British Petroleum Spill of 2010

Over the past decade our country has experienced many catastrophes that have literally crippled the nation economically, socially, and financially. Most recently, our country has begun another crisis, this time in the Gulf of Mexico. British Petroleum’s underwater pipeline, Deepwater Horizon, catastrophically failed and began spewing hundreds of thousands of barrels of petroleum daily. Currently BP plans to create a relief pipeline to fix the Deepwater Horizon and pay for all the damages that their pipeline is causing.

On the other hand, President Barack Obama is demanding that BP take responsibility and pay for all necessary reparations such as cleaning the coastal shores and aid the people affected by the oil spill. However, President Obama is not taking responsibility and is slowly making progress to clean the gulf and repair the underwater pipeline. President Obama has been utilizing the help of the National Guard, the coast guard and as many resources as possible from the shore states.

The various state governors have also helped as directly as possible to prevent anymore damage to their shores. President Obama has also considered on enacting a moratorium on oil drilling. The President must take drastic action to solve the problem in the gulf and prevent any permanent damage from happening, while being careful not to damage the already fragile United States. Currently, President Obama is organizing efforts to sanitize the gulf and prevent anymore damage against the nation’s economy and the many ecosystems, while British Petroleum stands by and waits for a bill.

President Barack Obama has much in store for cleaning the gulf and protecting the nation’s economy. President Obama has been exhausting all possible resources and focusing them on containing and cleaning the gulf. Obama has deployed the use of “nearly 30,000 personnel who are working across four states to contain and clean up the oil” (President Obama’s).

Obama has been able to organize a large scale task force to continually clean the water and protect the shorelines as well as the wildlife. Not only has the President been able to recruit such a large force of ordinary citizens, but he has “authorized the deployment of over 17,000 National Guard members along the coast” (President Obama’s).

Barack Obama is behind the wheel of this massive movement to rescue the gulf and has shown true leadership by rallying huge amounts of support towards sanitizing the gulf. Hopefully, the leak will be able to be contained within the next few weeks, otherwise “cleanup efforts could take up to 2012” and currently “Six hundred animal species are at risk” (Xinhua). Besides focusing on repairing the Deepwater Horizon, a major focus is to protect and prevent any further damage to the environment. Researchers have been studying the effects of deep sea oil plumes on wildlife and the ocean.

New information is being learned for future disasters involving deepwater pipelines. Also, scientists have been developing a better, less toxic dispersant to aid in cleaning the oil. On the down side, no matter how strong the efforts, many ecosystems and species are being destroyed by this wide spread oil spill. In an effort to prevent anymore spills of this scale, President Obama has enacted a short term moratorium until a better method is developed for deepwater drilling. Since the beginning of the explosion President Obama has halted all oil and gas operations, “but the new standards will allow drilling in water that is less than 500 feet deep” (New York Times).

This illustrates how President Obama is taking proactive steps to never allowing such a disaster to happen in the future. Obama is taking a risk in placing such stress on the already delicate economy, because gas prices will sky rocket when oil and gas operations are suspended. Yet, Obama is helping our future by allowing time to understand and develop safer ways to sustain deepwater drilling. So far, President Obama has lead our nation during the current catastrophe and now the nation is waiting on British Petroleum to pay the enormous bill.

It has been over two months since the Deepwater Horizon failed and spewed hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil into the Gulf. And with thousands of gallons of oil covering the ocean, harmful consequences are guaranteed to follow. Since then, many acts have been violated including the Clean Water Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, the Endangered Species Act, and the Oil Pollution Act (Obama Launches).

Not only is British Petroleum involved but Transocean is considered at fault also. Transocean “owned and operated the rig that exploded” while British Petroleum “owned the well that is responsible for the spill” (Obama Launches). With this in mind, both companies are equally responsible for all the devastation in the Gulf. Not only are these companies facing legal actions, but they are also being pressured to pay for all damages caused by the oil spill.

“The cleanup bill is already more than $1.4 billion, a small fraction of the likely total” (Newsweek). With the increasing price, both the “executives of BP and Transocean are falling over each other to point the finger of blame at somebody else” (Daily Compilation). Both companies don’t want to take the blame because of the massive amount of expenses accumulating on the bill. Also there is a price to pay back to the states that border the Gulf of Mexico for the excessive damages to their shores and wildlife.

Obama said during his speech: “I’ve talked to shrimpers and fishermen who don’t know how they’re going to support their families this year. I’ve seen empty docks and restaurants with fewer customers—even in areas where the beaches are not yet affected. I’ve talked to owners of shops and hotels who wonder when the tourists might start coming back” (President Obama’s). With fishing on a standstill and tourism on a decline, the people of the shoreline states have no way of having a steady income. With this in mind Obama is taking steps toward a safer way of deep ocean oil drilling.

He has ordered the immediate inspection of all deep water operations in the Gulf of Mexico, enforced that no permits will be allowed for drilling new wells without completing the 30-day safety and environmental review, and finally a new examination of the safety and environment procedures for oil and gas exploration and development (Daily Compilation). With this preventative measure, Obama hopes to succeed in never allowing another oil catastrophe like this occur in the future.

Along with Obama, British Petroleum has gone through procedures to stop the oil spill and is still trying to manage the spill 5,000 feet below the ocean surface. Getting anything to go 5,000 feet below the ocean surface is already a huge dilemma, yet British Petroleum has maneuvered their way around this obstacle and has succeeded in reaching that depth. One of the procedures that have been used was the use of an underwater robot. This robot was remotely controlled from the surface of the ocean. The aim of the robot was to make two precise cuts on the pipe, so a cap that was connected to a riser would send the oil to the recovery ships.

After countless hours of tedious work, the cap succeeded and decreased the amount of oil spewing into the ocean (Obama Launches). Another procedure taken by British Petroleum was the “Junk shot”. The “junk shot...is an injection into the well of materials ranging from rubber tire shards to golf balls” (Christian Science). British Petroleum tended on using the “junk shot”, but it had jeopardized the effectiveness of the “top kill”.

The top kill “involves pumping drilling mud at a rate of 40 to 50 barrels per minute to reduce the pressure of the oil's flow, ultimately stopping it altogether” (Christian Science). The “Top Kill” didn’t go through as planned and failed. With this news, British Petroleum was running out of options.

Bob Dunley, British Petroleum’s managing director, said, “that the company's best hope was not in capping the well but in containing and collecting the oil at the source until a relief well is ready in August”(Christian Science). With no other options left, British Petroleum is depending on the relief wells to stop the oil spill as of right now. BP had tried many difficult procedures and ultimately failed. Even though, most of them hadn’t gone through as planned, the ones that did go through as planned are still helping out this catastrophe. Although, the Gulf of Mexico and The United States are in desperate need of an effective solution before any permanent damage sets in.

Over the entire time of this spill, Obama has been working towards cleaning up the damages from the spill as quickly as possible, while British Petroleum is holding off on paying the staggering bill. Obama has assembled a substantial team to protect the water and the shores as best as possible, while using as much of his political power to limit the possibility of any future oil spills. Also, British Petroleum has been enacting several plans to stop the oil leak, with failure as the ultimate result. British Petroleum has been taking their time in repairing the Deepwater Horizon and only plan to take more time to completely finish the job.

All the while, the shores states have been losing tremendous amounts of revenue with the current catastrophe. The states have been waiting for the oil to be cleaned up so they can return to receiving revenue like before the oil spill. Overall, the whole nation and many other nations bordering the Gulf of Mexico have been losing tremendous amounts of money due to this spill. The only thing the world can do is endure through this catastrophe and remain optimistic like we have in the past.