Fahrenthold, David A. (June 24, 2010). "Apparent Suicide May Add to Oil Spill's Toll". Washington Post. See also video: "Fisherman Loses Business, Commits Suicide". CBS Evening News
  338. ^ Pouliot, Karlie (2010-06-24). "Mental Health Fallout From Oil Spill Just Beginning". Fox News.,2933,595202,00.html. Retrieved 2010-06-24. 
  339. ^ Siegel, Marc (2010-06-17). "The Psychological Toll of the Oil Spill". Salon. Retrieved 2010-06-24. 
  340. ^ BP dispersants 'causing sickness' – Features. Al Jazeera English (2010-10-29). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  341. ^ Hobbs, Jennie. (2010-08-20) Worries persist as Health Department sounds all clear | worries, persist, health – Local News. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  342. ^ Hobbs, Jennie. (2010-11-02) Local doctor links spill to symptoms | doctor, spill, soto – Local News. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  343. ^ a b c "Judge denies stay in moratorium ruling". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-06-24. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  344. ^ Fisk, M. C.; Calkins, L. (2010-06-29). "Court grants speedy hearing for U.S. on drill ban". Business Week. Bloomberg. Retrieved 2010-07-04. 
  345. ^ Tracy, Tennille (2010-06-29). Court To Hear Arguments In Drilling Moratorium Case July 8. NASDAQ. Dow Jones Newswires. Retrieved 2010-07-04.
  346. ^ a b "Salazar prepping new deep-water drill ban". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-06-30. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  347. ^ "Lawmaker wants 7-year BP lease ban". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-06-30. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  348. ^ VanderKlippe, Nathan (2010-04-30). "Arctic drilling faces tougher scrutiny". The Globe and Mail: pp. B1, B8. Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  349. ^ Robertson, Grant; Galloway, Gloria (2010-05-05). "Ottawa talks tough on offshore drilling". The Globe and Mail: pp. A1, A13. Retrieved 2010-05-05. 
  350. ^ Wood, Daniel B. (2010-05-04). "Citing BP oil spill, Schwarzenegger drops offshore drilling plan". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 2010-05-06. 
  351. ^ Mirchandani, Rajesh (2010-05-03). "California's Schwarzenegger turns against oil drilling". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-05-06. 
  352. ^ Associated Press (2010-07-08). "Fla. governor calls special oil drilling session". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 2010-07-20. Retrieved 2010-07-08. 
  353. ^ Bosquet, Steve (2010-07-20). "Party-line vote ends Florida's oil drilling ban special session". Miami Herald. Archived from the original on 2010-08-02. Retrieved 2010-07-20. 
  354. ^ "Q&A: Deep-water drilling restrictions". BBC News. 2010-09-27. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  355. ^ "Can Offshore Drilling Really Make the U.S. Oil Independent?". Scientific American. September 12, 2008.
  356. ^ "Barreling Toward Peak Oil". BusinessWeek. May 27, 2010.
  357. ^ "Pickens: Let's drop dependence on foreign oil". Denver Business Journal. July 10, 2008.
  358. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions – Crude Oil". U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).
  359. ^ Tom Bergin (2010-04-30). "BP CEO says will pay oil spill claims". Reuters. Retrieved 2010-04-30. 
  360. ^ a b "White House: BP Will Pay $20B Into Gulf Spill Fund". NPR. 2010-06-16. 
  361. ^ a b Weisman, Jonathan; Chazan, Guy (2010-06-16). "BP Halts Dividend, Agrees to $20 Billion Fund for Victims". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  362. ^ "BP to fund $20bn Gulf of Mexico oil spill payout". BBC News. 2010-06-16. Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  363. ^ King, Neil Jr. (2010-06-21). "Feinberg Ramps Up $20 Billion Compensation Fund". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  364. ^ Efstathiou, Jim (2010-08-11). "BP Spill Fund to Be Backed by Future Drilling Revenue". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  365. ^ Frommer, Frederic J. (2010-07-27). "Politics | Feinberg says he will divulge his salary | Seattle Times Newspaper". Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  366. ^ VPR News: Feinberg Vows Quick Response On Gulf Spill Claims. (2001-09-11). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  367. ^ a b Skoloff, Brian. (2010-10-05) Problems plague BP's oil spill compensation fund. BusinessWeek. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  368. ^ Snyder, Jim. (2010-10-08) Feinberg Firm Paid More Than $2.5 Million by BP in 3 1/2 Months. Bloomberg. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  369. ^ "Few BP Claims Checks Handed Out So Far | BP Gulf Oil Spill". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  370. ^ By the CNN Wire Staff (3 June 2010). "Feinberg plans to be more generous than courts in oil claims process". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  371. ^ "BP oil claims process goes independent". CNN. 2010-08-23. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  372. ^ Pillow, Travis (2010-08-20). "McCollum: Feinberg’s oil spill claims proposal unfair to Floridians " Florida Independent: News. Politics. Media". Retrieved 2010-09-05. 
  373. ^ Anderson, Curt (2010-09-10). "Gulf's big choice: Cash in or litigate". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-09-10. 
  374. ^ John Raoux, The Associated Press. "About 15,000 oil spill claims OK'd by BP remain unpaid". Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  375. ^ "Patience running out for Feinberg's oil spill claims process | Tampa Bay, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Sarasota". Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  376. ^ "Obama administration not happy with BP claims czar Feinberg". 2010-09-24. Retrieved 2010-10-01. 
  377. ^ For family, receiving emergency oil spill help a matter of life and death | | News. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  378. ^ "BP Fund Czar Promises Bigger, Faster Claims – ABC News". Retrieved 2010-10-02. 
  379. ^ (Press-Register/Victor Calhoun). "Business owners, public officials say claims process inequitable |". Retrieved 2010-10-02. 
  380. ^ Skoloff, Brian (2010-11-01). "Number of residents denied BP money up sharply". ABC News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-11-04. 
  381. ^ Justice Department official asks for changes to claims process | (2010-11-21). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  382. ^ DOJ: Oil fund administrator needs transparency. (2010-11-21). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  383. ^ Hughes, Siobhan; Dezember, Ryan (2010-11-26). "Feinberg Softens His Stance on Claims From Spill". The Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2010-12-19. 
  384. ^ Skoloff, Brian. (2010-11-04) Law firm of BP claims czar paid $3.3M so far. BusinessWeek. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  385. ^ BP Increases Pay For Claims Czar Ken Feinberg's Law Firm To $1.25 Million Per Month. Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  386. ^ FOX News – Politics – Executive Branch Headlines – As Next Tourist Season Approaches, Deadline Comes for Gulf Oil Spill Claims. (2001-09-11). Retrieved on 2011-04-07.
  387. ^ "Mississippi AG Sues Kenneth Feinberg". WKRG. Retrieved 2011-11-05. 
  388. ^ [3][dead link]
  389. ^ "Salazar Launches Safety and Environmental Protection Reforms to Toughen Oversight of Offshore Oil and Gas Operations" (Press release). US department of Interior. May 11, 2010. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  390. ^ "Weekly Address: President Obama Establishes Bipartisan National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling" (Press release). 2010-05-22. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  391. ^ "Executive Order- National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling (White House, May 22, 2010)". 2010-05-22. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  392. ^ Attorney General Eric Holder on Gulf Oil Spill. U.S. Dept. of Justice. June 1, 2010.
  393. ^ "BP makes progress on new oil capture system". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-07-12. Retrieved 2010-07-12. 
  394. ^ Brenner, Noah; Guegel, Anthony (2010-06-17). "Congress hammers Hayward". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). Retrieved 2010-07-10. 
  395. ^ "Anadarko and Mitsui executives set to testify". Upstream Online (NHST Media Group). 2010-07-09. Retrieved 2010-07-10. 
  396. ^ "BP engineer called doomed rig a 'nightmare well'". CBS News. Associated Press. 2010-06-14. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  397. ^ Gillis, Justin; Broder, John (2010-05-10). "Nitrogen-Cement Mix Is Focus of Gulf Inquiry". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). 
  398. ^ Bart Stupak, Chairman (2010-05-12). Opening Statement, "Inquiry into the Deepwater Horizon Gulf Coast Oil Spill". U.S. House Committee on Commerce and Energy, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations. Retrieved 2010-05-12. 
  399. ^ Andersson, Hilary (2010-06-21). "BP was told of oil safety fault 'weeks before blast'". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-06-25. 
  400. ^ David Hammer (2010-05-26). "Hearings: BP representative overruled drillers, insisted on displacing mud with seawater". Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  401. ^ David Hammer (2010-05-26). "Oil spill hearings: BP man on Deepwater Horizon rig refuses to testify, says he will take the Fifth". Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2010-05-27. 
  402. ^ Erika Bolstad, Joseph Goodman and Marisa Taylor (2010-05-26). "BP worker takes 5th, making prosecution a possibility". Retrieved 2010-05-27. 
  403. ^ David Hammer (2010-05-27). "Joint hearings resume in Kenner with a reduced witness list". Times-Picayune. Retrieved 2010-05-27. 
  404. ^ Connelly, Eileen (2010-06-18). "Anadarko points finger at BP on Gulf oil spill". The Sun News. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-19. 
  405. ^ "BP rejects oil drill partner's 'negligence' claim". BBC News. June 19, 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-30. 
  406. ^ "Deepwater Horizon blowout preventer 'faulty' – Congress". BBC News. 2010-05-13. Retrieved 2010-06-21. 
  407. ^ "Oil spill: safety valve was wrongly plumbed on rig, says BP executive". The Daily Telegraph. 2010-08-25. Retrieved 2010-08-26. 
  408. ^ Weber, Harry R.; Kunzelman, Michael; Cappiello, Dina (2010-09-08). "All eyes on BP report on Gulf". The Columbian. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-09-08. 
  409. ^ "Oil spill: BP 'did not sacrifice safety to save money'". BBC. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 12 November 2010. 
  410. ^ "Gulf oil spill: President's panel says firms complacent". BBC. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 12 November 2010. 
  411. ^ Cappiello, Dina (2010-11-17). "Experts: BP ignored warning signs on doomed well". News & Record. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-11-17. 
  412. ^ On "Oil Spill: The National Academy of Engineers Spreads the Blame Around" – by Brian Walsh – Ecocentric – 17 November 2010 – Time Inc.
  413. ^
  414. ^ "Missing Oil Spill Commission Document Shows BP Made Risky Decisions in Gulf to Save Time" – by Katie Howell – The New York Times – 23 November 2010.
  415. ^ Carroll, Joe (7 December 2010). "Halliburton Worker on Smoke Break Missed BP Well Data". Bloomberg Businessweek. 
  416. ^ Weber, Harry R. (2010-12-24). "Fed board: In a statement Keep companies away from oil spill evidence". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved 21010-12-24. 
  417. ^ "FORENSIC EXAMINATION OF DEEPWATER HORIZON BLOWOUT PREVENTER-Final Report". 20 March 2011. Retrieved 2010-03-25. 
  418. ^ See page 5 of "FORENSIC EXAMINATION OF DEEPWATER HORIZON BLOWOUT PREVENTER-Final Report: Volume 1". 20 March 2011. Retrieved 2010-03-25. 
  419. ^ U.S. Coast Guard (September 14, 2011). "Report of Investigation into the Circumstances Surrounding the Explosion, Fire, Sinking and Loss of Eleven Crew Members Aboard the MOBILE OFFSHORE DRILLING UNIT DEEPWATER HORIZON". U.S. Government. Retrieved 06.10.2011. 
  420. ^ Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (September 14, 2011). "REPORT REGARDING THE CAUSES OF THE APRIL 20, 2010 MACONDO WELL BLOWOUT". U.S. Government. Retrieved 06.10.2011. 
  421. ^ "Obama oil spill commission's final report blames disaster on cost-cutting by BP and partners". The Telegraph. January 5, 2011. Retrieved 6 January 2011. 
  422. ^ National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling (January 2011). "Deep Water: The Gulf Oil Disaster and the Future of Offshore Drilling". US Government. Retrieved 12.01.2011. 
  423. ^ a b c d "Panel: BP, others made risky decisions before spill". Associated Press. January 5, 2011. Retrieved 6 January 2011. 
  424. ^ a b Rascoe, Ayesha (January 5, 2011). "BP, firms made risky decisions before spill: report". Reuters. Retrieved 6 January 2011. 
  425. ^ a b c d e Broder, John M. (January 5, 2011). "Blunders Abounded Before Gulf Spill, Panel Says". New York Times. Retrieved 6 January 2011. 
  426. ^ a b Mufson, Steven (January 5, 2011). "BP, Transocean, Halliburton blamed by presidential Gulf oil spill commission". The Washington Post. Retrieved 6 January 2011. 
  427. ^ a b c Cappiello, Dina; Weber, Harry R. (2011-01-05). "Panel: Without changes in oil industry and government, BP-like spill could happen again". Chicago Tribune.,0,7248032.story. Retrieved 2011-02-26. 
  428. ^ [4] Final Report: BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling

External links

Lead state agency websites

News media

Interactive maps


Animations of the disaster and sealing efforts

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling — The National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling is a bipartisan presidential commission, established by Executive Order 13543 signed by Barack Obama on May 21, 2010, that is “tasked with providing… …   Wikipedia

  • Unified Command (Deepwater Horizon oil spill) — Thad Allen provides a briefing to the Unified Area Command in New Orleans on June 28, 2010. The Unified Command provides Incident Command System/Unified Command (ICS) for coordinating response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The organization… …   Wikipedia

  • National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling — La National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling (littéralement « Commission nationale sur la fuite de pétrole de BP Deepwater Horizon et le forage offshore »), parfois appelée « Oil Spill… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Deepwater Horizon (disambiguation) — Deepwater Horizon was a drilling rig which sank in the Gulf of Mexico on 22 April 2010. Deepwater Horizon may also refer to: The Deepwater Horizon explosion on 20 April 2010 The Deepwater Horizon oil spill from 20 April to 25 July 2010 Economic… …   Wikipedia

  • Deepwater Horizon explosion — This article is about the explosion. For the drilling rig and oil spill, see Deepwater Horizon (disambiguation). Deepwater Horizon explosion Anchor handling tugs and platform supply vessels combat the fir …   Wikipedia

  • Deepwater Horizon — This article is about the drilling rig. For the explosion and oil spill, see Deepwater Horizon (disambiguation). Deepwater Horizon semi submersible drilling rig. Career …   Wikipedia

  • Deepwater Horizon litigation — Litigation due to the loss of the Deepwater Horizon and resulting oil spill commenced shortly after the initial loss of the rig in April 2010. A large number of claims and class actions have already been filed, although many claims are expected… …   Wikipedia

  • Oil spill — A squid after an oil spill Oil Sick from th …   Wikipedia

  • Oil spill governance in the United States — This article covers oil spill governance under United States federal law. Contents 1 Introduction 2 Timeline of key events 3 Governance framework 3.1 Legislation governing oil spill …   Wikipedia

  • Deepwater Horizon — in Brand Allgemeines Klasse: Deepwater (Bohrplattform) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”