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Gulf Oil Spill Nearing Loop Current

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the gettin-loopy-wid-it dept.

Earth 334

An anonymous reader writes "Per The Weather Channel's tropical expert Dr. Richard Knabb, 'based on satellite images, model simulations, and on-site research vessel reports, I think it is reasonable to conclude that the oil slick at the surface is very near or partially in the Loop Current. The Loop Current is responsible in the first place for extending that stream of oil off to the southeast in satellite imagery. With its proximity to the northern edge of the Loop Current it may be only a matter of weeks or even days before the ocean surface oil is transported toward the Florida Keys and southeast Florida.'" Other experts are a little more cautious: "We know the oil has not entered the Loop Current," Coast Guard Rear Admiral Mary Landry said at a news conference Monday afternoon. "A leading edge sheen is getting close to it, but it has not entered the Loop Current. The larger volume of oil is several miles from the Loop Current."

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Well that's just... (1)

the_one_wesp (1785252) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251220)

slick!

Oil at Key West already. (4, Informative)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251222)

I think this story is a little old now, oil is already at Key West.

Coast Guard: Tar Balls Found Off Key West, Fla.

POSTED: Monday, May 17, 2010
UPDATED: 11:26 pm EDT May 17, 2010

KEY WEST, Fla. -- The U.S. Coast Guard says 20 tar balls have been found off Key West, Fla., but the agency stopped short of saying whether they came from a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Some 5 million gallons of crude has spewed into the Gulf and tar balls have been washing ashore in several states along the coast.

Scientists are worried that oil is getting caught in a major ocean current that could carry it through the Florida Keys and up the East Coast.

The Coast Guard says the Florida Park Service found the tar balls on Monday during a shoreline survey. The balls were 3-to-8 inches in diameter.

Coast Guard Lt. Anna K. Dixon said no one at the station in Key West was qualified to determine where the tar balls originated. They have been sent to a lab for analysis.

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

How old are they? (5, Interesting)

Two99Point80 (542678) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251408)

There's a lot of discussion about this over at dailykos - apparently tarballs take a while to form, as opposed to the brownish goo seen on the "60 Minutes" piece. So if they're actually tarballs they're not from this release of oil. They're being analyzed.

Re:How old are they? (5, Funny)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251606)

Yup, I read that discussion with interest. Apparently the "tarballs" are actually globs of nano-sized Black Helicopters created under the Majestic-12 program at Area 51 by Haliburton on orders from the Tea Party and their New World Order masters, the Lizard Man Kings of the Houses of Saud and Bush.

Admittedly I kind of skimmed the comments, and in fact I wasn't sure that was the tarballs article - it could have been any DailyKos story.

Re:How old are they? (3, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251740)

Those guys are morons.

Everybody knows that Haliburton's patented petro-evil technology is the best in the business for artificially triggering earthquakes near impoverished nations as a pretext for the militarized export of neoliberal capitalism; but if you want nano-sized Black Helicopters, you need the nanotech that SAIC acquired when the reverse-engineered the Roswell Grey artefacts under contract from the Rand corporation...

Re:How old are they? (1)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251754)

And you know this how? The well has been leaking for a month now.

"About a half dozen tar balls had been collected by Saturday afternoon at Dauphin Island, Coast Guard chief warrant officer Adam Wine said in Mobile. Authorities planned to test the substance but strongly suspected it came from the oil spill."

http://www.wdsu.com/money/23492078/detail.html [wdsu.com]

That was from May 7th!

I think it's safe to say the tar balls that have reached the Keys are from the BP Oil Spill.

How far to the Gulf Stream? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251418)

I wonder how long will it take for nature to deliver that oil at the British Petroleum backyard.

Re:Oil at Key West already. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251576)

I think this story is a little old now

This. We real Linux geeks have been using tarballs since the 70s and BP comes along does it on a massive and claims it as something new. I'm sure they've even gone out and gotten patents on it (just because you add "in the water" doesn't make it patentable, goddammit!). I bet M$ put them up to it, the bastards.

Re:Oil at Key West already. (3, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251760)

On the plus side, with recent advances in DNA computing, we should just be able to introduce bzip2-capable e. coli into the environment, which will shrink the tarballs to a more manageable size in no time...

Re:Oil at Key West already. (1)

solevita (967690) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251704)

the agency stopped short of saying whether they came from a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

I guess that's the important thing, in your own quoted text, that you forgot to take into account.

Re:Oil at Key West already. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251954)

Nah, those tar balls are just grease hispanic illegal aliens trying to get ashore in Florida.
You betcha we gonna burn those Hispanic motherfuckers back to Mexico! Drill, baby, Drill...

usual post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251224)

Cmdr Taco is gay

On top vs Under (1)

carp3_noct3m (1185697) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251230)

I wonder with both statements, if they refer to just what they can see from the surface, or what is under the surface. Just because a surface slick may be close to the loop, the majority of the oil may not be close at all, and vice verse. Either way its not good.

Nuke it. (4, Interesting)

epiphani (254981) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251234)

I'm no geologist or really much of a scientist at all, but I recall the nuke thread and didn't really get to ask the question: why is nuking this oil well a bad idea? Everyones' initial response was "nuke it? haha, that's preposterous!" but I didn't really see an explanation of why its not a viable option?

Assuming it worked at stopping the continuing spill, what would be the negative effects? Assuming it didn't, what would be the negative effects of trying?

Re:Nuke it. (4, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251252)

Assuming it worked at stopping the continuing spill, what would be the negative effects?

British Petroleum would lose the well permanently and have to drill a new one.

--
BMO

Re:Nuke it. (4, Insightful)

Walterk (124748) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251302)

Oh boo hoo? Given the choice between losing the well and having the well spill all of it's contents into the ocean and causing havoc on the environment in the Gulf, Florida, the Atlantic and possibly around Europe once it gets into the Gulf Stream, I think we should deprive BP of a few billion dollars.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Interesting)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251344)

They're already in the process of plugging the well permanently. Unless I'm interpreting this plan incorrectly, this will also create two new wellheads (although I'm not sure that they will be usable as production wells).

In any event, the currently leaking well was for exploration purposes only.

We also want to prevent something like this [wikipedia.org] from happening.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251516)

That doesn't even look like a big problem to me in comparison.

It seems much easier to tap energy from that crater than to do what they are having to do to plug the Gulf well.

Of course they should figure out if they would actually get significant energy from it. If yes, do some seismic studies to have a guess at how much gas is left, and whether there are any more "surprising" caverns under the surface that they might wish to avoid...

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251932)

This is a joke...

No wonder the climate has been warming the last 40 years! Someone lit off a big torch in Derweze!

Re:Nuke it. (3, Insightful)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251278)

And what exactly do you think that a nuke will do?

The problem is that there is a massive oil reserve deep underground that is under extreme pressure, but contained by rock and dirt. BP has tapped into that reserve with basically a giant straw and now that straw is leaking. Detonating a nuclear bomb near the leak could open that hole up wider allowing much, much oil to flow past.

Furthermore, AFAIK, the effects of a nuclear bomb on underwater sea life are basically unknown. And instead of the nuclear fallout landing on the ground near the explosion, as it would in an above ground explosion, here the fallout would be free to travel in the ocean currents.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Insightful)

tnk1 (899206) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251316)

What happens when you hit underwater sea life with a nuke?

The same thing that happens to anything else.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251330)

What happens when you hit underwater sea life with a nuke?

The same thing that happens to anything else.

And we don't want green, muscular, lobsters?

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251536)

I suspect the nuke won't be done open sea. They'll probably dig a shaft close to the oil shaft, deep enough to contain the blast. That's just a guess.

Re:Nuke it. (4, Funny)

solevita (967690) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251358)

What happens when you hit underwater sea life with a nuke?

The same thing that happens to anything else.

Ill-tempered mutated sea bass?

Re:Nuke it. (1)

sunking2 (521698) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251592)

I think this was a scifi Saturday night movie. Giant Killer Piranha or something like that. I think it just ticked them off and then they ate the submarine that tried to nuke them. Not nearly as cool as the shark snagging the 747 out of the sky movie.

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251856)

I asked for sharks with fricken laser beams attached to their heads!

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251486)

What happens when you hit underwater sea life with a nuke?

The same thing that happens to anything else.

It dies?

And that's worse than letting the oil spill kill things?

Re:Nuke it. (4, Informative)

RMH101 (636144) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251336)

I think that it would cause the rock around the bore to fracture, slide, and block the bore. This has been done by the USSR successfully. Google "Petrocalamity".

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Rhaban (987410) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251386)

Furthermore, AFAIK, the effects of a nuclear bomb on underwater sea life are basically unknown.

As opposed to the effects of millions of tons of oil on underwater sea life, wich are very well known: it kills it.

Re:Nuke it. (3, Informative)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251410)

Furthermore, AFAIK, the effects of a nuclear bomb on underwater sea life are basically unknown. And instead of the nuclear fallout landing on the ground near the explosion, as it would in an above ground explosion, here the fallout would be free to travel in the ocean currents.

Those who fail to learn the lessons of history [wikipedia.org] are doomed to repeat it in summer school.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251918)

The question becomes: In which case is the rich gulf fishery more fucked? If it's killed off by a massive and ongoing petrochemical spill, or if the sea life is rendered inedible for decades by radioactivity?

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251472)

The idea is to explode the nuke deep underground to collapse the borehole. This works, but it is far from trivial to do several kilometers under the sea.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251776)

Furthermore, AFAIK, the effects of a nuclear bomb on underwater sea life are basically unknown.

Not so. [wikipedia.org]

Re:Nuke it. (2, Insightful)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251294)

The prospect of a nuke igniting the oil deposit is one of the more persuasive counterarguments. It may be a low probability, but when one of the possible side effects of an experiment is the destruction of life as we know it, that tends to make people shy away from trying it.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251310)

The prospect of a nuke igniting the oil deposit is one of the more persuasive counterarguments. It may be a low probability, but when one of the possible side effects of an experiment is the destruction of life as we know it, that tends to make people shy away from trying it.

There is no oxygen under water, so the oil and gas can not ignite.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251398)

There is no oxygen under water

Remind me, in H2O, what does the O stand for again? Oil?

Re:Nuke it. (4, Funny)

Goaway (82658) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251480)

This is why fire departments warn you to never, ever put water on a fire.

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251726)

Remind me, what's that stuff that comes out of fire hydrants?

Re:Nuke it. (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251774)

It really depends on the fire.

Putting water on some types of fire will just create a giant fireball.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251470)

There is no oxygen under water, so the oil and gas can not ignite.

There most certainly is oxygen under water... And one of the major concerns with this oil spill is that it is depleting the oxygen - possibly leading to the creation of a dead zone.

It is also possible for things to burn underwater.

I'm not suggesting that we're going to wind up with a big ol' submarine fireball... But just saying "duh, it's underwater, it can't burn" isn't really accurate.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251566)

And one of the major concerns with this oil spill is that it is depleting the oxygen - possibly leading to the creation of a dead zone.

I thought the GoM was already a giant dead zone from all the fertilizer leaking down the Mighty Mississippi? I could swear I've seen satellite pics of the GoM with giant black dead zones.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251732)

I thought the GoM was already a giant dead zone from all the fertilizer leaking down the Mighty Mississippi? I could swear I've seen satellite pics of the GoM with giant black dead zones.

Certain portions are definitely dead zones. I believe there's a seasonal dead zone at the mouth of the Mississippi, for example.

Certain portions are definitely not dead zones. There's some very good fishing around the Florida/Alabama region, for example.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251836)

One of the main concerns about this oil spill has been the economic and environmental impact on some of America's most fertile fishing grounds.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Aqualung812 (959532) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251886)

I thought the GoM was already a giant dead zone

Yet somehow, an overwhelming majority of seafood consumed in the USA comes from this region. More dead zones are a bad thing.

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251340)

We can't do it without Bruce Willis! That is why!

Re:Nuke it. (1)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251346)

No, you fool! You'll awaken Godzilla!

Re:Nuke it. (2, Insightful)

nomaddamon (1783058) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251432)

Russia has experimented with nuking underwater oil-spills and has been rather successful (they managed to close the well on 4 of 5 tries). (http://translate.google.com/translate?js=y&prev=_t&hl=et&ie=UTF-8&layout=1&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.kp.ru%2Fdaily%2F24482%2F640124%2F&sl=ru&tl=en) The problem with this one is the massive oil reserve under the seabed. Should it rupture and release billions of barrels of oil that is under immense pressure, a Yellowstone scale extinction event would occur. Whatever the actual leak size is (5000 barrels according to official sources, 25000-80000 according to expert opinions based on videos or 165000+ according to original disaster plan (prior to creating the site, BP provided documentation to government showing that it would take at least 165000 barrels/day leak for the oil spill to reach the shore)) the damage it will do, unplugged for another 10 years is not comparable to accidentally releasing it all at the same time.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Interesting)

Goaway (82658) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251456)

but I didn't really see an explanation of why its not a viable option?

1. I doubt anyone has nukes designed to function at several kilometers underwater. One would have to be constructed first.

2. You don't just set the nuke off near the hole and hope for the best. You drill a hole into the ground, insert the nuke, and seal the hole, and then explode it to collapse the drill hole. Thus, you need to drill this hole.

Both of these take a lot of time, and there are many, many detail which may not be feasible.

Re:Nuke it. (2, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251718)

3. The smallest nuke that was historically deployed by the USA was the 155mm artillery shell. Conveniently already round, just like a well hole. And about 7 inches across. But I believe its officially out of the arsenal. You'll probably need a bigger hole, think goatse size gaping hole. But to kill the well with drilling mud, you only "need" like 2 inches or so diameter. So its going to take way the heck longer to drill the well to place the nuke, than to drill a simple mud-kill well. Why not shut the well down sooner by not using a nuke?

4. Before setting off the nuke, you need to backfill the hole all they way, or all you've made is a better constructed tap to leak out of. Why not shut the well down sooner by not using a nuke?

5. The best way to increase oil flow is to set off explosive charges in a well. A nuke is a heck of a big explosive. But I thought you were trying to plug the well, not make it flow more? If the nuke fails, the flow rate will be way the heck higher, but the conventional solution is risk-free.

6. Best results if you get the nuke within say 100 feet of the wellbore. Conveniently that was the best the Russians could hope for at that time with their crude (bad pun) directional drilling technology. Heck bad drilling is probably why 1 out of 6 (or whatever) tries failed. We can directional drill with pinpoint accuracy. Just two decades ago, directional drilling to hit a well and mud-kill it was interesting, but now its no big deal. Of course, the Russians couldn't intersect, so they compromised and used a big nuke instead. But we don't need the nuke, because we can intercept the bore no problemo... Why add the extra step of the nuke, after a perfectly adequate modern American directional boring job already killed the well?

7. Nuke only worked 1 in 6 times. Intercepting and mud-killing the well always works 100% of the time, very old tried and true technology. Nuke is much more risky, and the last thing this needs is increased chance of failure.

8. If the nuke fails, all hope is realistically lost of ever controlling the well. The formation will drain out before we can get in there, repair the damage from the nuke, and try to plug. Very high stakes and the casino has rigged the odds against us. A fools wager.

So the nuke is slower, more expensive, failure mode is incredibly dangerous, much less reliable... Why use a nuke again?

Re:Nuke it. (1)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251494)

I'm not certain that nuking the oil well is actually a bad idea.

It might be a good idea... It might not...

Nukes allow you to pack an awful lot of explosive power into a very small package, which may be exactly what we need. Or maybe it isn't.

The problem is that as soon as you say the word "nuke" everyone freaks out.

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251618)

Why not just 10 or 20 or 100 tons of TNT...or whatever explosive the Navy uses. TNT will be negatively buoyant, even at that depth. A good demolitions prep could make it directional to focus the shock wave down. They could put it in another concrete shell if they want, but it seems that something *significant* like this should be in the works instead these soda-straw stop-gap measures.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251752)

I think the problem with a nuke is more political than practical. This administration (which depends heavily on environmentalists for support) is already taking flack from the environmental left for having advocated more offshore drilling and for this accident. Using a nuke to seal it (especially if they weren't absolutely sure it would actually work), would be tantamount to Barack Obama holding up a giant sign reading "Don't vote for me next time" to a good chunk of his constituency. Contrary to what most nutball right-wingers think, Obama has been a very moderate president in most matters, and has already alienated a lot of the far-left wing of his party. The lst thing he needs is a failed nuclear blast in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, on top of an already failed oil rig.

Re:Nuke it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251862)

negative effect is that the leak gets blown larger (accidentally, of course) and then the oil reserve which is potentially the size of the gulf of mexico is released into the ocean much more rapidly.

from there, that much oil would cause catastrophic breakdown of the ocean ecology, which is tied to all of earth's ecology --- and thus catastrophic consequences all around.

that's the fear.

I don't know why they haven't put a big barbed 'cork-like' thing on a submarine and just rammed it in to at least slow it dramatically....

Alternatively they could roll up like 100 big oil barges with 100 'straws' run by 100 pumps... and just put the straws in the general area and just GO GO GO at it.... once the slurry gets up into the barge, the oil and water will more easily separate and the lower layer can be released back to the ocean.

but what do I know.. i'm actually just some guy with quick brainstorming. I dunno why their first answer, the concrete dome, sounded viable --- its far more complicated and yet prone to failure (having only one mode of operation)..... I like the straws technique because even if some fail, you've got others that might still be working.

Re:Nuke it. (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251952)

Everyones' initial response was "nuke it? haha, that's preposterous!" but I didn't really see an explanation of why its not a viable option

I also didn't see any explanation of why capturing an asteroid and stuffing it in the hole is not a viable option.

Aren't we supposed to get the explanation on why it IS a viable option before getting the explanations why it's NOT?

As much as I enjoy huge explosions that happen elsewhere, I'll need to get a little more clarity on how a nuclear detonation will stop oil from gushing out of a hole in the bottom of the sea before I throw my support behind the idea. Also, I'd like to know if it's possible that the nuke could accidentally make the hole bigger.

Miles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251246)

Several miles hunh? I feel perfectly safe.

temporary reassurance (3, Insightful)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251256)

"A leading edge sheen is getting close to it, but it has not entered the Loop Current. The larger volume of oil is several miles from the Loop Current."

Oh, so the inevitable hasn't happened yet. That's so reassuring.

Well said! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251662)

If we were ready to go to Iraq and kill like 200K iraqis for the oil there - I think the least we can do is sacrifice the beaches of keywest to tarballs!!

Honestly - being far away - I dont care what happens to Fl or the Gulf. A mess in the gulf of mexico, to me has the same importance as something in the gulf counties. unimportant!

Good. Now it will leave the Gulf and move out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251264)

The Atlantic can take a little oil spill no problem. BP has saved us again!

Re:Good. Now it will leave the Gulf and move out (4, Interesting)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251430)

From what Wikipedia says, this may not be BP's fault. Halliburton (the company famous for Iraq oil controversies including lying to the US administration) were cementing the well just a day before (by their own accounts). Transocean own the rig (renting it to BP) and their chief executive explained the cause of the incident saying, "there was a sudden, catastrophic failure of the cement, the casing or both."

Re:Good. Now it will leave the Gulf and move out (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251602)

If you hire the lowest bidder contractor to do your dirty (or illegal) work, and they mess it up (or get caught), it's still your responsibility.

Re:Good. Now it will leave the Gulf and move out (4, Interesting)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251772)

Oh, BP is responsible for SO MUCH MORE than that. That company used to be known as the Anglo-Persian Oil Company, it drilled in Iran for decades before they got rid of the Shah. In 1951, when Iran finally had a democratically elected government, which decided to follow the wishes of the people and to nationalize the Oil fields and then provide APOC with a contract, which it hated, APOC went crying to UK and US politicians, and then the Democratically Elected Government of Iran was removed through a coup and APOC was once again free to do as it pleased, it got almost the contract that it wanted, it was less though, because there was just too much pressure from the people of Iran, who I think hated the guts of APOC.

APOC renamed to BP at that time probably as a way to whitewash its image, you know: Accenture (formerly known as Anderson Consulting) did the same after Enron.

BP is a very old and I would say evil entity, what I mean is that the processes in the company are such that from the outside the results of its work look evil.

Re:Good. Now it will leave the Gulf and move out (1)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251792)

Old news. Yes Halliburton is responsible for the well head and they are under investigation.

However, BP decided against emergency shut off valves because, "it cost to much." BP also lobbied the government that they did not need environmental impact studies or a detailed plan on how to clean up an oil spill since they claimed 165,000 gallons of oil would never reach the coast.

BP is very much at fault!

A plus? (4, Interesting)

Cornwallis (1188489) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251272)

Look at the bright side. Now the satellite imagery of the loop current will be much easier to read with the oil tracer.

Whip it good (1)

Combatso (1793216) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251308)

Perhaps if we got lots of boats with lots of fast spinning proppelers, we could whip it in to Cool-Whip. Then seafood will be extra tasty and tourism will go up.

drill baby drill! (4, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251320)

what was that crass slogan again?

why don't i hear it anymore?

meant to appeal to low iq dimwits as a valid solution to the energy crisis? you know, buy us a couple more months of soccer moms in SUVs in suburban sprawl, before the inevitable? hey, what's a little ecosystem destruction when we need to go to walmart to buy plastic crap and mcdonalds to shovel more calories in our distended waistlines? why's it smell like oil near the beach mommy?

as the economy recovers, as newly rich brazilian, chinese, and indian economies begin to suck energy like the west, as the oil only gets deeper and deeper... welcome to a near future, 2015, 2020: $10 a gallon gas. except those brazilian, chinese, and indians: they are already seeking alternatives. you know like nuclear... NOT IN MY BACKYARD!

you were warned back in the 1970s. but you kept funding the saudis, who kept building wahhabi madrassas in pakistan, and you got 9/11. but you still didn't see the writing on the wall. in fact, you thought it was a good excuse to secure some iraqi oil

now you're destroying your own shorelines, and still living in denial, still a hopeless rationalizing junkie addict

when the inevitable comes, when we can no longer afford the gas guzzling lifestyle, many of you will say "who saw that coming?"

plenty of us did, jackass

Re:drill baby drill! (2, Insightful)

Nyder (754090) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251420)

what was that crass slogan again?

why don't i hear it anymore?

meant to appeal to low iq dimwits as a valid solution to the energy crisis? you know, buy us a couple more months of soccer moms in SUVs in suburban sprawl, before the inevitable? hey, what's a little ecosystem destruction when we need to go to walmart to buy plastic crap and mcdonalds to shovel more calories in our distended waistlines? why's it smell like oil near the beach mommy?

as the economy recovers, as newly rich brazilian, chinese, and indian economies begin to suck energy like the west, as the oil only gets deeper and deeper... welcome to a near future, 2015, 2020: $10 a gallon gas. except those brazilian, chinese, and indians: they are already seeking alternatives. you know like nuclear... NOT IN MY BACKYARD!

you were warned back in the 1970s. but you kept funding the saudis, who kept building wahhabi madrassas in pakistan, and you got 9/11. but you still didn't see the writing on the wall. in fact, you thought it was a good excuse to secure some iraqi oil

now you're destroying your own shorelines, and still living in denial, still a hopeless rationalizing junkie addict

when the inevitable comes, when we can no longer afford the gas guzzling lifestyle, many of you will say "who saw that coming?"

plenty of us did, jackass

Yes, I'll bet you did.

I suppose to prove your point you don't drive, you don't use oil in your house, you have solar panels on the roof and of course, you use all natural stuff, no plastic or anything made from oil?

No? Then stfu.

i live in midtown manhattan (-1, Troll)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251492)

i don't own a car, i walk to work. i walk everywhere

city dwellers weigh on average 15 pounds less than suburbanites. because the puss bag fat fucking suv gas guzzling assholes probably get in the car to get their mail at the end of the driveway

this is in fact the future: dense urban living

suburban sprawl, disconnected gridlocked lifestyles and destruction of our forests for plastic mcmansions is the past. already, in the last real estate crash, it has been established that those houses nearest train stations lost less value than those out in car dependent sprawl

so you stfu, ignorant jackass: there is a reckoning coming. as the economy recovers, gas prices will begin a creep up that will never go down

plan now, or suffer later, your choice

Re:i live in midtown manhattan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251636)

this is in fact the future: dense urban living

Did that during college: It's great and all, but I prefer to not have people peeing on my front door every weekend.

there is a reckoning coming. as the economy recovers, gas prices will begin a creep up that will never go down

As opposed to Manhattan rents?

take your pick: (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251698)

high rent and people peeing on your front door, or $15/ gallon gasoline and lyme disease

the suburbs are an endangered species. really. plan ahead now

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

Combatso (1793216) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251496)

awh.. dont take away his sense of smug self satisfaction.. he rides his bike to work... on sunny days, when hes not too tired... and his 'no war for oil' sticker is making a difference! it really is

i am smug (1, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251610)

i live in midtown manhattan, i walk everywhere. i don't own a car. no bike: i hate bikes, dangerous

and i am the future. as oil prices creep up inevitably, inexorably, and permanently, the suburbs will die. we'll live like our great granfathers: dense urban centers, lots of public transportation

so you better get used to my smugness, because your children and your grandchildren will be saying exactly what i am saying, "why didn't anyone plan ahead granddad? it was so obvious it was coming. can you walk me to the train granddad?"

plan or suffer, your choice

Re:i am smug (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251674)

I transport fruit and vegetables to your city with my truck. Let's see how long you last if I can no longer do that.

gee i dunno (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251768)

they were building dense cities 4,000 years ago on the nile

whatever is lost for moving food to the city is gained and then some by everyone not needing to drive 2 hours and sit in gridlock every day just to do their business

dense cities are the norm for humanity. dense cities make sense when all you have is sailing ships and mules. when oil goes to $15 a gallon, the cities will contract in size and normalcy will return after 50 years of cheap oil fueled insanity. suburban sprawl is an artificial endangered idiocy

Re:i am smug (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251850)

Hey, I'm talking to you...

Listen, pal. You have annoyed me today. I usually walk on the side of the road to work myself even on rainy days, past a bunch of hobos as there is a camp for released sex offenders a few miles away. What I'm going to do is get in my car for the rest of the week and drive to and from work. Anytime I see you posting here, I am going to get in my car and drive to and from work for the rest of the week. Not all that bad of an option SEEING THAT MOST of AMERICA is not a METROPOLIS with SIDEWALKS PAVED with GOLD and RAINBOWS and CANDY CANES.

I hope that you go see a doctor. The syphilis is getting to your head much in the way that it did for several famous persons. You are of no use to American society, and I hope that you do not try to reproduce because I do not want to see what your offspring would look like. You might as well go to your nearest Golden Gate Bridge which can't be all that far away considering that you are a blatant flamer as well and JUMP OFF IT. Please keep in mind that since no one cares about you--not even your mother--they won't even try recovering your body. And I'm serious about walking to work. I'm going to drive my car to and from work starting tomorrow and ending Friday. How does that work for ya?

Re:i am smug (2, Insightful)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251942)

No, we don't need to get used to your smugness.

We'll just cut off your fucking food supply.

Grow food on the roof of your highrise. You should be able to produce enough to support about 10% of the people in your building.

Here's a shovel you can use. To grow food, and later, to fight for it.

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

ZekoMal (1404259) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251556)

Yeah, because if you don't live off the grid 100%, then oil will therefore last forever and we should just ignore all problems down the road!

-cough-

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251898)

... we should just ignore all problems down the road!

Well, basically, yes. For two reasons.

Its very much like facing your own mortality, or mortality in general. Folks whom are a little further along the grieving path or however you want to describe it, tend to get tired of hearing people stuck at the "panic" and/or "bargaining" stage VERY loudly declaring their location on the path. To everyone before them on the path, they make no sense or at best are annoying. You're at the bargaining stage of the grief process, that's just great, and just why should everyone not personally connected to you care what stage you're at?

The other way its pointless, is modern american society is focused around generating fear of one issue to sneakily implement some completely unrelated policy. I think it sucks. Why feed the beast? If the only reason to pay attention and get scared is so some bastard can sneak in a block of net neutrality or put in airport scanners or something else equally irrelevant to the problem, then F them, ignore them. Being a coward, outside of wartime, used to merely be a moral failing, but now it causes actual active cultural decay. Going thru life as a coward is a mental disease like any other, and the politicians whom prey off those mentally ill constituents are just bastards, so don't play their game.

Re:drill baby drill! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251424)

Im not an expert, but I feel like a nuclear leak would be just as bad as an oil spill.

i'm not an expert (2, Informative)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251550)

but japan and france have been nuclear dependent for decades, and i don't see many oil spills off their shores

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power_in_France [wikipedia.org]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_power_in_Japan [wikipedia.org]

additionally, a lot of anti-nuclear opinions are based on 1960s era nuclear tech. new pebble bed reactors, air cooled: the staff can just walk away from these things, no melt down, no china syndrome

thorium can be used as a source (very abundant) if uranium (mined domestically) gets low. and breeder reactors can turn the waste, even old waste that exists today, into 1/10th the volume, that is only mildly radioactive, for only a century

and if we haven't figured out fusion by the time the uranium and thorium and oil runs out, well then we deserve to be doomed to the collapse of civilization

because i hope you realize, if we don't have a coherent energy source plan, as oil gets deeper and more consumed, that that is what we are headed for

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

bwalling (195998) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251554)

Go look up what happened at Three Mile Island. It was contained, just like it was supposed to be. Problem was, everyone panicked and we quit building nuclear plants for like 30 years. Now, we're behind on doing it because of the fear.

Currently, none of the major energy alternatives are clean. Nuclear has that nasty waste that we don't have a good solution for (though we should get on with reprocessing like other countries have been doing). Coal results in coal ash, which is possibly worse than nuclear waste. Oil is a total mess. Solar is nice, but expensive and still a bit inefficient. Wind is nice, but still a bit expensive and inefficient. Coal and solar both have geographic restrictions. Hydro is nice, but not everyone lives near sufficient geography. Conservation would be helpful, but the obesity epidemic suggests that Americans have little self control. To make conservation happen would likely require the introduction of taxes, which politicians are too scared to do.

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

laejoh (648921) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251518)

why's it smell like oil near the beach mommy?

Kilgore: Napalm, son. Nothing else in the world smells like that.

[kneels] Kilgore: I love the smell of napalm in the morning. You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for 12 hours. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn't find one of 'em, not one stinkin' dink body. The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like

[sniffing, pondering]

Kilgore: victory.

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

ryanvm (247662) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251552)

Spill, baby, spill!

Re:drill baby drill! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251686)

Amen.

You forgot to mention 'cover the landscape with wind turbines' ...
Since 1973, energy strategy in North America has consisted of putting the thinking end so far up the other end the leadership has turned into Klein bottles.

Re:drill baby drill! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251700)

Look on the bright side. Now you have an outlet for all your self-righteous indignation. Nothing feels quite as good to someone trying to run other people's lives as saying "I told you so!"

i don't want to say "i told you so" (5, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251848)

i want you to listen to reason: we need to get off oil now, or we will suffer

and you react like i'm trying to run your life?

no, i'm trying to wake you up from your ignorant complacency, and you are reacting like a teenager told by his mom he needs to stop playing videogames and start studying. that indolent sloth of a teenager would then say 'Look on the bright side. Now you have an outlet for all your self-righteous indignation. Nothing feels quite as good to someone trying to run other people's lives as saying "I told you so!"'

so you are basically saying that american energy policy is akin to a fat lazy useless teenager with a sense of spoiled entitlement... but i'm in the wrong because i'm pointing out the simple obvious truth that we're on the wrong path? is that your message to me?

Re:drill baby drill! (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251822)

That crass slogan was the result of people listening to an Alaskan politician on oil matters (might as well ask a Texan politician too, while you're at it). You don't get advice from someone with such a vested interest in the matter. That's like treating the governor of Nebraska as an objective adviser on the question of whether we need more wheat subsidies.

Damn (1)

ChinggisK (1133009) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251384)

Guess I better go to the beach today while it's still a good place to be.

Streamlines (4, Informative)

cosm (1072588) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251388)

If you have a google account, check out this link [google.com] . It adds the ArcGIS Server - Message in a Bottle applet to your google maps. Click the map and watch the "bottle" travel the path of the streamlines. Do it a couple times around the area of the oil spill and get a rough idea of the possible trajectories. Yes there are significant differences between an oil slick on top of the water and a glass bottle, but I have yet to find anywhere else public-ish facing where you can dynamically plot stream line points for free. Map experts/enthusiast?

Don't scaremonger, focus on the positive. (2, Funny)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251392)

The press is focussing too much on the "what if" and not the "what is."

First of all, how do we even know that the oil is harmful? There haven't been any long-term scientific studies on oil spills of this much oil of this kind. Why, for all we know, it might be beneficial! We shouldn't rush to judgement until this has been properly studied.

Second, let's stop using loaded terms like "pollution." Economists say we should measure the value of something by what people are willing to pay for it. Oil is worth $72 a barrel. The price of enough Instant Ocean to mix up a barrel of seawater is $8.72. So let's stop talking about oil as "polluting" seawater, let's be rational and unemotional and say that the oil is "enriching" the seawater.

Third, hasn't it occurred to anyone that this oil might prevent the harmful sea surges that did so much damage to New Orleans during the Katrina disaster? Let's stop berating BP when all they're really doing is pouring oil on the troubled waters.

Re:Don't scaremonger, focus on the positive. (1)

gringer (252588) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251570)

First of all, how do we even know that the oil is harmful?
Second, let's stop using loaded terms like "pollution."
Third, hasn't it occurred to anyone that this oil might prevent the harmful sea surges

...

[that's a strong, emphasised "speechless"]

Re:Don't scaremonger, focus on the positive. (1)

Bigbutt (65939) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251840)

Cool. Sarah Palin has an account on Slashdot!

Hey, how's that "drill, baby, drill" workin' for ya?

[John]

bologna (5, Interesting)

nadaou (535365) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251394)

Other experts are a little more cautious: "We know the oil has not entered the Loop Current," Coast Guard Rear Admiral Mary Landry said at a news conference Monday afternoon. "A leading edge sheen is getting close to it, but it has not entered the Loop Current. The larger volume of oil is several miles from the Loop Current."

I think you got a word wrong there. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Mary Landry is not an other expert in this area at all. Any other [scientific] expert would never make such an absolutist statement, and a few miles is within a hour or two's drift (*spread is not necessarily the same rate as the water currents) so by the time her statement hit the papers it would already be false. And who knows what the hell's going on subsurface where the satellites don't see?

"Dispersal" of a slick into a cloud of droplets does not mean the cloud-plume itself has or will dispersed.

And why has the US gov't not put its foot down and demanded that the invited but then uninvited (by BP the day before they thought the dome would work) Wood's Hole team be allowed to measure the flow rate with the instruments that BP claimed did not exist? [NY Times 16 May] Even if there's nothing much we can do with that number now, by having better data about the size of the spill and measuring the effects over the coming months and years we can better understand and plan future responses. I see what BP has to lose by that number being properly established, but why aren't they being forced to establish it anyway?

Re:bologna (2, Insightful)

Combatso (1793216) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251436)

Any other [scientific] expert would never make such an absolutist statement,

Unless they were 'climate change' science experts, then its okay to make absolutist statements.

Umm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251450)

No, it's not. Obama is president. He wouldn't let that happen. Presidents control the weather right? Bush caused Katrina.

Bring on the Death Penalty for CEOs... (0)

willyg (159173) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251464)

Seriously. If the CEO of a major corporation, supposedly entrusted ( by the consent of the Federal Government) with safeguarding the environment while trying to make a buck on underground minerals, isn't held responsible for that corporation's actions, then we can expect to see a lot more of these environmental catastrophes.

Washington, are you paying attention ???

I think It's the only way to bring some much needed accountability to these problems...

Mostly BP's fault (4, Informative)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251542)

Rachel Maddow has shown an interview named BP's haste lays waste to Gulf waters [msn.com] with a whistleblower from BP who explained that just a little before the disaster a BP manager told Transocean manager to do the work of putting in the corks into the well faster, so that the pumping of oil could be done faster. Aparently the Transocean manager was against it and they had an argument and BP won.

So it's mostly BP's fault, but I think still Transocean should not have complied with this clear violation of the procedure.

Yeah... (3, Interesting)

yoshi_mon (172895) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251546)

Was there any ever real doubt that a spill of this magnitude was not going to reach the loop?

Here in Fla we get to deal with all sorts of fun naturally occurring things. And I don't really begrudge those things much like those people who live inland in tornado ally don't really begrudge mother nature for those things.

But this...gah. And then on top of it I have to watch the super rich play the blame game? Fuck you. Seriously, fuck YOU.

Re:Yeah... (0, Offtopic)

Bragador (1036480) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251634)

Fuck you. Seriously, fuck YOU.

Me? Why? :(

Minimal Impact? (2, Interesting)

sking (42926) | more than 4 years ago | (#32251656)

According to NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco, who was interviewed on last night's McNeil Lehrer News Hour [pbs.org] , the oil entering the Loop will have minimal environmental impact in other parts of the Gulf. She opines that "By the time the oil is in the loop current, it's likely to be very, very diluted. And, so, it's not likely to have a very significant impact. It sounds scarier than it is."

troll40re (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32251660)

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