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July 16, 2010

Gulf blowout capped - will it hold?

Live video by Ustream


So far so good with the cap BP has placed on the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig blowout.   The video above shows it all - no more billowing plume of oil gushing into the Gulf of Mexico.

Kent Wells, a BP vice president, said at a press briefing this morning that pressure is good (meaning high) inside the cap, the Associated Press reports. The pressure test that began Thursday afternoon could go on for up to 48 hours, company officials have said, before deciding if the cap is working and the well is not leaking somewhere else.

Company officials say they're encouraged, but until the tests are complete are withholding any claims of success.  Meanwhile, though, this is the first time oil hasn't been pouring into the Gulf in nearly three months.

To stay abreast of developments, check out these sites:

 - The Daily Glob, a news blog tracking reporting on the blowout response, its cause and consequences (full disclosure, I'm a board member of the Society of Environmental Journalists, which produces this blog)

 - Deepwater Horizon Response, the official website of the unified command of government and private entities working to halt the oil and clean it up

 - BP's Gulf of Mexico Response, the company's website

Posted by Tim Wheeler at 12:15 PM | | Comments (1)


I'm curious if BP is pushing to keep the cap on until the relief wells are completed so there's no final accounting of the flow rate of oil coming out of the leak. It seems like if they ever hooked up the ships capable of capturing all of the oil then the US would have a solid number to calculate damages, but if they don't then BP will get to argue with the US over estimates. Maybe I'm being too conspiratorial here, but I haven't seen any coverage of this issue.

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About the bloggers
Tim WheelerTim Wheeler reports on the environment and Chesapeake Bay. A native of West Virginia, he has focused mainly on Maryland's environment since moving here in 1983. Along the way, he's crewed aboard a skipjack in the bay, canoed under city streets up the Jones Fall from the Inner Harbor, and gone deep underground in a western Maryland coal mine. He loves seafood, rambles in the country and good stories. He hopes to share some here.

Contributor Christy Zuccarini has been blogging about the local DIY craft scene for a year for She brings her pespective on all things handmade to B'More Green, where she will highlight projects you can do yourself as well as crafters who are integrating sustainable methods and materials.

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