Deepwater Oil Spill - Inserting the Transition Spool - and Open Thread

This thread is being closed. Please comment on thread

At about 1 pm (Eastern time) on Sunday, I checked on the feeds, and it appears, using the camera on the BOA ROV 1, that the transition spool has been lowered into place (the old riser was removed at about 3 am this morning) and is now ready to be inserted into the top of the riser.

Flange removed from the well, and the surface awaits the transition spool.

Transition spool approaches the flowing well

I will update as I notice other things of interest - though will be out some of this afternoon.

UPDATE 1. Apparently there was some soccer game or something on this afternoon (Sunday), so I became a bit distracted, and was not watching when the transition spool was seated, some time around 3 pm. Since then they have been tightening the bolts. The next step will be to set the Lower stack on top of the spool, and then lock it in place.

UPDATE 2. The Ocean Intervention ROV 1 keeps looking at a pressure gage as it manipulates around the transition spool.

Pressure gage (which goes up to a pressure of 6,500 to 7,000 psi)

I suspect that this is the pressure in the hydraulics when they do the final tightening of the bolts on the transition spool, to ensure that they are adequately all tightened, since, after looking at the gage, it went over and moved the torque wrench to another bolt.

Torque wrench being moved around the bolts holding the transition spool in place on the BOP.

Obviously assembling the rig is taking a bit longer than I thought, though I think I may have seen the Lower capping stack somewhere around in an earlier shot.

UPDATE 3. (Monday 8:46 am) There is a fair amount of activity going on, but without a script it is hard to see what all of it is - at the moment it appears that they are staring at gages, wondering why there is no oil flowing in the kill line.

And the stack is now on its way down.

Stack being monitored by the Inspiration ROV

Prof. Goose's comment:

New stuff in this introductory comment, 1 JUL 10.

A continued humble and sincere thank you to all who have donated thus far. It will help us pay for the fourth server we brought online to accommodate the increased traffic. (See point 3 below.)

1. The Oil Drum is a special place. We strive to maintain a high signal to noise ratio in our comment threads. Short, unengaging comments, or comments that are off topic, are likely to be deleted without notice. (to be clear--engaging, on point humor and levity, more than welcome.)

We are trying to perform a service to the public here to coordinate smart people who know their stuff with other people who want to learn about what's going on. Promotion of that ideal will be the criteria by which we make our decisions about what stays and what goes.

Flame wars, polemic exchanges, and other content deleterious to the community will be removed, either by an editor or by the community through its moderation process.

2. If you see a problematic comment USE THE COMMENT MODERATION SYSTEM--see the "Flag as inappropriate" and (?) beside it? Learn more there. If you see comments that are questionable after you've done that (that aren't being removed), let us know at the eds email address.

It is up to this community to enforce the norms we have established here (a high signal to noise ratio), keep. it. up.

Our guide to commenting at TOD can be found here: . Please check it out if you are unfamiliar with it, but it is essentially 1) citations welcome (if not necessary), 2) be kind to others, and 3) be nice to the furniture.

3. We have gotten a lot of queries whether this bump in traffic is adding costs to keep the site functioning. Truth is, yes, we are incurring added expenses from these events. It is also true that we try not to beg from you very often as we are not the types to bother you with constant queries.

That being said, if you are inclined to help out, your support is always welcome and very much appreciated. To those who have already given, thank you very much.

You can find the donate button in the top left hand corner of the main page.

4. If you have come here to vet your plan to kill the well, understand that you will be queried on whether or not you have read all the other previous comment threads and all the myriad plans that have already been run by the kind folks in this room; if you have actually read all the comment threads and still think your plan has legs, well, then maybe yours really is the one that will save the Gulf of Mexico.

This is not to say that well considered questions about current attempts and modifications to those attempts are not welcome; they are. But try to place them in context and in what's actually going on, as opposed to your MacGyver dream solution where you have a 10 megaton bomb, an ice pick, and Commander Spock at your side.

5. If you would like to catch up with what's been going on in the last few days, our IRC channel has been maintaining a FAQ, which is an open source log full of information, links, and such. Check it out:

6. Also, if you're looking for live chat to talk about the ROV/LMRP video, etc., and are IRC capable, go to freenode, the channel is #theoildrum

(google MIRC and download it; Hit the lightening bolt and fill in your info; select the server as "freenode" (it is in the server list), hit connect; when connected type /join #theoildrum)

or you can get there just via a browser: / Just enter a nickname and #theoildrum in the boxes; then when connected type /join #theoildrum)

7. Don't be afraid to go back and read the last couple of open threads yesterday and today before you start on this thread. They are really good, and will likely catch you up if you have been out of the loop for a while. We shut down threads when we get to 300-400 comments, as it's really unmanageable. Lots of good stuff in there though.

8. Yes, HO and others have put up many counterarguments to the "DougR" comment. There are many many links, but the first one was here: If you ask in the thread nicely, they will also point you to others.

Sealing cap starting on:

Sealing cap landed:

Inspection tour of newly seated cap revealed an excellent homely on the side of the cap stack:

With a little help from my friends - arms from three different ROVs are helping it settle in place. One in the background on the left, left foreground, and moving in from the right.

Sorry, I want to post this in the discussion below.

fd -- maybe we should form a 4F club here on TOD LOL. I also didn't make the cut in 1969 at a time when so many were avoiding the draft. The only way to "escape" my old neighborhood was the military or getting a job on the Miss. River. Didn't have connections to get a job on the docks so I was raised to be career military. Growing up on a solid diet of old John Wayne movies didn't hurt either. Every time I see the body count update it's easy to see the last 40 years of my life as a bonus because I've always felt I would not have made it back. Two of the guys I grew up with didn't. Very painful thoughts regardless of which side of the fence you fall.

A slight funny side note. Eventually my back problems were fixed. In the late 80's when I was struggling to survive $10 oil I tried to join the Army reserve. They actually put an ad in the paper looking for science background college grads for their NBC unit (nuclear, biological and chemical warfare). The unit didn't deploy such weapons. Their task was to detect such threats on the front line. I figured being a weekend warrior would be fun and the extra bucks didn't hurt either. But I got my application in too late. A few years later they were one of the first units activated and sent to Iraq for the first tissifit. BTW the unofficial symbol for the NBC unit was a small patch with a yellow canary on it. You can probably guess why. So once again I inadvertently dodge that literal bullet.

The Canadian Forces recently upgraded their training in response to a CBRN (chemical/biological/radiological/nuclear) terrorist incident, and we have to be re-certified every two years and/or before deployments. Currently the risk is fairly low, and the guys we are fighting do not have these capacities-- yet.

The biological stuff is the worst, in the sense that it can be fairly easily produced and have terrible impacts. The developers are also at risk however... Folks, you don't even want to know...

Kept up with some of the tech over the years cap...nasty stuff for sure. I still vividly recall films of how they had to struggle with those chem suits in the desert heat.

So instead you mess about with rigs that can blow up, H2S and NG that can do for you - right :) Keep safe.


NAOM -- And don't forget the riskest venture: driving thru S La on a Saturday night..especially right after payday.

Sorry, but that is funny......before my son went to Iraq he was stationed in El Paso and all his buddies would cross the border, I told him Mexico at certain borders was prolly more dangerous than parts of Iraq.

Around here, on New Years it probably is. I like to watch the fireworks but make sure I have concrete over my head. What goes up must come down - and I am not referring to the fireworks.


Well, sometimes good things happen to good people.

To repeat a post placed just as the last batch was closed.

Where is the oil now going?

Venting into the sea, but out of camera shot?

Or being collected by something for transmission to the surface?

Best I've got for now:

BP (BP/ LN) says lowering new cap to Gulf leak, to attach to wellhead later Monday morning - Executive

14:38 12-07-2010
BP (BP/ LN) says collected 8224 barrels of oil in the last 24 hours at the Well

14:37 12-07-2010
- Encountered two problems with helix producer Sunday
- Helix producer still not started up; will start later Monday
- Collected 8,224 barrels of oil in last 24 hours at well

I would say going by BP's description (on their website) of the procedure now in process, that the oil should be gushing out of the top of the "transition spool" currently - just as it was before the transition pipe was installed.

I would also hazard a guess that it's politically not expedient to have camera's show this flow as long as there is an excuse to say that the work being done requires these assets. :>)

Yeah, except that at least half of the ROVs are showing nothing.

Cameras have been showing shots of the flow from the top of the spool's one from a few minutes ago. The white hose sticking into it is dispersant.

The oil is coming out the top of the new piece they put on. Last night they were sticking an instrument into the flow and a BP logo flashed on the screen. It was pretty funny.

A logo to hide the special instrument? Fercrissake. Like their competitors should study this whole experience and imitate BP's expertise.

10K bbl/day are being flared by the Q4000, the rest is escaping from the top of the yellow spool connector. A second connection should have been made by now from the lower BOP to the Helix Producer, and that will ramp up gradually over the next few days.

Somewhat tangential, but ...

Bad news for hurricane prognosticators

Surprisingly Regular Patterns in Hurricane Energy Discovered

ScienceDaily (July 9, 2010) — Researchers at the Mathematics Research Centre and Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona have discovered the mathematical relation between the number of hurricanes produced in certain parts of Earth and the energy they release. The distribution is valid for all series of hurricanes under study, independent of when and where they occurred.

The research, published in Nature Physics, suggests that the evolution of hurricane intensity will be very difficult to predict....

Scientists have discovered that this relation corresponds to a power-law, a precise mathematical formula cyclones obey in a surprising manner, regardless of where on the planet and when they appear.
This fundamental discovery has led researchers to more general conclusions on the behaviour of hurricanes. The first conclusion states that a hurricane's dynamics can be the result of a critical process, therefore making it impossible to predict its intensity.

As a long-time sailor, I've always been wary as to the reliability of weather forecasts and some years ago (2?) I posted a comment in which I illustrated with a couple of specific instances how forecasts of wind conditions could be radically wrong.

Herewith a good rule for sailing: Never bet your life on a forecast of good weather. On the other hand, even a small (say 25 foot) sailboat can survive most hurricanes, provided there is no shore or rock within a few hundred miles downwind. Ocean going sailboats have been designed to survive very strong winds, ever since the time of Columbus. (The high poop decks of his ships was designed to head the boat into the wind even though there was not a shred of canvas on the yards and even if all masts are swept overboard.)

I daresay that those who have worked on offshore drilling and production rigs are also skeptical of forecasts. What surprises me is not that occasional platforms are lost during storms but rather that they usually survive even severe hurricanes--great engineering and construction there.

Ocean going sailboats have been designed to survive very strong winds, ever since the time of Columbus.

Which is why it's extremely unfortunate that somewhere in the 70's or 80's designers started catering to the "Coastal Cruiser/Weekend Racer" which translates roughly to "Cheaply constructed and unseaworthy."

The high poop decks of his ships was designed to head the boat into the wind even though there was not a shred of canvas on the yards and even if all masts are swept overboard.

Just never know what interesting tidbit of knowledge will come up on TOD .. last week it was turbidites, which have just popped up again in a magazine article I'm reading about formations off and on the California coast.

My old wooden schooner sailed through a very strong gail on bare poles, that's what they were designed to do, never even compromised our course which was directly across the wind, parallel to the swell. The waves were so huge, my pregnant wife asked:
"Can't you just slow it down a little?"
Sorry, but that is in higher hands.
I can still feel the rise and the fall.
30,000 lbs of lead in the keel, 10 ft deep.

"the evolution of hurricane intensity will be very difficult to predict...."

However, the politics/business of AGW cultism is not hard to predict;
When the AGW benefiting/dependant scientists/politicians need to gen up more AGW hysteria, they can go to the 'Hurricanes will be dramatically more severe/common" as AGW red meat;
Then when the opposite occurs (as the last 5 years or so), AGW cultist prediction failures are either ignored, or drummed somehow as more proof of the very AGW theories/models which failed so miserably.

There is so much money/power within reach of the AGW proponents/compliant businesses/politicians/scientists/nuts, that we seem well beyond rational/honest science; too many 'scientists' whose salary/grant/power/fame is directly linked to supporting AGW; their careers would be ended if they published against AGW, or even failed to support it.

"the evolution of hurricane intensity will be very difficult to predict...."

However, the politics/business of AGW cultism is not hard to predict;

The article that's quoted here says that this new model has nothing to do with global warming.

Are you capable of commenting without right wing talking points?

Do you seriously believe that the vast majority of the scientific community is afraid of losing careers or are committing some kind of fraud? Do you have a clue how science works?

want to examine why you think the way you do?

I believe in AGW, Peak Phosphorus and the Great Market Crash of 2019, but I still have to sit two tables down from cool kids. It doesn't seem fair. But at least I'm not brainwashed by FauxNews and the Rethuglican Hit Machine.

I believe in AGW

I believe in global warming too, for the last 18,000 years, hence no more glaciers in Louisiana.

There never were glaciers in Louisiana. The southern most extent was somewhere roughly equivalent to the Ohio River's northern most parts, ie, northern Kentucky.

Well, actually, the entire planet was covered in ice at one time, i.e. 'snowball earth.'

Yeah, I started to write glaciers at that latitude since the Neoproterozoic, but since the reference to 18ka and Louisiana, I felt it was irrelevant.

Thanks for setting wireline straight. Out there also doing the job of setting folks straight on the AGW dispute is greenman3610 with his Climate Denial Crock of the Week.

Most have some humor, all are well done. His latest 2 however just shows interviews with military men and other gov't men who see the potential problems of AGW as far as it affects the US from a security standpoint. From James Woolsey to Gen. Zinni to General Gordon Sullivan etc. and

All you right wingers if you can't trust our military who can you trust?

You gotta believe in something.

I believe I'll have another beer.

I'm about to nitpick and add to non-topic chatter. Sorry Prof Goose.

First - AGW is based in SCIENCE, not belief. Therefore, I do NOT believe in anthropogenic global warming. I think the non-controversial facts (burning fossil fuels releases carbon, carbon is a GHG, the greenhouse effect was first theorized in the 1830s, atmospheric GHG concentrations have been rising and so has global temperature, etc...) point to a high degree of likelihood that human activity is changing the global climate.

Second - What is the great market crash of 2019? Did you mean 1929? I googled the phrase and all that came back was a bunch of nutjob sites about jesus and UFOs. I don't normally like name calling, but some people are nuts.

Is there some reliable data suggesting another market crash? I can think of multiple long term trends that may cause another crash, but i wouldn't say that 2019 will be when it happens. Please elaborate.

You don't believe in UFOs? What are you? Some kinda denialist freak? Do you have any evidence that the market won't crash in 2019? Why would you believe them and not me? Young man, I have certified models proving absolute, that the market cannot continue without Alien Intervention beyond 2019. I suggest you pray for Alien Capital and their secrets to save you from the obvious doom that is approaching.

"If I lived in Fife, Alabama, I've be down on my knees praying for alien abduction every night!"

- Bill Hicks (RIP)

Fortunately, I do not live in Fife, Alabama.

delawaresooner wrote:

First - AGW is based in SCIENCE, not belief.

That is only partly true. The basic mechanism hypothesized for AGW -- namely, the interception of outgoing long-wave infrared radiation by greenhouse gases -- is indeed based on science.

However, the belief in the accuracy of the global circulation models borders on faith -- for despite some serious problems with them, the AGW alarmists stand by them nonetheless.

There are over a dozen or so such models and they all predict the same thing: they predict that the greatest warming will occur in the tropical troposphere, which will exhibit a "hotspot" of warming that exceeds the surface warming.

But in fact, this "hotspot" has yet to be detected. Based on satellite and weather balloon measurements, the 1 degree or so Celsius warming that has been seen at the surface over the last 50 years *exceeds* the warming in the tropical troposphere -- so something is wrong. Either the models are wrong or the surface warming relative to the tropical troposphere has been exaggerated, possibly by the ongoing contamination of the surface record by urban heat bias.

There are many such unresolved questions in the great global warming debate. The science is far from settled.

The AGW hypothesis depends on a lot more than the accuracy of global circulation models. Even if you were to show that they all were grossly inaccurate the basic problem is that more energy is coming in than going out. That means things must get warmer.

Speaker to Animals wrote:

Even if you were to show that they all were grossly inaccurate the basic problem is that more energy is coming in than going out. That means things must get warmer.

Not necessarily -- it all depends on the feedbacks.

The warming expected from a doubling of CO2 alone is only on the order of 1 degree celsius. All the GCM models assume that this increase of 1 degree from CO2 will lead to more water vapor being in the air -- and it is this extra water vapor -- this "positive feedback" from water vapor -- this is where they get all their scary temperature increase predictions.

But other scientists such as Lindzen of MIT and Spencer of UAH have produced evidence that the feedbacks to warming from CO2 are NEGATIVE and tend to cancel the CO2-induced warming.

Lindzen, for instance, has produced satellite data on the outgoing long wave infrared radiation that is escaping into space -- and that data shows that the outflow of energy is NOT less than the inflow.

It is still an open question IMHO.


Lindzen has been fairly well rebutted on his feedback conclusions.

Not sure what specific papers by Spencer you are referring to.

No, that is incorrect. The fundamental issue is energy in minus energy out. The feedbacks that you are discussing are only important to the extent that they influence the balance of energy in minus energy out.

Right now the amount of GHG is increasing. Perhaps there will be compensatory effects, or perhaps there will be cascading effects. But so long as the GHGs continue to increase things will get warmer.

Oh by the way I did a little research on the troposphere effect you mentioned. As far as I can tell there is no consensus at all that the models are failing to model the tropical troposphere correctly. Any discrepancies are well within data limits of accuracy. There was a serious paper published in 2007 by Douglass et al claiming failure of the models to describe the troposphere, however reviews of this paper have pointed out faulty analysis of the data and this paper is pretty much considered to be invalid. Interestingly Douglass and his coworkers have made similar claims about AGW models in previous papers that have turned out to be demonstratively wrong.

"...the mathematical relation between the number of hurricanes produced in certain parts of Earth and the energy they release... Scientists have discovered that this relation corresponds to a power-law, a precise mathematical formula"

@ WebbHubbleTelescope: If you rank all the hurricanes in an area according to the energy they release, would you get a curve similar to the one you have posted several times on TOD?

Continuing our discussion from yesterday:

Barny, I agree with most of what you say, but I have to leave a little room for doubt about their ability to bolt on a new riser on day one. At that time, they were very worried about a much larger flow if they removed the crimp in the pipe. Here is what I would like to have seen them doing on day one.

sketch of sleeve for emergency connection of underwater riser pipes

They could have used something like this to attach a full-size riser instead of that silly little "riser insertion tool". The attachment point could be *after* the crimp in the old riser, so as to avoid any disturbance of the existing pressures.

This may not be the right forum for an engineering discussion. There have been a lot of good ideas put forward in these comments, but then they get buried in a flood of unrelated discussion, and cut off before we can finish the discussion. If anyone would like to contribute ideas, diagrams, and technical information relating to blowout prevention or response, I'm starting a discussion group at You are welcome to join. Maybe we can hash out ideas there, and summarize here, if we think a wider audience might be interested.

Nice puff piece on the John Wright in the Houston Chronicle

His margin of error: 3½ inches.

"If there is anxiety, it is created by the expectation you have to do it on the first try and the whole world knowing about it," Wright, who is aboard the Development Driller III rig in the Gulf, told the Houston Chronicle in an e-mail.

"If you make it, you're a hero. If you miss, I would expect it to be like missing the winning field goal in the Super Bowl. Either way, it will be something you will play over and over the rest of your life," Wright said.

"I got an e-mail this morning telling me that I will be personally responsible for the next move up in the stock market if the intersection and kill is successful on the first try. Las Vegas will be booking odds next."

We need Bruce Willis. :>)

For what, so he can look in the mirror?

We have John Wright. That's exactly who we need.

In case we need a nuke. :>)

More seriously, why does it require a world champion driller? Seems like everything depends on the technology, not the skill of the guy watching the needle. Just a thought. I have no experience with this technology.

I've worked on drilling rigs... all the technology in the world will not save you from a fool, and a competent operator can save you from the worst technological f-ups you can imagine.

It's all about the people, and always will be, because machines do what people tell them to do. Stupid people = bad things happen. Good people = minimize problems.

Seems like everything depends on the technology, not the skill of the guy watching the needle.

Tell that to the families of the 11 guys who died. Everything depends on "the skill of the guy watching the needle".

Well I am sure if you asked Mel Gibson who's fault it was he could tell ya. LOL

Can someone explain why the ROV couldn't find the second DP using a pickle fork?

Just a guess, of course, but it could be because it's 13,000' down on the bottom of the hole.

And we call pickle forks "spears". LOL.

Thanks for the answer (but I still like "pickle fork").

I thought that was a septer the ROV got to carry for doing the best job of the day.

Should have fabricated a runcible spoon on the spot, I suspect forces dark are preventing this simple solution.

Assuming the BOP shears had worked, and the spill had never happened, how would BP/TransOcean proceed with the resulting well, with it's huge pressures held only by the BOP, and all that sheared drill pipe in place beneath?
Would they abandon the well and the BOP?
Try to make it productive with the BOP in place?
Would they then drill a Relief well and kill it?
Is there some way to recover to remove the drill pipe and complete the well?

man -- At a minimum MMS regs would have required BP to pump into the kill lines on the BOP and stop the flow. Would have taken a lot of pressure to do so but they had the pumps to do it if the BOP wasn't too damaged to take it. After that a lot of what-ifs. If the BOP could be opened after the kill they could have gone back in with DP and redo the cmt job. DP out of a cased hole is pretty easy. If that worked they could go back to the original temp abandon plan. But if the well was too damaged to take that chance the regs would have required BP to set permanent plugs in the well before the abandoned it.

Perhaps OT: I live in Brazil, and people are sending me wild articles about the possibility of a huge methane explosion, bulging of the sea floor, various cracks in the sea floor also leaking oil, and I have seen other articles in the MSM suggesting that it is better to use two relief wells for injecting the mud (more pressure), instead of just one. Does it look like BP is planning to "relieve" the well with this new cap (by capturing the oil until it runs out)? When the first drilled relief well hits the damaged line, will they be able to measure the pressure of the flow? Sorry for jumbling all these questions together.

T -- They won't be able to measure the flow pressure per se. But the response of the RW mud will tell them something. The RW mud column will be "overbalanced" (greater than the reservoir pressure) when they make the intersect. They might lose mud if the annulus isn't in communication with the reservoir. That might actually lighten the MW in the RW to see if they get some pressure feedback. They could just start pumping the kill pill right away but they would know for sure where it's going. Some new info would be helpful but in the end all they may be able to do is pump like crazy and pray.

Thank you for your reply.

I think they'll pump like crazy and pray. And I sure hope they got enough mud.

this has all been covered in past threads of course.

Today or tomorrow will show if Dr Doom, aka Matthew Simmons was right or wrong. Odds are that Dr. Simmons has self-detonated a nuclear device in the well-bore of his own credibility, which is rather sad.

It may or may not. My guess is that if they encounter anomalies, they'll risk erring on the side of caution and go back to containment. The only definitive answer will come if they actually manage to stop the flow with this effort.

Even if they do halt the test, Simmons will still be wrong about most of what he's claimed.

Indeed, his kooky has achieved critical mess, we won't see the likes of him again. That's sad, good news is that's a new place at the trough.

Some more links here.

The WAIS link was quite helpful. Thanks!

good links Cheryl. Some OMG stuff there.

Dr. Simmons still saying the same things as recently as July 10? Wow.

Thanks, Cheryl, I like your place and will be back. Good blogroll y'all got going over there too.

I've seen the same articles.

I'm a geologist, i've worked on drill rigs, I've studied seafloor geology in one form or another for nearly 20 years.

That stuff is 99% ridiculous, irresponsible, unscientific nonsense.

Thanks for replying. Most of this stuff seems to be coming from the fringe.

Some of the articles referred to by the Chicken Little folks are real. The conclusions they extrapolate from them are nutty.

If you're curious about a specific issue, please ask. It's impossible to answer all the crazy claims at once.

A thread weeks ago postulated that the rig on the seafloor was sinking or leaning. Guess that didn't happen.

Is there any evidence of other leaks nearby coming from cracks in the seafloor?

No, people mistook ROV footage of the DWH wreck a mile away for footage of the sea floor.

Thanks for clearing that one up.

That's the party line anyway. One mile, three miles, who cares.

There is a lot of footage of ROVs examining the sea floor. This has led credence to the theory that BP knows about cracks in the sea floor and is trying to locate them.

Actually the ROVs are surveying pipeline routes, as BP has explained. If you look at the latest proposed layout around the BOP from Kent Wells (Press_QA_Slides_sealing_cap.pdf) you will see ulimately there will be 16 separate flexible pipes lying on the sea floor. They obviously have to avoid debris from the DWH, methane-emitting rocks, suicidal marlin, exploding hydrates, etc etc, i.e. there is a lot of surveying to be done.

That does not explain long periods, stationary, with black billows and hydrate blizzards on the seafloor miles distant from the well. Doesn't matter what the cover story was then (riser inspection) or is now (pipeline survey).

Without an assay of the supposed oil in those videos compared to a fingerprint of Macondo oil, this is the worst kind of twelfth of never fear mongering and is designed to freak people out over low/no probability BS.

Red - So like most stinkin' geologists you're giving yourself that 1% hedge. LOL. That way you can always say:"Well...I did say there was a chance".

So like most stinkin' geologists you're giving yourself that 1% hedge.

I know a geologist that won't commit beyond 50/50. Talk about hedging. :)

Ha! Good one.

hey...I fiugure if you're going to straddle that fence it's much safer to do it evenly. Otherwise that barbed wire smarts.

Yep! And, once a feller decides to get off, his coverhauls are all ripped up!

I can assure you that only being 1% on the fence, upside down and those who could help laughing, smarts too.


Rock - Geology is my game too. I'll pick up that 1% for you. Now there's no hedge - it's officially 100% :)

it is better to use two relief wells for injecting the mud (more pressure)

The 'pressure' comes from gravity - two wells won't increase the 'pressure' ... but you DO get a second chance.

As for exploding sea beds, primordial creatures lurking in The Oil Caverns, tectonic plates flying into orbit ... sheesh, that Tony Hayward guy of BP sure has something to answer for.

Update: BP may be planning to suck every last drop of oil out of the existing riser - but they will probably re-inject it deep into the seabed about 1km away as a storage option. (A small nuclear weapon will be needed to create a 2km wide cavern to hold the recovered oil)

OK, I am not any kind of flake. Obviously I am not an engineer, but I do ask serious questions. Yes, most likely many have been covered in other threads -- I am a newbie here.

Sorry about that :)

Please forgive my daft sense of humour!


T -- We're all flakes here on some level. Just different flavors IMHO. My favorite is Blue Bell Chocolate Mint. Don't be shy with your newbie questions.

Actually I never saw enough info that made me think we had oil/NG leaking anywhere but out of the top of the BOP. But the placement of seismic sensors around the well bore makes me wonder if BP/govt has some expection of inducing such leaks when they shut in the new cap. Just wild flakey speculation on my part.

Seems like a good precautionary measure no matter what they do next.

If two wells provide two flow conduits to a node located about 18000 ft below sea level, the hydraulic horsepower they can deliver at the node is higher, therefore two wells can indeed deliver more pressure - or they can deliver a lot more fluid at the same pressure. I already mentioned before some of these solutions should be tackled using the old plumber's nightmare approach. (For the geologists, a plumber's nightmare is a problem we have to tackle in fluid dynamics, or as the aggies say, "mud-pumpin' school").

BP May Stop Flow From Leaking Well After Test Today
By Jim Polson and Jessica Resnick-Ault - Jul 12, 2010

BP Plc may stop the flow of crude from its leaking Gulf of Mexico well...beginning with a pressure test today.

Should the well pass the 48-hour test, London-based BP may shut it, Doug Suttles, the company’s chief operating officer for exploration and production, told reporters today on a conference call. The test will start as early as this morning, once a stack of valves is bolted atop the well, he said. A relief well BP is drilling will still be needed for a permanent plug, he said....

The pressure test, to be monitored by seismic sensors on the seafloor, may determine whether the well bore can withstand the pressure of being shut, National Incident Commander Thad Allen said today in a CNN interview.

Evidently that is a real possibility. Now why didn't they just stack a new BOP on this in the beginning?

Go back and read the earlier threads and watch all the briefings from April onward. You will find your answer.

I have read them and I have followed their logic all along.

One of the things we have been led to believe here is something bad happened in the well and the integrity of it was in serious question and closing it in this way was not an option.

This article today implies there is a good chance they can shut it in this way.

I don't see that implication and I do see caution. Based on what they see in the data, they may proceed to try to stop the flow.

We have seen that they do not give out info on all they know. We can only wait.

They're not going to shut in the well, they're going to recover all the oil coming from the top of the existing well, bring it to the surface and either process it or flare it off depending on which ship or platform it is being piped to. This should mean there will be no more oil spilt into the Gulf once this process is up and running. The initial idea of putting a second BOP on top of the first one would not have allowed the recovery of all the oil from the well since there were no platforms available that could take the entire flow -- the existing setup will split the total oil flow out the wellhead between the Helix and Q4000 platforms and the Enterprise drillship once all of them are connected up and between them they can handle over 80,000 bpd.

They might try throttling the flow through the new top riser but there's no point right now in experimenting with a total shut in test as the back pressure could damage the casings further down the well and create more leaks. They might try shutting the new top riser completely when the first relief well starts its kill operation to provide extra control of the mud column but that's still a few weeks away. If there's no oil flow into the Gulf then stressing the casings further is not worth it and might make matters worse.

"This should mean there will be no more oil spilt into the Gulf once this process is up and running."

Unless there are storms.

the nearby BP/Shell rig making preparations last week to lay pipe. Didn't ask the little bird that told me, but I go the impression they could handle most if not all of it.

From this morning's briefing by Kent Wells:

Relief well activities continue on the development driller three, the DD3. We’re now at 17,840 feet. We’ve completed our eleventh ranging run to locate the original well bore, we’re approximately five feet away from that well and we’re about 30 feet vertically from the point at which we’ll set casing. We expect the casing operation to begin this coming weekend. We’re still on track for an earliest – or intercept and kill operation towards the very end of this month.

Quantum, nobody seems to have a good answer to that question, but the best I have heard is that they just couldn't take the risk of a blowout of the well casing. Now that the relief well is so close, they may be more willing to take that risk.

hmmm, that hardly seems a good assessment of the risks.

I think you are right.

I really am starting to think this was the plan all along. Supposedly this new part took so long because of design and manufacturing. So way back when they started it they should have added the Helix Producer to the plan but they did not and only bringing them on in the last month or so and so late in the game they complained about it.

It is puzzling.

They had a BOP in route to the well but aborted after top kill.

What has changed? My only guesses:

1) With additional data and/or study they've become more confident in the well

2) They've developed models that make them more confident in their ability to tell things are going wrong before it is too late

3) They couldn't get the bolts out with the tools they had

4) Increasing financial and political pressure has them more willing to risk it

I'm curious what others think.

They had a BOP in route to the well but aborted after top kill.

What has changed? My only guesses

There is nothing to speculate if you follow the spill. The day after top kill failed, Adm Thad Allen covered this topic in his briefing extensively (a lot of questions on this). Essentially they are worry that they may have a blow out in the casing downhole and shutting in oil using a BOP on top of the existing BOP may force an uncontrolled subsea blow out. Since they cannot take the risk, they aborted the 2nd BOP attmep.

Yes, I know. The question was why then are then are they willing to take the risk now?

However I just caught the part about the seismic sensors they've installed.

So maybe the answer is related to #2. They now think they can tell if it is starting to go wrong.

Yes, I know. The question was why then are then are they willing to take the risk now

They are not taking any risk right now.. The new cap has the ability to close all the vents but only they are sure that they have enough production capability on the surface vessel to handle all the oil/ng coming out of the well. If they don't have enough capability (e.g. if one of the ship on the surface has a problem and cannot take any oil/ng mix), they would just let the excessive oil/NG spill into the sea. In the production phase, they will monitor the pressure reading very carefully to not creating too much back pressure to the well and cause a subsea blowout. When they do the bottom kill operation, they may decide to create some back pressure in the well to hold the mud down. But they will let the pressure within the bop will guide them and won't risk blowing out the casing downhole ..

They said they are going to try using the cap to shut the well down in the next few days.

From the top of the thread

BP Plc may stop the flow of crude from its leaking Gulf of Mexico well...beginning with a pressure test today.
Should the well pass the 48-hour test, London-based BP may shut it, Doug Suttles, the company’s chief operating officer for exploration and production, told reporters today on a conference call. The test will start as early as this morning, once a stack of valves is bolted atop the well, he said. A relief well BP is drilling will still be needed for a permanent plug, he said....
The pressure test, to be monitored by seismic sensors on the seafloor, may determine whether the well bore can withstand the pressure of being shut, National Incident Commander Thad Allen said today in a CNN interview.

The pressure test, to be monitored by seismic sensors on the seafloor, may determine whether the well bore can withstand the pressure of being shut,

Um don't seismic sensors feel movement and viabration? If they are testing and somsthing goes "POP" wont it be too late? By the time something fails that the seismic sensors can hear it wont it be too late to stop it from failing? How could the seismic sensors tell before it gives way?

Hazman - Have you ever heard a steam boiler as it becomes overpressured? It creaks and pops for quite a while before anything happens. The geophones should be able to hear slight sounds that mean something is close to the breaking point. Cracking cement, pings from stressed steel, etc. Assuming there's a way to quickly reduce the pressure if such sounds are heard, the safety margin is greatly improved by having these sensors in place.

I think the biggest change is that they may now be able to "produce" using the choke line/manifold while stopping the main flow with the new BOP stack, ( and while monitoring pressures, sounds etc.) If the BOP can be safely closed someone will gingerly close valves on the choke manifold until either the well is shut in or something scary is detected.

Oh duh

Why didn't I think of that?

(Bangs head on table)

And it also creates another 5,000 ft of mud head for the kill process manking the head in the RW and WW equal.

There was a parallel discussion downthread related to this going on at the same time.


Historic oil spill fails to produce gains for U.S. environmentalists

[...] But this year, the worst oil spill in U.S. history -- and, before that, the worst coal-mining disaster in 40 years -- haven't put the same kind of drive into the debate over climate change and fossil-fuel energy.

The Senate is still gridlocked. Opinion polls haven't budged much. Gasoline demand is going up, not down.


The story of 2010 is not that nothing happened after the BP spill, or after the coal-mine explosion that killed 29 in West Virginia on April 5. It's that much of the reaction has focused on preventing accidents -- on tighter scrutiny of rigs and mines -- rather than broader changes in the use of oil and coal.

On Capitol Hill, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) recently proposed a plan to cut oil use by shifting to electric vehicles, building better mass-transit systems and switching to biofuels. But the Senate's most important environmental debate, the one over climate legislation, remains stalled.


"There's a feeling: 'The government really can't control all this stuff. They can't keep us safe,' " said Gold, who said he is trying to work out a compromise climate bill that is more amenable to the industry. "After Katrina and 9/11, we're in the post-'government can fix it all' world."

At 11 weeks after the spill, some historians say it's too early to say it won't alter national environmental politics. Adam Rome, a historian of the U.S. environmental movement at Pennsylvania State University, said that it could take a year for the public to understand what the spill has done to the gulf -- and for politicians to understand what the spill has done to the public.

"The Senate is still gridlocked. "

Don't they really mean that one party is still pushing it's strategy to block the majority from voting on any thing and everything just because Americans voted them out last election? They will run the country into a ditch before they will ever work on any of the huge problems we face so that in november they can claim the other side failed to get anything done. What a winning strategy for America!

Everyone I know, from being right of Attila to left of Trotsky, is in favor of cleaner, safer alternatives to petro and is fully aware of the scale of the environmental disaster in the GOM. But the supposed connection between alternative energy sources and a 2000 page climate change bill is being perceived as fuzzy at best, even if the MSM assumes the connection.

a 2000 page climate change bill

What's this fixation on the length of bills? Have you ever seen a page of legislative language, snakehead? They're like trial transcripts: thanks to formatting conventions, each one is lucky to carry -- I dunno, maybe 200 words? -- of text. So "2,000 pages!" is a totally-red herring. (And as syncro et al. can attest, the more precise a bill's language, the less litigation it's apt to generate later -- a good thing, no?)

I think most people presume that the length of bills is extended by the addition of unrelated stuff, and there's a perception that they don't get read to the point that they're sufficiently comprehended before being voted on. People are cynical about legislation and legislative practices. It's hard for me to find fault with that.

People are cynical about legislation and legislative practices. It's hard for me to find fault with that.

Well, I've never found cynicism to be worth much, but suspicion and close watching are helpful. Now if more reporters and bloggers would just get up to speed on that . . .

"People are cynical about legislation and legislative practices. It's hard for me to find fault with that."

The people don't vote on legislation. Legislators do. I have seen no proof that "people" oppose the legislation, as in a majority. I do see proof that one party supported the proposals in the legislation until the other pary took majority control, then they opposed it, or any action at all.

And I do see leaders of that party distorting any legislation with ridiculous hysteria such as death panels for the health care bill and economic collapse if we dare do anything about oil or GW.

It is discouraging. If competing proposals were introduced, and tricks were not used to block majority rule, that would be all i could ask for. But at this rate, it will take people dying in the streets before anything ever gets done. Whose interest does that serve?

The topic is obstructionmism and what that means for the future of the USA. How do we citizens get a govt. that functions instead of one consumed with politics and winning at all costs? What will it take?

Hmm, death panels. Right you are..and then there was a party claiming costs would not increase and we could expand the entitlement program for little without busting the budget and not increase taxes for the middle class (Oh yeah, and a president claiming AARP and AMA were not special interests). Seems to me both parties were blowing smoke. And you wonder why the public is cynical? It is a good thing all those who will benefit from the legislation are purists and have no economic interest. Thank God the trial lawyers do not ever get involved in all this political stuff.

and then there was a party claiming ... we could expand the entitlement program for little without busting the budget and not increase taxes for the middle class

I'm sorry for extending this OT detour, but really, Diverdan, can you point to proof that that has happened or will? Because the non-partisan CBO crunched the numbers and found that the ACA reforms will reduce the deficit. Costs increase, but savings increase more (as when you buy a new, more energy-efficient fridge).

Well, I think Diverdan is correct. Lotus, you might be a few press releases short of a combination plate (with apologies to Winnie the Pooh).

The CBO was grumpy because of the constraints (i.e. artificial assumptions) that it was placed under in the initial evaluation of the bill, and has subsequently come out to say that the enactment of the provisions will substantially increase the debt.

But we are OT, are we not.

edit: spelling

Lotus, you might be a few press releases short of a combination plate

Whoops, I am indeed, cap (been glued here since April). But I did just go back-and-fill briefly . . . so, seems that CBO has jumped its traces and decided to run numbers for what could happen if some future Congress turns back all the cost-fixes this Congress put into ACA, huh?

That's a strange thing for them to do -- making political forecasts instead of fiscal ones isn't their usual practice, especially when they have no evidence to offer for the scenario -- so I dunno what to make of it. Well, I'll look into this a bit more while things are slow around ye olde Gulf catastrophe, and maybe I'll have more to say later.

cap, I'll just drop off the lede of this Ezra Klein post from four days ago, but it's worth a whole read:

The OMB has dug into the CBO's projections for the Affordable Care Act, and they're pretty pleased with what they see. I'm going to quote the analysis, but if you just want to read one line, the ACA wipes out about a quarter to a third of our long-term deficit -- and that's in the nasty scenario, where we continue things like the Bush tax cuts and the Medicare doc fixes. ...

There, a bit better caught-up now. And hushing, rilly.

ima hushin' too...after this

"the Congressional Budget Office updated its cost projections (of Obamacare). It found that the new health legislation would cost $115 billion more than estimated when it was enacted ("ObamaCare's Ever-Rising Price Tag," Wall Street Journal, June 3).

lotus quoted leftist Klein:

The OMB has dug into the CBO's projections for the Affordable Care Act, and they're pretty pleased with what they see.

The proof that the healthcar takeover is NOT going to work and is NOT going to reduce the deficit is in the plain and simple fact that the cowards have delayed its actual introduction until 2014, well after the next presidential elections.

If government's latest scheme were actually going to do so many wonderful things, they'd have made it effective immediately, not 4 years into the future. They are simply hoping that the American people will be too stupid to remember who completed the destruction of the healthcare system. And the may be right.

lotus quoted leftist Klein:

The OMB has dug into the CBO's projections for the Affordable Care Act, and they're pretty pleased with what they see.

The proof that the healthcare takeover is NOT going to work and is NOT going to reduce the deficit is in the plain and simple fact that the cowards have delayed its actual introduction until 2014, well after the next presidential election.

If government's latest scheme were actually going to do so many wonderful things, they'd have made it effective immediately, not 4 years into the future. They are simply hoping that the American people will be too stupid to remember who completed the destruction of the healthcare system. And the may be right.

I feel safe in predicting that you didn't read the link there, Michael, but I'm not going to pursue this (or rise to amerman's bait again). You can lay out all the facts in the world, but when ideology intrudes, they won't matter one skinny iota.

How facts backfire explains a lot.

Excellent article.

We need a constitutional amendment to limit bills to less than 1000 words. If they want to, they can have another bill. This means the turkeys won't be able to attach pork and all sorts of garbage to the law.

the problem with a 2,000 page bill:

1) it is mostly unread by those who vote on it, 2) the unintended consequences grow with each page, 3) the add-ons and riders that have nothing to do with the original purpose of the bill.

Captbob, the same could be said of 99% of legislation already passed, no doubt. It sounds like excuse-making to me. Where's the alternative bill with the bad stuff stripped out?

You won't see one.

It really probably is going to take death, disaster, and economic collapse before anything happens. That is the lesson of this spill, the coal mining disaster and the financial melt down. It's more important to stay true to political teams than it is to get anything done. When you listen to the passion with which people hate eachother because of politics, it is not hard to imagine that some would choose death and destruction before daring to give an inch the the evil political opposition. It's like watching a culture in a petri dish exterminate itself.

My point isn't to demonize one party. It's to point out that the politics have become so consuming and toxic in this country that it poses a real and present threat to our future. We are unable to deal with the problems we face because people in DC are consumed with a political game that leads nowhere. And they divide the populace to advance that agenda.

Just an observation.

And therein lies the problem, and the public's cynicism. Often the opposition to a bill is less the original stated purpose and more the pork or favours to elite constituents.

Regulation and taxation is a more powerful tool than market intervention. Taxes on gasoline is around 30% higher in Canada than in the US, and we still drive from place to place, but with greater utilization of urban mass transit etc. Where I live (Manitoba) just about all the electrical grid is supplied via hydro, so we are pretty green.

I'm getting a bit off topic, which is simply that governmental overreach via the legislative branch is often as bad as the problem one seeks to address. In the case of energy, tax pollutants (reasonably and with good science- lacking in the AGW debate), regulate with teeth, and let the free market develop alternatives.

90 percent of the population of Canada lives within 100 miles of the US border making mass transportation a lot more feasible.

Here we bet on the car and truck back in the 30s developing the highway system causing people to spread out.

They will have to get people to move back into the large cities to make mass transportation to work.

When people say this I always wonder, due to the wonderful pre-war British rail system which served the countryside quite nicely.

You mean the one Beaching ripped up and forced people into their tin cans?


Mass transit to the countryside is easier to do in a country geographically smaller than the state of Minnesota but with a much, much higher population density!

I know, partisans claim anything is over-reach. But the energy bill has a lot of good that's hard to argue with and the individual components of which have broad support in the public. You'd think after the oil spill, congress would get something done. It certainly drives home the need for action and the terrible consequences of doing nothing in the face of a known threat.

Maybe obama was sincere back when he said that we need to learn to work together because until we learn to do that, we'll never be able to tackle the bigger problems, and our way of life is doomed, it's unsustainable. Maybe obama, following Lincoln, his fav. prez. and role model, really believes healing the political divide in the country is the key to solving the problems we face, and that he can move that forward.

Or maybe it was all just a gimmick. But I like the message because i think it's true. It's usually not the technology, the understanding of the problem or the desire to do something about it that is lacking. It's the politics that stops anything from getting done.

Someone needs to teach this nation how to find the common good and the common ground, and that it exists. Instead we're taught and led to fight endelss political wars that are really pretty silly when you come right down to what they are all about.

Either that or we need to get rid of the fillibuster so someone can lead this country and so things can get done. With a 60 vote requirement in the senate now institutionalized, all you have to do is look at California's vote requirement on the budget to see where the US is headed. Nothing changes, nothing gets done, the problems mount to the point of collapse.

"individual components of which have broad support in the public"

If those in control of Congress would pull these components out and vote on them, they would pass. But they are not willing to do this. They insist on packing the bill with all the pork and poison pills they can to buy votes and support their agenda. If they can cut this just right so it passes by one vote, they have managed to force a lot of pork and poison on the minority. If they fail to pass it, it's because the other party is obstructionist.

Note that both parties do this when they are in power. Almost all bill titles end with "and for other purposes" so they can put whatever they want in the bill.

If those in control of Congress would pull these components out and vote on them, they would pass.

I don't believe that for a second, and neither do you, unless you have not been paying attention for the past 18 months. It does not matter what gets put forward. If it comes for the wrong team, it gets fillibustered, period. 60 votes for anything and everything.

And you are worng that both sides do that. No opposition minority has ever in our history abused the fillibuster to the extent it has been the last year.

But you are right in the sense that now that the one side has done it, when they take majority in the senate next time, you can be certain the other side will do it, too. So now we probably have a permanent 60 vote super-majorrity requirement to get anything done no matter who is in the WH. It's time to get rid of it. It's not in the constitution and our govt. cannot function as it needs to this way.

Edit to correct error

"Maybe obama was sincere " LOL The guy who flies a taxpayer provided 747 using 30,000 gallons of JetA to give a 20 minute earth day speech promoting conservation? A speech given just as well from the Oval office?

"Maybe obama, following Lincoln, his fav. prez. and role model, really believes healing the political divide in the country" LOL... Lincoln sacrificed over 700,000 American lives to preserve the North's hegemony/oppression over a South who was only seeking freedom and independance.... Is that healing, or butchery? Bringing people together with a cannon and a repeater?

"Either that or we need to get rid of the fillibuster so someone can lead this country and so things can get done."
That sort of liberal messiah dictation didn't work so well for Germany, Italy, Stalin's USSR, Mao's China, almost 200 million dead, taken together. Fascism appeals to you?
IMHO, our problems ARE A RESULT OF too much greedy, powerful central govt.
Thomas Jefferson:
* I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive.
* Most bad government has grown out of too much government
* Were we directed from Washington when to sow and when to reap, we should soon want bread.
* I think myself that we have more machinery of government than is necessary, too many parasites living on the labor of the industrious.
* I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.
* It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself.

I believe that TOD is not the spot for political cr*p, but If I have to read it, I might as well respond rather than let one-sided mush go unanswered...

"Maybe obama was sincere " LOL The guy who flies a taxpayer provided 747 using 30,000 gallons of JetA to give a 20 minute earth day speech promoting conservation? A speech given just as well from the Oval office?

Actually, it is MUCH worse than that. When the president flies somewhere, they take 2 747s . . . a spare . . loaded up with his press buddies, political entourage, doctors, extra secret service types and the like. AND a transport plane or two . . . gotta have that bullet-proff limo. And Marine 1, and a spare chopper or two. All of that to give a speech on conservation.

I believe that TOD is not the spot for political cr*p, but If I have to read it, I might as well respond rather than let one-sided mush go unanswered...

Yeah, I hear ya. Maybe we all should start clicking that 'Flag as inappropriate link. Too bad one can't click a "Flag thread as off-topic" link.

Those are really persuasive arguments. Of course you neglected to note that I also said, "maybe it was a gimmick." But that would have ruined all the fun.

Amerman proves my point inadvertantly, in any event.

As long as people embrace the religion of politics and populate their minds with the idols of ideology and imagined boogeymen from the evil "other," nothing will ever get done or change until one side takes decisive control, in maybe 20-30 years from now. How long did the Dark Ages last?

That's okay. At some point you will see the light, if you're made suffer enough.

I actually read the bill, and had printed it out........the first portion where they talk about REEP and all the new programs for homes etc is not that hard to understand, but the last portion is like reading Latin although not nearly as bad as the healthcare bill was. I needed a valium after trying to figure out that one and the "pls refer to appendix A, subpart 3, revision 12 ect., I gave up and tossed that one.

Can't blame you, mommy. Legal can get as impenetrable as the Engineering here.

(lotus runs and hides)

lotus: I'll run and hide too. Just so you dont feel lonesome!

Grab a deck of card, GWS -- we can play gin. Maybe some sammitches . . .

You have to love the way they use indirect references to do so many things, so those not in the know have to assemble the picture like a jigsaw puzzle. (It also makes it easier to hide stuff from those who might want to know where their money is going.)

Have you ever seen a page of legislative language, snakehead

Indeed, consider the Magna Charta and the Bill of Right for efficiency and timeless.

If you can fit a description of a National Insurance Plan for the Sickly and Grossly Unprepared in 2000 words you will have a winner.

I won't wait.


The bill could be a hell of a lot stronger but it does take some very good steps.

2000 pages seems rather short considering the number of issues.

This claim that legislators or their staffs can't have read read bills because of their length is deceptive.

Bills are double spaced and full of white space. This one contains no more words than a good airport thriller.

You could skim it in an afternoon and get the important stuff.

Don't they really mean that one party is still pushing it's strategy to block the majority from voting on any thing and everything just because Americans voted them out last election?

What it really mean is that we are a country divided. And even thought we have majority of one party. But the margin of the majority is not large enough to enact the change. There is a reason that Senate set up to have 2 senators from each state regardless of size and Senate also set up the 60 votes debate limit. it is there to protect the minority opinion. Without the set up, it is easy for large state like California dominate the voting. Big state can decide that it is right for them to take everything away from smaller state like RI. As an example, let's say today 51% of folk decide that the other 49% of folks should pay 100% of what they earn in tax so that the 51% folks don't have to pay anything. Think it is ridiculus? That is exactly what is going on every time we change tax code. We are redistributing the wealth of the country. So is setting up environmental laws etc. etc. A group of folk will be benefited by the change and other will be hurted by the change.. The hurdle is high to ensure that the new law will be fair to the minority. So get over the 60 votes rule.. If the idea is so good for the country and so popular, the proponent should be able to organize the voters to kick all those senator that doesn't support the change off Senate in the next election..

Oh we are redistributing the wealth...up.

In the United States, wealth is highly concentrated in a relatively few hands. As of 2007, the top 1% of households (the upper class) owned 34.6% of all privately held wealth, and the next 19% (the managerial, professional, and small business stratum) had 50.5%, which means that just 20% of the people owned a remarkable 85%, leaving only 15% of the wealth for the bottom 80% (wage and salary workers). In terms of financial wealth (total net worth minus the value of one's home), the top 1% of households had an even greater share: 42.7%. Table 1 and Figure 1 present further details drawn from the careful work of economist Edward N. Wolff at New York University (2010).

Duh. They make most of the money and pay most of the taxes. Look at the trends. Also look at the changes over time of what happens to people in the lower quintile.


Actually, that's not really true. You ignore the fact that "They" (those who make lots of bux) take advantage of TAX DEDUCTIONS that are not available to the mere mortals in "the bottom 80%" in the so-called lower tax brackets.

Note that people who have mortgages get to deduct all the interest and other expenses on their home ownership (the bigger the home, the larger the income tax deductions); while renters get a small renters' credit that is relatively useless.

But that's just one single example.

Many years ago, I worked for a corporate law firm with a large tax practice. I read a memo from one of the "Big 8" CPA firms, where they compared the then-proposed "flat tax" to the then-current tax structure where tax deductions are utilized (to reduce the tax burden) on three different sized companies (real "Fortune 500," middle income, and "mom & pop" corporate businesses). In each case, if the flat tax (with no, or extremely limited deductions - I don't actually recall) were actually to be implemented, ALL of the examined corporations would pay MORE in income taxes, than the then-current (and current IMHO) income tax structure.

The memo recommended to its high net-worth and corporate clients that the flat tax proposal must, therefore, be defeated.

I believe that this is why the flat tax was defeated, despite the support of its advocate, Billionaire Steve Forbes.

This suggests (at least to me) that those in the lower tax brackets pay more than their wealthy and corporate counterparts. Warren Buffet thinks that this is not fair...

Mr Buffett said that he was taxed at 17.7 per cent on the $46 million he made last year, without trying to avoid paying higher taxes, while his secretary, who earned $60,000, was taxed at 30 per cent.

He thinks the super-rich ought to pay more taxes. And he was not even discussing the tax deductions of which only the super-rich can take advantage.

The real answer is the FairTax, but that's probably off-topic for this site.

Liberals don't want to deal with the fact that the great majority of the wealthy EARN it from modest circumstances.

Libs believe that poverty CAUSES irresponsible behavior, drug use, crime, dropout, broken families, sloth, unemployment.

Conservatives believe the reverse, and that we all have individual opportunity, and should have individual responsibility.

Libs worship big government, and believes it DESERVES whatever it wants to take; libs think people WORK FOR THE GOVT.

In 2006/2008, libs convinced enough independants that they could do better; the past 4 years of Dem Congress corruption, massive $Trillion+ deficits, wasteful spending, failed economy/unemployment/recession and this Dem owned Worst Environmental disaster in US history show the fiction of Dem competence.

If I wanted to read political threads, I wouldn't be here.

Oh, lordy. Buy yourself a bottle of your favorite or whatever from me if you don't drink, and then send the bill.

As of 2007, the top 1% of households (the upper class) owned 34.6% of all privately held wealth, and the next 19% (the managerial, professional, and small business stratum) had 50.5%, which means that just 20% of the people owned a remarkable 85%, leaving only 15% of the wealth for the bottom 80% (wage and salary workers).

What is the point of this data? All it said is that the top 20% of US workers/enterpreneu are more competitive in the world and the bottom 80% of US workers are not. I have 2 kids that just graduated from college and I know first hand what the education of a community college vs a top university in US offer. You also heard what offshore worker make and the risk that they took for their daily living in a rig. I would say if we don't like that distribution, it is up to the bottom 80% to improve their earning power.. We are competing in the world stage and a lot of country has better education system and more hungry workforce than we do. And in the next 50 years, they will each our lunch if we don't shape up (very much like we ate European workers lunch in the last 40-50 years) A progressive tax system is one that take money from the well to do and use the money to help the poor. It is happening with health care reform (what reform.. All it does is take money from those who has money and senior to help the uninsured..) and it is going to happen with the oil drilling regulation.

I didn't say anything about taxes, now did I?

My point was about wealth distribution, which has moved into few and fewer hands in recent decades.

Whoever has the gold makes the rules, no?

The fewer who makes the rules, the less chance the 80% has to get out of that slot.

The more skewed the wealth distribution is, the less freedom - economically or otherwise- people have.

Why do so many continue to buy into the dream that if they do the right things they will be part of that 20%, or 10% or 1%?

Your attitude is the same old "I've got mine, Jack." They used to call it "Let them eat cake." I'm sure with your education you recall what happened to the "Let them eat cake" crowd. As far as "we eat[ing] European worker's lunch" they now have higher wages, more vacation, better job security, free education for their kids, the best health care in the world, the best retirement, etc.,in spite of the fact that Europe was a pile of concrete rubble at the end of WWII. Thanks to people who think like you the U.S. is quickly becoming a third world state. States like Louisiana and Mississippi are already economic basket cases. The Europeans even send their smartest and best educated like Tony Heywood to supervise people like you.

No, I am not going to Europe, I was born in the U.S.A. I am, however, looking forward to the day when people like you are no longer an embarrassment to this country.

Better look more carefully at the situation the Europeans have gotten into. Their demographic issues are even worse then ours.

I'm not sure what you mean by "demographic issues." Economically they are handling the latest crisis a lot better than we are.

Economically they are handling the latest crisis a lot better than we are.

Really. Are you aware that Europe is going through their version of bank stress test? Europe are also going through recession and has 10% unemplyment rate vs our 9.9%.. And they are better at health care???

May 2010
Euro area unemployment rate at 10.0%
EU27 at 9.6%
The euro area1 (EA16) seasonally-adjusted2 unemployment rate3 was 10.0% in May 2010, unchanged compared with April4. It was 9.4% in May 2009. The EU271 unemployment rate was 9.6% in May 2010, unchanged compared with April4. It was 8.9% in May 2009.
Eurostat estimates that 23.127 million men and women in the EU27, of whom 15.789 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in May 2010. Compared with April 2010, the number of persons unemployed decreased by 37 000 in the EU27. In the euro area, the number of persons unemployed increased by 35 000. Compared with May 2009, unemployment rose by 1.801 million in the EU27, and by 0.991 million in the euro area.
These figures are published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

1. What happens to the unemployed over there, I mean the lazy people who refuse to work.

2. Health care better??? Uh, yeah. Unless you consider the emergency room at the local public hospital the best health care in the world.


I really, really didn't want to join this debate, because I have plenty of opinions but not the time to pursue the endless back and forths. Real debate would require concise points and rebuttals but the web don't work that way. Taking olddog's statement alone:

As far as "we eat[ing] European worker's lunch" they now have higher wages, more vacation, better job security, free education for their kids, the best health care in the world, the best retirement, etc.,in spite of the fact that Europe was a pile of concrete rubble at the end of WWII

This requires a tad of analysis. Europe benefited from the Marshall Plan, and then our allies like De Gaulle took the cash and then demanded gold for it, hammering our economy and ultimately forcing us off the gold standard, which led to a LOT of disasters downstream, but I digress. Furthermore it has had a peace dividend for the past 60 years of NOT paying for its own national defense, there was big brother superpower USA with standing armies in Germany protecting them, while they ignored their own protection. They were able to put all that money in the bank and buy our businesses and have lots of other fun with 2 month vacations and 30 hr work weeks, while we protected their backsides from the evil Soviets etc. But even with all this, their economies are heading for a shambles, look at Greece for starters but that model is UNSUSTAINABLE. Just like the energy consumption, BAU won't work, here OR there. You're asking us to copy a model that is already failing, and our vast military expense was the only reason their model had a chance in the first place. Who will WE count on for national defense, the Chinese?

So, France is to blame for all of our problems. Who knew? Actually, a lot of countries, including Switzerland, West Germany, and France started buying gold with dollars in the early '70s. They didn't trust Nixon (wow! somebody didn't trust Nixon?) to control inflation and the Vietnam War and they didn't want to get stuck with worthless dollars. Nixon then went off the gold standard forcing the rest of the world off too. Western Europe and U.S. defense contractors were more than happy to take billions of dollars from paranoid and stupid people like you. As to whose economy is in a shambles, maybe you should look around your own neighborhood. Who exactly are the Chinese going to defend us from? Bin Laden, the Martians? We must not allow a MARTIAN MILITARY GAP to exist!!!! Sound crazy? Listen to Sarah Palin and tell me it's crazy.

Oddog, I am neither paranoid nor stupid, ad hominem attacks are frowned on here, suggest you refrain in future. I'll happily compare IQ points with you any day, if I don't beat you by 50 points I'll pay you $1000. Nuff said on that.

If you were as old as you claim, you'd remember THIS, not Nixon bonehead (see how ad hominem starts?) but previous bonehead (pop quiz genius, who was president in 1965?)

Furthermore, gold was artificially pegged by the US Gov't at $35/oz, NOT its tru value BTW, something De Gaulle knew quite well. Furthermore the French had not paid back their Marshall Plan loans, in essence they borrowed American dollars, then said the dollars were no good and redeemed gold instead. To put ALL this in perspective, convert to today's value, tons of gold in French vaults at $1250/oz. Once the French traded 35 "worthless" dollars into an oz of gold they were by no means obligated to SELL them at such a worthless rate, keeping them in vaults made their currency that much stronger. But nice of you to blame all this on Nixon, when it was Johnson's fault (whoops gave you the answer). LOL

I blame the Flems and their moppery. We should all buy gold, every last damn drop we can find. It also cures warts.

As far as "we eat[ing] European worker's lunch" they now have higher wages, more vacation, better job security, free education for their kids, the best health care in the world, the best retirement, etc.,in spite of the fact that Europe was a pile of concrete rubble at the end of WWII.

I'm a European, and though neither I nor my parents are old enough to remember WWII, my grandparents were and they used to talk about it a lot. From Wikipedia:-

The Blitz was the sustained bombing of Britain by Nazi Germany between 7 September 1940 and 10 May 1941, during the Second World War. The Blitz hit many towns and cities across the country, but it began with the bombing of London for 76 consecutive nights. By the end of May 1941, over 43,000 civilians, half of them in London, had been killed by bombing and more than a million houses destroyed or damaged in London alone.

In terms of deaths, that's something like fourteen 9/11s over a nine month period with large areas of the nation's cities flattened. The country came out of it totally broken and virtually bankrupt. I would venture to say that we now have one of the best healthcare systems in the world not in spite of but because of the fact that Britain was a pile of concrete rubble.

My granparents' generation looked around and saw a broken and bleeding nation, and decided that from now on they would look after each other and care for each other. Every time I am ill, I have doctors and nurses and pharmacists who genuinely care about my well-being (I nearly died in an auto crash and spent a month in hospital). Hospital care costs nothing, for anyone, not even the tramp on the street. The link with what my grandparents suffered all those decades ago may now be tenuous, but it is nonetheless very real. Every Brit (and many Europeans) can say the same.

I recently watched Michael Moore's Sicko and was genuinely shocked that so many people in the U.S. don't have basic healthcare because they don't have the insurance. People literally die because some bureaucrat denies their claim. I was so shocked that it completely changed my view of the United States (not of the people, you understand, but of their tolerance of a "healthcare" system that treats thousands of sick people worse than we would treat our sick dogs).

" (not of the people, you understand, but of their tolerance of a "healthcare" system that treats thousands of sick people worse than we would treat our sick dogs)."

People suffering and dying from no health care is no big deal, people don't much care, really, unless it's someone they know. Obama suggesting a fix (a plan of republican origins no less), now that IS a big deal. It's socialism, damnit! We're all going to lose our freedom! We need these people to die from no health care so we can keep our freedom! Or something like that.

I completely disagree with the idea that the bottom 80% are not competetive. If they weren't competetive they would be out of a job, since most of them have a job, they are by definition competitive in their field. The question is why some people are paid a huge amount for the work they do and other are paid a pittence for the work they do. Only people who need to be trusted or have protection from competition by either a high barrier to entry (education) or by monopoly gatekeepers (unions or licencing) get a decent return on their labor. Others are in a very poor bargaining position and are therefore paid little.

Others are in a very poor bargaining position and are therefore paid little.

They are in poor bargaining position becuase workers in other country are capably and willing to do the same task for 20-30% of the wages that US worker make. And US worker does not offer any additional benefit. That is why we loss the manufacturing jobs in the last couple decade, programming job in the last 5-7 years.. If we want to do well against the rest of the world, we have to have something to offer in exchange of the wealth... What does the bottom 80% our work force has that the rest of the world don't have?

Just look at the oil rig that is leaving GOM now for international contract. Are they going to bring their US crew with them or are they going to hire someone else local for lower wages? I think the answer will tell us how competitive our rig worker is in the intenational market...

About 20% of us have American birth certificates!

What do the bottom 80% have?

The bottom 80% has the ability to democratically elect people who will redistribute wealth to them. That is a pretty significant advantage, but they very rarely use it.

My point was though, that anyone who presently has a job is competitive and to assume they aren't because they are in a low paid position is not justified by the facts. Highly paid jobs can disappear just as easily as low paid jobs. Competition drives wages down but as long as the job remains you can't say the person who fills it isn't competitive unless you claim omniscience.

Actually, since the 1980s, executive pay has been ballooning every year int obscene proportions, little related to actual profits produced by said executives. Back in the 1970s and 1980s, in general, a working class person could still afford a modest mortgage and to send one or two kids to college. Outsourcing to developing countries brought in much cheaper goods, many that no one even needs. Far too much is spent on needless things. Executives should make less. Workers should be paid more. Consumers should consume fewer needless things.

The most ridiculous part of this "they don't/couldn't read the bill" propaganda is that if it was true we'd be able to slip in all kinds of good stuff all the time.

They watch every word like hawks.

I'm sure that somebody on each legislator's staff reads the bill. But the general perception is legislators don't, and that's got to be true to some extent. However I think veering off onto the length-of-bill topic doesn't address the apparent disconnect between the CC bill and concrete, viable alternatives to petro that's perceived by a lot of the US public.

Well they did slip a big stink bomb in ObamaCare. Requirement for businesses to issue 1099s to every vendor the do $600+ total annual transactions, creating a massive burden that will fall heaviest on small businesses. Likely many small distributors will be shut out of the marketplace because purchasers will reduce vendor lists to minimize the hundreds of filings. Did anyone see this one come up during all of the press coverage before the vote?

Wrong. They do not and in many bills stuff gets though that people did not know about nor understand.

Read the bill? This from a CHAIRMAN of a house committee. These guys don't need to read no stinkin' bill they have stinkin' badges!

syncro wrote:

Don't they really mean that one party is still pushing it's strategy to block the majority from voting on any thing and everything just because Americans voted them out last election?

That "one party" doesn't have the ability to stop the majority party from doing anything they want. That's why the majority party was able to pass the healthcare nationalization and takeover bill.

What's stopping the majority party is the knowledge that the American people --already highly pissed about the healthcare takeover -- are even more adamantly opposed to a plan which the President has said will cause "electricity costs to soar" and will "bankrupt anyone who builds a new coal-fired power plant".

So what these cowards plan to do is wait until AFTER the November elections and then let the lame duck Congress pass the rest of the most despised and unpopular parts of the Administration's agenda. That way, all those Democratic congressman who lose their seats in the November elections can take it out on the American people by voting for another massive looting of the taxpayers.

They will run the country into a ditch before...

i wasn't... really wasn't... wasn't gonna say a thing tonite... but you had to... just had to...

They will...



They will...


can i bring to your attention the GLOBAL FINANCIAL MELTDOWN of 2008? the S&L Crisis of 1987... the DotCOM bubble of 2000... the Corporate Corruption scandals of 2000...

sounds like too much jim morrison to me... been down so goddamn long... it looks like up to me...

Would it kill ya to tell us a little more, Dougie? WSJ:

... BP continues to wrestle with the start-up of a new containment vessel, the Helix Producer.

The Helix Producer ship has been near the well for about two weeks. At first it was delayed from starting up because of bad weather. Over the weekend the sea calmed but technical problems have now set back its start-up date.

On Sunday, the company said the ship would be collecting oil by the end of the day. However, on Monday morning, Mr. Suttles said the vessel still isn't operational but could be in the next 24 hours. ...

UPDATE: A tidge more from WaPo:

... The effort to attach a ship named the Helix Producer to the well's blowout preventer, and then siphon 20,000 to 25,000 barrels a day to the surface, has been delayed by leaks in two different lines used in the operation. ...

Here's the full text of this AM's press briefing:

On the helix producer, we continued commissioning operations. We did encounter two problems which created some delay yesterday. One was with issues on a hydraulic control line for a valve and the second was a leak in the methanol system. Both of those issues have been resolved and we will be starting up the helix producer later today. It will likely take several days to ramp up to a full capacity, which is at about 25,000 barrels a day, which with the Q4000 would give us a total capacity of around 33,000 barrels a day of containment.


We did have a problem with the deployment real on the Inspiration. We had a backup plan and moved to that backup plan and will be attaching the cap later this morning.

Thanks, David. I guess that's meant to be "deployment reel."

Some cute transcriptions today ...

BP is "continuing cork on installing the ceiling cap".

As the cap is moved over the transition spool, I'll be looking for a cat peering down from above before the flow is closed off with a cork.

(yesterday's transcriber just gave up on "Toisa Pisces" and wrote "(inaudible)" instead.)

Yes, at another spot the transcriber wrote "ceiling camp," when Suttles said "Ceiling Cat" plain as day. I guess the transcriber is just theologically ignorant. It's an example of the ED Hirsch "cultural literacy" issue: comprehending language depends on a stock of non-linguistic knowledge.

Two others from this morning's transcript: They had trouble with “the deployment real on the Inspiration.” And, “We’re currently submitting the casing in place” (for the relief well).

Did they hook up the stack to the spool?

Not yet. The stack is still hovering at about 4900 feet deep. I don't know what the hold up is.

Thad Allen has said that the cap is stacked while they do a seismic baseline run before they put the cap on and start cranking down the pressure.

FWIW, Thad Allen's briefing today was just canceled. No explanation in the email from the spill response team.

The number of pages in the bill is why they are blocking it.

I see. That makes perfect sense. Better to do nothing in the face of the startling threat that a 2000 page bill poses to our nation.

Cap and trade was supported by republicans, including their presidential nominee, until dems had to go win that election. Now thay all oppose it. Like all of obama's big item proposals on big ticket legistation, his plan originated with republicans. It sure appears he wants to get things done and is willing to use and include republican proposals, but when he does, the GOP suddenly disowns them and blocks anything. And the press just calls it "gridlock" instead of the obstructionism it is.

Edit: fixed poor composition.

I think some repubs supported it, like Graham and McCain, other than that I don't think it was widely supported.

If China, India and Brazil completely ignore global warming, does it really matter what we do?

There's an article on this page saying china's coal consumption is going up 10% a year or so. I'd be in favor of phasing out coal and using nuclear and natural gas as well as other things (wind, solar) if they are possible. But I don't know that it will effect global emissions that much.

Since we are the biggest energy gluttons on the planet, yes, I think it matters what we do.

Since when do adults use the excuse "well he is doing it too"?

Maybe if we quit going into debt to buy crap from China, their energy consumption would fall too?

Too many energy guzzling brooms!

Seriously. My son was visiting friend who is very poor. The kid had bought a $1 made-in-china broom with a metal handle. The handle broke in my son's hand, cutting him.

How much energy did it take to produce & ship this worthless piece of crap?

How much pollution is involved from the production to disposal?

Then do not buy the cheap broom. Go out and make one, or better yet, do not sweep. We need more people to not care about price and economics---oh wait they bought all those houses from 2000-2006.

Just put on a $3 per gasoline tax and make all interstates tolls roads. Nobody will complain( I wouldn't). After all, like the broom, all hate that cheap gasoline. I bet you would get the majority to cast all 60 of their votes in congress for it!

I agree about not buying the cheap broom, but that doesn't occur to young people with little money. I like the don't sweep option, but can't fault the kid for wanting to clean.

For a kid with $10 the $1 broom & $9 food looks like a deal, the first time anyway.

A lot of people around here do not have much money. They buy good brooms. They understand. Maybe it is US culture is the issue or what people learn.


The US consumer drives several different economies. If we [in the US] purchased fewer things, there would be a lot of negative effects over the world but there would probably be lower CO2 production as well.

"If we [in the US] purchased fewer things ..."

That's in next year's plan (tax increases).

Ha! Another good one.

Actually, it's showing up already. Key indicators are dropping like a rock again.

"If China, India and Brazil completely ignore global warming, does it really matter what we do?"

I guess the only reason to do it is to set an example. It is hard to say to them you shouldn't be doing but its ok for us to do it because we started first. I don't know the answer to this but if the developed world where to reduce its per capita GHG by say 40% and India and China were to raise theirs to that level would that be sufficient to avoid climate change? Or even at those levels we ( as a planet) are still screwed? I think GHG is like some Greek tragedy - everybody knows the end but nobody can stop themselves. Politically India and China can't accept a regime where they commit their population to a lower standard of living than the US and the US will not reduce theirs. Unfortunately the US has exported the meme that standard of living is all about material well being.

IMO the only thing we(the US) should be focusing on is how to survive the inevitable global warming. I think a good place might be with a southern border wall to keep out the inevitable flood of climate refugees but would also include development of agricultural products that withstand hotter dryer conditions- GMO is a given.

China is going to be hurt by climate change more than many.

Among other things, the Himalayan glaciers melting are going to F$%# their waster supply.

They are moving aggressively into renewables. Seem intent on owning the technology.

This is a place where their planned economy might seriously outperform ours.

Not sure where they plan on placing all of these renewables. It seems China is a bit short on arable land or open land near population centers. It is more likely the Chinese wish to manufacture the technology to sell to other idiots who will buy it with subsidized dollars (or euros, whatever). Then use the cash to buy coal and oil. China's central planning seems less focused on symbolism and pious regard for Gaia than pragmatical collection of wealth.

China has huge amounts of desolate land, such as in the north and west. Population is concentrated in the low lands. Interest in pragmatic collection of wealth is exactly why they are likely to take GW seriously. If their food supply is devastated they won't be doing well economically.

China will be especially hurt by "climate change" if we don't buy their windmills.

The way I see it China's economy is going to outperform us, because more and more it's less and less a planned economy. Our economy is becoming more planned (which is impossible to do correctly ask farmers under Mao) and others are leaning toward economic freedom. I think that the cat's out of the bag in China and they will be the next Economic growth engine for the world due to liberty not because of control.

China has an interesting ability to mix free market and planned approaches in an intelligent way. Engineers, scientists, economists and the like identify a problem or opportunity and they just act. They aren't paralyzed by ignorant partizan ideologues and their media circus.

The move to take the lead in renewable is driven by government incentives.

They were slammed by the financial meltdown but went full-metal Kenesian, instituted a huge stimulus immediately (built 7000 miles of high-speed rail!) and are already back to 12% growth.

Two observations:

The polarization of US politics/ideology is really frightening. Both sides on any issue go at it hammer and tongs, with little apparent regard for understanding the other side or finding some common ground. Intolerance and intransigence are not a great governance model for the complex world we live in.

Second observation: don't assume the USA will be an isolated island in a world of global warming. As a Canadian, my personal worst-case nightmare is that desertification of the mid-west US will create vast movements of people such as we have seen in Africa, with a spill across the border into Canada (on the assumption that the mid-west US becomes arid, while southern Canada gets more rainfall...who knows if this exact scenario will play out. The point is that global warming is a very high stakes crap shoot.)

It is widely supported in the public, and it did have some gop support. You seem to interpert lack of more GOP support and lack of general support as being the same thing. GOP leadership threatens to revoke leadshp poisitons and anything else they can to force members to vote in lock-step. So I bet gop support is stronger than it appears. Even without it, a clear majority in congress and in the country support it. Normally in a democracy, that's all you need. This new requirement for a supermajority on everything has to go.

But to get to your other points, the USA leads the world is why we should not care what china does. We can ceede that role if you like. And we will if we don't get moving and get past the gridlock nation.

China may be increasing its coal consumption, but it is taking a longer view and looking past coal, and may emerge as the world leader on alternative energy technology. It's the trutle and hare scenario perhaps, but don't rule it out. Heck, Italy installed more solar panels than USA this past year and will have more solar panels than all of the USA by next year. We sit and do noting at our own peril.

The number of pages in the bill is why they are blocking it.

I see. That makes perfect sense.

I said nothing of the kind. I didn't address the Blue v Red issue at all.


What do people think about "Oil- money,politics and power in the 21st Century by Tom Bowers"

This was published before the oil spill- but reading the descriptions of BP and its culture it is not surprising that this happened.

Sorry Brit, I crashed early last night and never saw the last post from you:

What's your view on some of the things I've read about BP derivatives being similar to Lehman Brothers derivatives? The articles feel BP's portfolio of derivatives could impact many other companies. I have a tough time accepting the comparison because I thought Lehman had Fixed Income derivatives that were nose-diving due to mark-to-market accounting rules and a bankruptcy would further erode these assets. I'd guess the purpose of BP derivatives is to protect against price fluctuations in oil or international currency.
Here's one of the articles:

I don't think I was very clear in my question. I wasn't looking for explanation of the term "derivative". I was looking for explanation of the use of derivative for a commodity such as corn, soy, or oil. This may be different from its use with a fixed income entity such as real estate. The whatever of mass destruction article focused on real estate based derivatives. And the recent financial turmoil did not affect commodity based derivatives IMHO. I have another comment further down that gives more explanation.
And thanks for the comments.

Brit~I would think someone who trades commodities could answer your question better, I never had the Series 3 for Commodities, only my 7 and 63, so I will defer this to someone here better qualified to answer this for you, either a trader or a farmer etc who trades commodities as a hedge. Our's were linked to credit swaps (again I never did any though)

Last night this ROV went around the wellhead with this instrument and holding it in about 4 different places there for about 5 minutes each. Then it went to the top where the oil is coming out and stuck the same instrument in the oil flow for about 5 minutes.

Any ideas what it is?

Maybe an external clamp-on transducer for a ultrasonic flow meter.

When they "flare" waste products, is this environmentally sound or do they simply pump more CO2 and stuff into the atmosphere for me to breathe? What are the economics involving in flaring rather than separating the products into useful fuel?

Thanks, Chris

My understanding (which could easily be wrong) is that they have no way to transport the NG, so it has to be flared, and whatever oil that's being flared is stuff they don't have the capacity to store or otherwise handle.

I saw trucks with high pressure tanks (instead of a one big tank a bunch of long thin tanks) used to haul NG from wells when pipelines were not available, including some blow outs, in Oklahoma in the early 80's. I don't know how effective it was. Also at the some were getting $10 mcf for gas so that was a factor in the economics.

This should not be confused with LNG which requires expensive proccesing, but simply filling tanks from the well.

So it is possible but the economics are a factor especially when you have to outfit ships for a one time deal.

I guess they could hook up a barge with a set of compressors on it, to the vessel taking the oil from the well. These compressors could take the gas to a higher pressure (say 1000 psi), and it can be stored in barges full of 30 inch pipeline, snaking back and forth on the barge. The barge could be taken to an unloading pier, connected a second set of compressors to make sure the gas can be put into a high pressure gas pipeline. I've worked the schedule as follows:

1. Engineer compressor vessel - 2 months
2. Purchase compressors on an emergency basis - 2 months
3. Regulatory approval in parallel with compressor purchase - 3 months
3. Install compressors on vessel - two weeks
4. Build transport barges with 30 inch pipelines - six months
5. Build piers and onshore compressor station - including engineering, permits, etc - one year.

So, I think this schedule is break neck, but since this is a national emergency, it's doable. All you have to do is give me a blank check and a gun to shoot anybody who gets in the way. But I don't see how it can be done in less than one year.

It is the better of two evils I believe.

Without Co2 you would stop breathing.

Without Co2 you would stop breathing

I don't know about you, you may be the Jolly Green Giant, but I breath O, plants breath Co2.

What triggers you to take a breath is Co2 in your bloodstream measured in a small part of the brain..

Which is the carbon dioxide you produce in your body, not the stuff in the atmosphere.

arent you talking about involuntary breathing, you could still breath voluntarily, you just couldn't sleep, or you might sleep a loooooooooooooooooong time.

Ooooh, ooooh...I can answer this one! (Frustrated non-engineer who has been learning a lot from this site over the past weeks, waves his hand from the back of the class).

There certainly are chemoreceptors that measure changes in blood pH as CO2 levels accumulate (CO2 + H2O ---> H2CO3), and these absolutely do contribute to breathing. However, the body (unlike BP in the current incident) has a competent fail-safe system based on mechanical receptors located in the chest (they used to be called J-receptors when I were a small lad...but that were last century and things may have changed).

Those receptors need to be stimulated by movement of the rib cage...if they aren't you get a strong desire to breathe. For those of you who are SCUBA fans/professional divers you will be aware that you can reduce the urge to breathe after you have been holding your breath by slowly exhaling. This movement of the rib cage keeps the receptors happy for a little longer and thereby staves off the desire to breath a little (I wonder how many people are experimenting at home now....if anyone passes out as a result, please send all correspondence to Tony Hayward!).

In terms of effect on cessation of breathing, I think you will find absence of O2 is a little more critical than absence of CO2!


Control of Respiration by the Nervous System

1) A respiratory center within the reticular formation (network) of the medullary pons of the brainstem (with 3 centers as outlined below)

2) Chemoreceptors which send afferent or sensory input to the respiratory centers in the brainstem. There are peripheral and central brainstem chemoreceptors.

3) Neural reflexes which can modify the basic setup.

1) Bilaterally, on either side of the reticular formation are the medullary respiratory centers; an inspiration center and an expiration center send nerve impulses to the diaphragm and intercostal muscles. These respiratory centers (inspiration and expiration centers) are sometimes called the "medullary rhythmicity" centers, as they are believed to set the baseline rhythm for respiration. In the normal resting state, respiration is due to the inspiratory center and when these nerves shut off, there is passive exhalation. The expiration center is only required when activity and requirements are increased. In this diagram, you can see that the inspiratory center receives information from stretch receptors in the lungs via cranial nerve X, from peripheral chemoreceptors in the region where cranial nerves IX & X leave the brainstem and from pH and pCO2 receptors in the bone-dura-arachnoid-CSF space (more on these chemoreceptors, below).

Not to mention that if you hyperventilate too much before a breath hold dive you can use up all you O2 before your CO2 kicks in. That can be a real problem, kind of spoils your day.


Too much CO2 and you stop breathing.

There is no place to go with the natural gas, so it is waste.

The economics is the price of ng is not high enough to send it to shore.

For those of you who are interested, I have a slideshow showing the effects of the oil on Waveland, Mississippi on my website:

Appalling images, Andy, but thanks for them.

Ditto. Eccellent photog. Horrible images.

Where are you at in Waveland? Looks like around Buccaneer park.

Andy, I think the fish is a Sheepshead. I caught several not too far from where you took these photos. I mentally splice your images with those in my mind from 5 years ago - 180 degrees from your view in the photos. A panorama of hell.

Hey, FE, getting back to you from a few days ago, the reason i asked you about WYO is because i worked for a small outfit called Frontier in Alpine, Afton and around that area. I've seen stranger coincidences!

Not the same. Of course there are lots of company references to a Frontier in Wyoming. Beautiful country in the area there. I did some work in the overthrust near Evanston south of that area. I think that as events play out in this century that we are in a "frontier" of sorts now regarding energy.

Yes, Evanston was quite busy there aty one point. Lots of activity. But what a hell-hole. I was lucky to be working in those beautful mountains along the greys river, and the snake, too, for a summer and winter on a seismic crew, before heading up to Alaska.

It's still one of my favorite places to fish. There's a dirt road that goes all the way up the greys river to the source. About 30 miles up that road, you're in paradise with views and Brown trout like you would not believe.

Frontier, not really happy to be taking those pictures, I thought the fish was a flounder, but I am not a fisherman, except for pictures. :)


I was near that spot the summer following Katrina. I was helping some relatives that were in the Bay St. Louis area. I am a bit of a fly fisherman and went down to Waveland and caught some Sheephead, speckled trout, redfish and even snagged a ray.

I tried to process in my mind the force of the waves that came in during Katrina and wiped those houses for blocks to the foundation behind me. As you probably know most everything to the railroad tracks was gone. It was summer but the trees still didn't have leaves and there was still debris in their branches. I had heard that bodies had been recovered in some of those trees.

Mental Health was already and issue there. I could see how for some this could be the snapping point.

Sorry Andy, but all I could see was a black space :(


Hard to look at. Thanks for posting them.

I'll buy it at $1 per MMBTU. I want the rights to all of the Macondo natural gas production, and I'll lay the line to take it. All you have to do is deliver it at 1000 psi.

Can I buy a working interest in the project?

F&D, I think QuantumUs hinted at the right answer: burning is better because methane is a more potent GHG than CO2. (I read that in an earlier thread.)

Flaring CH4 is the lesser of two evils. Molecule for molecule, CH4 has 16-21x the GHG effect as CO2, so combusting one CH4 into one CO2 and 2H2Os is preferable from an environmental perspective. (CH4 + 2O2 --> C02 + 2H20)

Not releasing CH4 at all is best while flaring is 16-21x better than releasing CH4 if you are most concerned about GHG and its climate effects.

Q: How do they put something that big onto a flowing, unstable oil and gas well a mile underwater?
A: Very, very carefully.

Does anyone know what the Enterprise ROV 2 is looking at? It's the bottom of a large round object with a pipe coming out of the bottom.

It's the bottom of the LMRP that is suspended from the Discoverer Enterprise that was being used to suck the oil from the top of the sheared riser.

The pipe you see going into it is the upper end of the pipe that was attached to cap #4. They are trying to disconnect that pipe from the bottom of the suspended LMRP, but over the weeks of exposure to the oil/gas plume, hydrate ice formed from the reaction of the methane gas, cold water and pressure and completely filled the bottom of the LMRP, making it impossible to disconnect the pipe from the LMRP.

Since they don't want to have to disassemble the entire riser/LMRP (they would have to pull it up, and unbolt section after section of riser) in order to disconnect the pipe, they are using the ROV to squirt methanol on the ice to dissolve/melt it.

BTW, cap #4 is no longer attached to the other end of the pipe, as yesterday, they used a saw to cut it off.

Might they have to cut the entire LMRP off if they can't de-ice it?

Possible, I guess, and now they have the technology to unbolt it from the top, so they could remove it that way, too, but I think the reason they're trying to remove the pipe that went to the cap is so that they can use the Enterprise's riser/LMRP combo as another tool in the oil containment/capture project.

They've shown considerable progress in melting the hydrate ice over the past 24 hours. Yesterday, when they started, the hydrate was flush with the hole in the bottom of the LMRP, while today they look like they've dissolved a foot or more of the hydrate.

I think they'll eventually get the pipe freed.

That is the riser pipe above the recently discarded cap and below the Enterprise, which has moved away from the wellhead. The cruddy mushroom thing is below a cubical cage that carried equipment and hose to service the cap with methanol and nitrogen when it was gearing up. The bottom of the cruddy mushroom is gooped up with frozen methane hydrate and tar after catching the flow of hydrocarbons for a month.

Here's a simple cause and effect question I would like to ask all the folks who are pointing the finger at BP or the Federal government for causing the oil spill. How much gasoline do you use per day? It's an easy question to answer. Mine is a little less than a gallon.

jag -- Maybe a little OT but everyone is sitting and waiting for something to happen so maybe a little poll would help pass the time. I average about 2.5 gallons/day (23 mpg).

12 miles round trip to the office @ 36mpg = 1/3 gallon per day.

Direct use, about 0.3 gal/day on average @ a bit over 25 mpg (0 most weekdays, but weekend trips add up a bit)

Direct use less than a gallon a week. Indirect, I have no idea. I do like eating, and as we know the production of food takes up insert outlandish percentage here My bike is over 20 years old, so the energy used to produce it should be long depreciated.

Now, can I sit at the cool table?

Direct work use - zero; my wife walks 1/2 mile each way, and I work at home. Direct nonwork use - about 1 gallon/day, mostly for vacations. Indirect use - quien sabe?

We make several short (<5 mile) trips a day mainly carrying stuff in our SUVs to/from our (non-residential) smallholding and to/from my office.

With European fuel taxes this costs us $100s a month.

I'm so glad I don't commute 30+ miles each way each day!

This also shows us that in a fuel shortage we would have to live on our smallholding ... which is illegal under UK law.

The planning laws need relaxing if society expects food to be grown by small concerns locally - but of course the rich retired people will block all such attempts : "We retired to the country to have roses grow around the door - not to hear the noise of tractors and not to smell the poo of animals. And those church bells need to be stopped too. And those wind turbines will NEVER be allowed near us."

I'm one of those waste not want not Swedish types. When I was drilling oil wells in Midland, I think I had the only VW in town. I was known as the California I understand your OT comment. Don't know how to make a poll on Oil Drum, but while we are watching the oil spill movie...a poll might be more entertaining than eating popcorn or games of geologist/engineer grab ass.

I ride my bike the 12 km's to work most days if possible. Then there is the running around with kids... I use about a tank (60 liters) per two weeks. But I have a V8 2006 Dodge Dakota. My motorcycle is to expensive to run in this province. So I am both clean and dirty.

About 3.2 gal/day (22mpg). I've been making a conscious effort to improve that, and I think I might be getting closer to 24mpg now based on how long my current tank of gas has lasted me. But my car's computer has about 3k miles at 21 and change messing up the average.

And for the person who was wondering: I think the point here is that, if we all reduced our fuel consumption, BP wouldn't have been drilling in the Gulf at all.

I drive about average of 1000 miles per year. Wife about the same. Neither kid had a car even through undergraduate school. One biked to school growing up (3.50 miles each way-hills too). Uses bike at college and has for summer jobs in several cities( one was 10 mile commute each way-hills too).Other used public transport in university town. Only bought car in grad school because of work that requires it. So how many KWh of electricity does everyone use per year for their home?

I am not sure how many KW my house uses per year but when we moved in (2001) our June power bill was right at $450. We have since insulated the entire house (back in the 40's they didn't insulate that much in the south), new appliances, replaced the wood siding with Tyvec and Hardi-plank siding, new outside AC unit, new water heater, and replaced all the old counter-weight windows with double insulated windows. Our power bill last month was $122.35.

Well done. Amazing what can be done to older houses.

About 1 gallon per day (15mpg)

When my daughter is in school - closer to 1.5 - 2 gallons per day on school days.

Many, many less miles than I used to drive in my previous career. Used to drive about 500 miles per week, now about 100 miles per week. That helps since as discussed in the TOD How Green Is Your Ride thread - , mine is not very green, but my miles driven footprint has gone way down. Also, building websites is my second job. If my ducks ever get all lined up in a row and that becomes my main job, that would mean even less miles driven.

In my summer job as a boat operator, 50 gallons a day is not unheard of. I could quit in protest of so much fuel use, but then someone else would take over.

8 miles each way to the office (16 rt) and 25 mpg .....unless I am in my speed demon mode.

Normally I am probably less than a gallon a day.....

Here too, I have a 15+ gallon tank and fill up about every 20 days or so......the Island is so tiny and other than work I never leave, also I ride my bike or use the golf cart alot to get around.

About 1/3 gal per day.

What does that have to do with the Federal gov not doing its job or BP doing its job unsafely?

gmf -- Everything, of course.


It has everything to do with the Federal Government who we elect and BP who we buy our gasoline from. I find more progress is made by pointing the holier than thou finger at oneself. After seeing the Santa Barbara Oil spill in 1969, I saw the most foolish bumper sticker on the back of a 1960's Cadillac which got around 10 mpg...GOO...for Get Oil organization to stop drilling in the Santa Barbara Channel.

Out of the Santa Barbara Oil Spill came Earth Day, etc and along with it...more gas guzzler's with save the earth bumber stickers and the whole three ring circus which has led us to the present day with "earth conscious" SUV drivers, etc. If we are not willing to change our personal habits, who cares how great your intellectual discourse might's still BS and we will continue to feed huge dollars into fighting wars over oil, sending huge amounts of money to the Middle East, and destroying the planet we all share in the process.

No matter how you cut it, change begins with you and me...and if we are not willing to change our habits, then we are agreeing accept the consequences. I guess I have this blind faith thing about being American...we can do what we put our minds to...all we need to do is put our minds into doing needing no more OPEC imports within ten years or something along those lines.

Figure about 30,000 gallons each time our POTUS flies his taxpayer provided 747 to give a 20 minute Earth day speech he could have given just as well from the Oval office.

Hmm, let's see:

1 Earth Day speech per year; 300,000,000 Americans per POTUS; 365 days per year. So my indirect share of Obama's Earth Day speech is, per amerman, 30,000 gallons/yr x 1 yr/365 days x 1/300,000,000 =

1/3,650,000 of a gallon per day. Fine, I amend my previous estimate of my own usage from 1 gallon per day to 1.0000003 gallon/day. Or less if Obama doesn't fly to the location of the speech every year.

Everything d00d we're presenting our credentials, you'll never make it to the cool table with that attitude.

If the cool table includes you...I'll pass.

I'll take the seat!


We're responsible for drilling, not for spilling.

Similarly, we're responsible for the commercial transport of Cheeto's, but not for drunken drivers who plow Cheeto trucks into traffic jams.

40 mpg @20 mi/day (that's life in the stix, folks)

I commute by train, and I live walking distance from the station, so I'm using about 5 gallons a month, in most months, driving weekends and one weekday (running after-work errands). About 0.2 gallons a day, it looks like. (In eight years, I've driven 37,000 miles, including three or four 800-mile round-trip drives.)

Maybe 15 gallons/ month. Usually fill up once a month now.
My name is Mike, and I am an oilcoholic.
I'm solar powered. Putting more juice into the grid than I use.

None (no car).

OUTSTANDING TODERS! Just as I suspected. As a group we're doing our part. I had began to feel a little guilty about contemplating buying a new 4WD 4D V8 pickup. But no more. Just Swifty's savings alone more than justify my purchase. On average "we" are doing great. Is this a great country or what!

Have I got a deal 4 U! I'd be happy to sell you a slightly used (only 190k miles) 10 yo 4WD 3D (discount available for -1 D), for the right price of course. ;-)

Just Swifty's savings alone more than justify my purchase.

Since my lack of wheels is lowering the TOD average, seems like I oughta be getting some free rides from some of yez...

But you are a rich oil baron. What's a little more gasoline to you?

I thnik Rockman is bored!

Heck yeah I'm bored. I think most of us are waiting for the BIG SHOW to start. Remember I don't watch the ROV circus and since I now try to limit by Blue Bell stories there's not much to focus on.

I live in a very remote part of west Texas. My town is a might bit over 2 miles from end to end, so when at home, I walk. However, I live 65 miles from the nearest grocery store, 85 miles from the nearest decent grocery store and 125 from the nearest real grocery store. I try to only make one trip per month, carpooling, to the decent store. Once per year I let it rip and drive, carpooling again, the 130 miles to a real city and for my Christmas, birthday and clothes spree.
Doctors are a different story. Lesson: don't get hurt.
Gallons per month? About 16, average.

I live in the sticks, so unless I become a hermit, I have to drive more than most. But I have 3 vehichles, pickup only drivien when I need to haul something 15 mpg, Mazda MX 5 to haul lesser things and bad weather 30 mpg, motorcycle to haul just me and really small things 60 mpg. Also I try to plan trips to town to do a number of errands at one time to reduce milage. My gasoline bill usually runs about $300 and I live about 11 miles from nearest Wal-Mart,so I guess about 3 to 4 gal a day.

Also I produce more than enough oil every day to cover my energy needs, since I own an oil & gas production company, I don't think I am quite a competator to BP yet. :)

I ride my motorcycle instead of driving my truck, not to save the planet, it is because I am a cheapskate. It is called the market at work. Gas costs a lot and I know it is going to get more expensive.

About 8.5 miles round trip to the train station each day, 4Runner getting average 20mpg, so call it .5gal/day during the week. Weekends could be less but usually MUCH more. When I was younger a weekend trip to ski country was 600 to 1,000 miles easy. Not so much now but still a lot more than mid week. Between my wife and I we still do about 20,000/year. Her car get about 30mpg so some back of the napkin calculations come up with about 2.4 gal/per day average for the year for the family. I'd be willing to trade the 2002 4Runner for a new Forester or Outback if there are any takers.

Less than a gallon a week.

Jaguar: "Here's a simple cause and effect question I would like to ask all the folks who are pointing the finger at BP or the Federal government for causing the oil spill. How much gasoline do you use per day? It's an easy question to answer. Mine is a little less than a gallon."

Hey Jag, I'll PLAY the devil's advocate and bite:

I use whatever oil related stuff I want.

My use in no way excuses the cascading series of bad decisions, shortcuts, and questionably criminal acts BP chose to make with this oil well disaster. Hasn't BP shown a continuiing pattern of this? Furthermore, BP still refuses to make available information we all need or want to correctly analyze what is actually happening and why or even what truly will happen at this well in the future.

BP and our government started out saying there was no leak and for several days reported that then acknowledged perhaps the leak was 1000 BPD. Of course, the doom and gloom crowd had it more right than they and the officially reported "leak" became 5000 BPD. Then the official reports became 10000, then 20000, and now they are talking about being able and needing to contain 80,000 BPD?

BP and those like them deserve every grief immaginable IMHO. Look at the increasing devastation they have imposed the environment and on the people. How much wealth, health, and happiness have been lost to those affected by BP's foolishness? I still see TPTB claiming the contaminants in the environment are safe even if they really aren't sure. Let's wait and see if the kids in the waters ... heck, they're not my kids. Have fun. Enjoy swimming and breathing in a toxic soup mixed with surfactants and God knows what else.

So many are suffering now because of this remarkably avoidable accident but I fail to see a connection between my use of oil and BP making the oil available.

For example, if I want to drift my motorcycle around a rural highway corner at 135 MPH and wreck, do I sue (or my estate?) the oil industry for making cheap oil conveniently available to me? Certainly following the speed laws are nonsense. BP, our gov't and industry regulators, and those with oversight responibility, and the rig operators are responsible for this gusher, not those who buy their products.

So yeah, I burn whatever I feel like and can afford. Sometimes I drive around just looking at the scenery wasting fuel. I sometimes burn much more fuel towing my boat for hundreds of mile to burn even more fuel in it. I buy plastics and fertilizer and all sorts of stuff made, at least in part, from oil. I suppose I could rationalize it by saying I'm single, have no kids, can afford it, and frankly could care less what mess I leave behind for the future generations.

But then again, I'd kind of come out sounding like Tony wanting his life back or Obama having to cancel a golf trip to see things are getting done ... as he wants us to think he is doing. That's not me though and I trust at leasst someone here feels or knows that about me. This is a tragedy and future good must come from it IMHO.

We could do what the early church advocated and make everyone equally benefit from a common and shared prosperity. You who save money by not using oil but who are in the oil industry please give the excess money to those who lost money because of what the oil industry, and BP in particular, did to them. Didn't BP just curtail or end the payments they were making to those victimized by this barely controlled gusher?

Acts 2:44 And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common;

45 and they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need.

46 Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart,

47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.

... but then again that sounds at worst borderline communism. No?

My car's gearbox packed up months ago and I haven't bothered to fix it, so I use zero petrol.

Luckily, I live in the suburbs near a busy main road. I can walk to the local shops for the basics, and take buses and minibus taxis to bigger malls and one place where I do computer support for extra cash.

Also, no heater or aircon. Cape Town has a mild Mediterranean climate. Right now it's a chilly winter's evening but I'm perfectly comfortable in a jersey, scarf and beanie. My apartment has a large west-facing picture window which functions as an effective solar heater during the afternoon. In summer it gets pretty hot, but not unbearably so. I close the curtains in the afternoon and that keeps the insolation down.

I live in an enclave community inside Dallas so that 98% of things we do (office, daughter's school, church, shopping, friends etc) are less than one mile from our home. My wife and I togther drive less than 8k miles per year for a family of three which includes my business driving to clients/meetings and running the typical taxi service for a 12-year old with a busy social calendar. So, less than 1 gal. per day.

60% of my in-city business meetings are now on-line in my company's web meeting and telcom platform along with 95% of in in-state and out-of-country meetings now virtual too.

My home was built in the 1930's with all of the good things and bad thing about the building techniques of its day. It has been updated a couple of times before it became our home but the energy efficient was never touched since house was built. I installed as much blown-in insulation as my attic would hold. Dropped our electrical bill from $800 - $1,000 per month in middle of summer to $200 - $300; similar percentage of saving in gas bill for winter. Haven't started dealing with the air migration from 1930's windows yet.

My "green" daughter is very proud and the pay-back on the blown-in insulation was probably 3-4 months. Good example of being green making good economic sense too.

Not as easy to answer as you might think. Easier to calculate national average. Here's best I can do of mine:

1.3 gallons/day driving.
1.8 gallons/day flying (2 x 1.25h trips @ ~4.9g/seat/hour on SWA Boeing 737-800).
?.? gallons/day plastics, asphalt and other petro products

3.1 + X.x gallons/day

Seismic sensors? I haven't found any details as to why they're taking this step. By sensors I assume they mean geophones. They essentially pick up vibrations (sound waves) moving through the earth. Depending on how the spread is laid out it can determine the depth as well as the direction of any sound coming from the well. But I assume that's what they want to listen for. But why that curiosity now? Just pure speculation on my part: do they anticipate the possibility of inducing a shallow underground blow out if they constrict/shut in the flow at the BOP? There has been much speculation re: the condition of the shallow csg and if it's been leaking already. I would hope someone in the MSM would ask Thad about this effort.

Hi Rock,

From something I read this morning, your speculation is right on. I read a post on a blog somewhere (going back now looking for the link), the blogger stated that in addition to doing pressure tests for well integrity when the new stack is completed, they are also going to be using seismic sensors (geophones) to collect more data. I too assume about an underground blowout. Has this been done before?

As you posted this, I too was looking for more details. Will follow up if I find something.

Edit to head off conspiracy theories: No end-of-days theories in what I read; just another way to get data about a possible underground blowout as they start closing in the well from the valves on the new stack. Sounds like a “sound” precaution. Sorry for the pun; couldn’t resist.

Edit 2: I found this upthread from snakehead:

Also, snakehead's reference was this I believe: or

Quote from this article:

The pressure test, to be monitored by seismic sensors on the seafloor, may determine whether the well bore can withstand the pressure of being shut, National Incident Commander Thad Allen said today in a CNN interview.

“We need to know what the pressure is inside that cap to know what our next steps are, whether we can shut it in or will have to produce oil to keep the pressure off,” Allen said.

The well can be shut if it withstands the expected pressure once the valves are closed, Suttles said. Pressure lower than expected would suggest leakage in the well bore, indicating BP should continue to let oil flow to ships on the surface for processing, he said. BP and Obama Administration officials will make that decision, he said.

Edit 3: Here is the interview that has been cited by all: Thad Allen mentions the seismic sensors about 40% into the interview:

bb -- actually using geophones to located moving fluids in the subsurface is not uncommon. They can set up a spread when they are trying to track exactly where fluids are moving when the frac a well. But I've never heard of it being done in this situation . But it should least in thoery.

Slightly out-of-the-box thinking. No risk and who knows what it might yield as to new insights. I like it!

I think they are trying to use micro-seismic techniques to tell whether the increased pressures from a shut-in are causing fractures in the shallow sections around the borehole.

As you've noted, this technique is common when you deliberately try to frac a well. Each fracture produces a little pop, the location of which can be pinpointed from the geophones. Connect the dots and you have a picture of all the fractures you've induced.

What's different in this case is that fractures are bad. If the micro-seismic show significant fracturing, they'll open up the rams to release the pressure.

Rock: Yep. If there are vibrations from moving fluid after the well is shut in they might be able to pick them up. Of course there are two wells going down nearby too.

They could shut down the RW pumps when needed to get rid of their signals. That's a common practice onshore when you need to record near some acoustic source. It literally won't take more than a minute or two to get a base line reading. Also, I mentioned using such an array to map frac fluid movement. We shouldn't hear any frac propagation from any where near the surface....not brittle enought to "pop". But fluid movement might be heard. Not really different than putting your ear against a water pipe...just a little more sophisticated. The high water saturation in the shallow sediments should make for good transmission.

Rockman... that isn't going to happen here. There are no sensor at depth. There is no discussion of surface array. This is a passive monitoring system with no ability to calibrate depth or direction and a very large number of sources of noise. It's the grumblings form the nearest source that then drown out ALL others, and that source is the well head assembly with 40-60,000 boed moving through it.

Mucho thanks henny. I actually had some doubt they were going to go with such a sophisticated approach. It could probably be done in 5,000' but it would be record setting by miles I suspect.

Rockman - speculation to follow - what I can see is that they will attatch a sensor to the BOP or in the mud near the casing. They will monitor and adjust the seisitivity to the "normal" background stuff using an alarm system. They will tune it out like a squelch on a walkie-talkie. Once they begin to try to choke the well, they will monitor the number and frequency of events above the threshold as a safety precaution.

I think they can pick up the signals - and they may use the second relief well to run a vertical seismic profile as well, think about it. If I were BP, I would run a very sensitive microphone in relief well number two, to see if it picks up the sound of the oil rushing up the wild well. This may give them an idea regarding what's the oil flow path like.

So they have trained the ROVs to be juggies. I wish i could have seen that, seen them plant the sensors, for old times sake.

It depends on what you mean by theory. First of all you need to have sensors near the location of the zone of interest. Based on that, the closest zone is the well head itself. So there is no possible way that geophones (hydrophones) will be used for anything other than an integrity check as pressure builds up.

The new cap is 30 feet away form the spool now as seen by the Scandi ROV1

The mark one ear is often overlooked in today's technological society. In the submarine world sound is all, it is not only our ears but also our eyes and sense of touch. Acoustic vibration analysis is taken very seriously yet at the same time a watch keeper on his rounds holding his long shaft driver onto a bearing and up to his ear is redundant even though the watch keeper will instantly report a change in bearing noise and identify a probable fail. The human watch keeper does not produce a paper trace that can be analysed.

On the subject of fluid leaks from a pipe, all a water board inspector had to do in the past was to place his valve key on the pipe and up to his ear to identify a leak, it really IS that easy.

This also answers at some on my questions about why they might attempt to shut the well in now, after they abandoned the BOP-on-BOP approach after TopKill.

Here is my reasoning. Is it sound?

(1) BOP-on-BOP could have perhaps shut in the well if the well would have held the pressure. However, if it couldn't, there would not have been any fall-back position because they could only shut in the well not recover the oil/ng if it didn't work. Also, shuting in the well carried a risk and, without a backup, perhaps a big risk.

(2) TopKill indicated potential trouble so BOP-on-BOP without a backup could have made the situation much worse.

(3) Now, with the new stack, they can test the well, try to shut it in and then, if it can't take the pressure, they can now produce from the new stack and take all of the oil/ng topside (thus managing the pressure) in a control situation through multiple risers to multiple processing ships until the RW(s) kill the well. Shutting in the well carries the same risk as before, but now they have a backup that makes this a more acceptable risk if they make the attempt.

Actually make sense to this outsider/newbie.

Edit for typos and clarity.

Good points. And as far as the criticisms, there's been bumbling and lost time, no doubt. How could there not be when there was no existing plan other than the Ixtoc playbook to deal with this.

But what I like about the solution they have come up with now is that it has been doen right, it builds in multiple options and takes a long view.

Yes, it took weeks to put it all together, but when you look back at Ixtoc and how long that took, and when you consider that the relief wells could fail, it seems the time was well spent.

We should be set up now to deal with all scenarios:

1. 100% containemt shortly

2. Possibly shut in the well (but what would the point be if we have to kill it from the bottom any way?)

3. Facilitates bottom kill, makes success more likely.

4. Provides a means of 100% capture over the long haul if the relief wells take 10 months like Ixtoc.

That's better than the BOP could have done. And if they did the BOP and discovered they could not shut it in due to hole condition, they would have been weeks behind where we are now.

2. Possibly shut in the well (but what would the point be if we have to kill it from the bottom any way?)

If they're able to shut the well in safely, they won't have to worry about releasing O&G during hurricane-driven suspensions of containment operations.

Not to mention having to do things like process oil/ng topside in close proximity and even add things into the proximity like flaring. This is a lot of chemical energy on ship keeping station close to each other. If there was a honest-to-God accident on one of the processing ships .... who knows. Even with good/great operational and safety records of these ships (??), accidents can happen any time.

I don't think the cost of this topside process would even enter into a decision tree; it would be the containment of risk as well as the oil.

To an outsider/newbie, "Shut in the sucker" seems logical; IF it does not negatively impact the RW work.

Thanks! Now it makes sense.

The phrase, "primum non nocere" ("first, do no harm") is a pretty wise approach in any profession.

Then, if you must make risky move to control a far greater risk, you better have a way to fix things (a fallback plan) if your original idea falls flat on its face and actually makes things worse.

Either that or develop a fondness for tar and feathers ;-) ... in multiple meanings of that phrase.

Edit: As bad as the current situation is, it could be made a lot worse. Figuring our what NOT to do is just as important as figuring out what to do.

Having only bit of a better understanding of nuclear weapons than a typical layman, I still can think of a bunch of scientific and engineering reasons not to use them to try and “seal the well.” To me, it falls into the category of one of the dumbest ideas I ever heard along with using the Imperial Death Star to implode all of Earth to seal the well.

However, if for no other reason, I would oppose the use of a nuclear device to seal a wild well on the basis of the violation of the primum-no-nocere principle. By the time you set the damned thing off, you’ve probably screwed the pooch so badly that you have no other fallback options.

You can then only develop a fondness for tar and feathers with a slight greenish glow.

They are holding that instrument in the oil flow again. Same one they went around the wellhead with.

It's time for a litle humor. Not fully off-topic, but only 99%.

Dateline: December 3, 2219

The Xerius news service.

68 days ago while some amateur scavengers were seeking iron or steel to scavenge in the Gulf of Shimm, which used to be known as the Gulf of Mexico, they found a nearly intact treasure on the seafloor, only 1200 feet down. Hundreds of tons of metal which, according to computer records, was an oil drilling ship named "Deepwater Horizon". Not far from it were 3 oil wells that were forgotten, as records of them can't be found among the records of the past oil wells.

The unlicensed scavengers - otherwise known as the Herrick Band - pulled this drill ship up from the seafloor and refloated it. After doing a thorough 3d scan of it, they towed it to shore in the Republic of Looseyanna, and sold it for enough to make them immensely wealthy for life. However, that wasn't enough.

Using some old primitive 3d modelling systems, they constructed a replica of the ship, with the broken parts fixed, of course, and took it back out to sea. Apparently, this old ship used some kind of mechanical boring device to push holes through rock. But the Herrick Band didn't do that, instead, they used a short range Xasar bit and some field generators to dig into those three unknown wells. Apparently, they told us, the three wells merged into one, and for some reason, the one, original well, actually still sat atop the largest oil field discovery known to man in over 150 years.

Oil used to be used as fuel, before it was learned how to directly catalyze the carbon in the air into whatever hydrocarbon fuel you wanted or needed. However, this find will make the Herrick Band the wealthiest people on earth. With hundreds of cubic miles of burnable gas, but far more important, real oil, which can be made into lubricants. The kind of lubricants antique machinery needs to operate. Museums world-wide clamor for it, and now we have a new source - one apparently large enough to last for decades, if not centuries.

For our younger readers, or those not familiar with the processes, catalyzed lubricants are incompatible with historic machinery designs, ruining seals, hoses, etc. Although we can catalyze substitutes for old fashioned gasoline and diesel from air, the lubricants needed are simply not workable. The market reactions to this were nothing short of explosive, as word spread that soon, antique collectors world wide could again, operate their classic collections. It is estimated it will take another 3 months before the oil is collected, transported to a processing facility, packaged in small quantities for collectors and distributed publicly.

The American Historical News Society assisted in finding the name of the drilling rig that was recycled into new metal and the federal department of obsolete industries provided us with the animations and drawings used to help us show you this incredible find.

Notes: AHNS said this was the site of a huge ecological disaster centuries ago. At that time, the American government banned oil production from under water, and less than 12 months later, the entire American and world economies collapsed, but they're not sure if it's just a coincidence or if it's directly cause and effect. News records from contemporary accounts put the blame on this action, though.

This well apprently escaped exploitation by the State-Nations that followed the collapse of the United States, mostly due to having been declared "too dangerous" to re=open. Most of the coastal state-nations re-allowed extraction, which continued until all known reserviors were exhuasted. Apparently, records of this particular well, with it's odd 3 opening design were removed, and some clues indicate it may have been done by a now extinct cult known as the "Sainte Obamma Saviors", who were known to have destroyed lots of official records that were unflattering to the founder, it's just not clear who the founder was, presumably someone famous at the time, but whose exitence to history has been well rescinded.

An example of the lubricant use, is this "John Deere" club, who has tractors from as far back as 311 years, when mechanical means were used to actually cultivate food crops, rather than being nurtured by genetically programmed bio-robots.


Hats off to the ROV operators, who must be almost ready to have a few sighs of relief and may or may not have some thoughts of some time off to decrompress or vacation...

Dateline: July 12, 2010
TOD News & Commentary Service.

Using an advanced electron microjokescope, M. Onan Batterload today confirmed the existence of anti-humour. "It looks like a republican talking point," Batterload said, "but smaller." He named the new particle the "Litle," after Loosyanne Goldberg's litle dick.

Edit: 'announced the discovery' to 'confirmed the existence'

Man look at the ocean int II. Working at the base of the BOP. Better be careful. Look at how it is close to tipping over.

and the oil gushing up around it...........LOL

Someone asked in the previous forum about the standard duration for fabrication of some of the sub-sea components, while I have not pulled out my old hard drive out I will try to answer from memory. As most will know from their own businesses, for the past 20 years most businesses try to keep inventory minimized, FIFO (first in, first out) and other techniques are used, and the oil field manufacturing business is no different. Cameron for example has standard designs for Trees, but you don't build $100M parts to sit on a shelf, they will have enough parts for their normal number of land and shallow water trees ordered per year however most of their BOP's and Trees are ordered per job. Standard ordering time to delivery is approx. 9 months. They have two scheduling groups, a production scheduling group that handles the standard line and a project scheduling group that handles major projects (I worked in project scheduling), one of the things that we have to consider in project scheduling is when is the earliest we will have enough design done to order materials esp. large pipe and castings (that big chuck of steel they start with to mill into those connections that wind up being 30" and above diameter and 2' or more tall) to make sure we can get them on order for when the steel companies have that size scheduled to run. The steel and pipe companies only run certain sizes at certain times of the years, sometimes there are only 3 times a year that they are producing the size we need for an order. My last HPU was 6-7 months delivery. Most Sub-Sea jobs I worked on were total length of 12-18 months EPC (engineering,procurement,construction) but I'm first on, last off so the actual manufacturing/construction time was more in the 9-12 months range, but I did have one project that was for 12 standard shallow water trees, the first of the 12 rolled off the line around the 9th month, with the others following and the last one completed by month 12. Hope this helps.

This inventory situation affects all the components, we often are rushed to determine how many valves we will need of different sizes (best guess within +/- 10%)for something like a production manifold to pre-order the quantity needed so that the manufacturer has time to schedule those in .. the purchase requisition will be written as a "for =/- quantity with actuall to be determined by a certain date" which gives engineering the time to refine the design for actual quantities while allowing the manufacturing facilities time to order all their materials needed.

thanks dancer...

This morning, in response to a commissioner's "what if the relief wells fail?", Wells mentioned the ongoing work on the design of an undersea pipeline and said that the necessary piping has already been ordered.

Exactly, first job I had we had components on 2-3 year backorder. People seem to believe you can just walk into a store and pull this stuff off the shelf. You can't. I wonder how many other projects got raped and pillaged to build this. I believe they have done exceptionally well to hit this build time.


I will lay odds that every piece used in this was pillaged off of other projects, exactly what was done with the Angus Plant rebuild I was on. Every pump, vessel, reactor and instrument was virtually 100% stolen from other jobs, we paid double up on almost everything and sometimes higher as there are penalties for not meeting project dates, so we were not just paying for the material but what they were going to have to pay in penalties for not delivering to the project it was originally being built for and the overtime costs for them to re-build those items. Even with that it took us 9 months total, estimated fast-track project (where engineering and construction are overlapped as much as possible, ie, construction starts when Engineering is at 30-35%) of that size would of been approx. 14 months.

If I remember right (hey I'm old and out of the business for 6 yrs now) the tree connector (by the way looks like a really large quick connect like you use on hoses) had over 200 hours of milling time alone and that is not all done at once and there were over 10 check points at which your casting could get scrapped .. on the 12 trees I had three castings not make through all the check points, at least one not salvageable for the project.

I't unfortunate you had to work with vendors who were so slow. I hope this **how difficult it is to get** isn't an atta' for BP. I don't care how many jobs they needed to cannabalize to make it happen or how much it costs BP. Actually most of what was needed wasn't difficult to procure. The piping and flanges are stock items and actually they have done poorly. They have had plenty of time to get it right. Most of us learn from our mistakes or at least the mistakes of others, and BP has done neither IMHO.

I believe that this July 5, 2010 WSJ article - which I found on ASPO-USA via the Energy Bulletin - has not been posted here yet. By the way, it shows a picture of the A Whale. I see that it was built as a bulk carrier, not a tanker. But in the MSM, a large commercial ship is always a supertanker:

“Obama Decried, Then Used, Some Bush Drilling Policies”

“…The administration was apprehensive about expanding offshore drilling. But it also hoped to get a legislative package on climate change through Congress. At the center of the bill was a controversial and potentially expensive provision requiring companies to acquire permits to release carbon dioxide.

To navigate Capitol Hill, the administration needed to strike a balance between the "green energy" projects favored by environmentalists and liberals, and the traditional oil and gas projects favored by Republicans, whose support would be crucial in the Senate. Continuing to promote offshore drilling was part of that bargain.

But the federal appeals court decision, which came just days after Mr. Salazar's tour, threatened to throw a wrench in that process. The case was brought two years earlier by indigenous Alaskans and a coalition of environmental groups. It challenged a Bush-era plan to lease large chunks of offshore Alaska to oil drilling.

The groups argued the strategy didn't adequately account for the whole range of environmental perils raised by oil drilling on the outer shelf.

The appeals court agreed, ruling that the federal program was based on "irrational" analysis. The government's own assessment, the court found, weighed only the impact of oil washing up on shorelines. In a foreshadowing of the post-spill debate, the court noted that the analysis didn't address the impact of a significant spill further out at sea…”

Please note those who were critical of Judge Feldman striking the moratorium that the same basic reasoning and principles were deployed by the court opf appeal here to halt drilling until further studies are done to properly assess the full risk.

Having judges hold the govt. to account and to the law is a good thing in my view, regardless of which side you are on.

"Having judges hold the govt. to account and to the law is a good thing in my view, regardless of which side you are on."

So the negligent Dem Congress pols who in 3+ years FAILED to toughen US drilling policy/regs, and the Obama Dem party hack apointees who failed enforcement, and issued the failed rig waivers are ALL in jail for negligence?

Amerman, it's a klepto-oligarchy or an oligarchic kleptocracy. Red, Blue, feh.

But Amerman, we would have to lock up Dick Cheney, then, too. Know what i mean?

Geez,Enough Already! Free Republic is Thataway!--------->

I am sure many of you have wondered why first the spool is being attached and then the new stack when the stack could have been installed directly to the present flange. The transition spool is the life blood of this operation if all else fails. It allows us to remove the stack if it fails in order to try a different system to contain the well which may consist of the same diameter pipe with hydraulic connectors on each pipe which would bring the spill to the surface where it will be captured and carried away by tankers. The politics involved here are tremendous. If this well cannot be shut down and we must contain this well until it runs dry----- the arguments for the continuation of off shore drilling will be under high scrutiny for many years.

The spool is attached on top of a flexible swivel joint, is it not? Balancing a 150,000 pound stack on top of a joint that swivels doesn't seem too smart to me. They must have secured the joint so that it can swivel no more, correct (I hope)?

Kent Wells briefing, 10 July:

On the flex joint, yes, we have already straightened the flex joint. It was three degrees off relative to the (VOP) over the last week and a bit. We got a number of hydraulic jacks down there, jacked it up, and we put it on saddle blocks to kind of hold it, and we have that all perfectly aligned. So that’s done.

They jacked it straight then wedged it.


To geo_man. I agree. Also the blown out BOP itself is setting at a 11 to 12 degree off vertical angle. They say that they jacked the flex joint to be straight with the BOP beneath it. Seems to me the entire device including the lower 450 ton blow out protector would be at this angle. This is all a terrible risk as far as I can tell. With my initial plan to BP (which solved this spill) I warned them that any attempt to stop this spill could result in the largest bottle rocket the world has ever seen. They are going to test this top cap with both capture systems turned off from the bottom BOP. scary stuff. And instruments to test for ground trembling on the sea floor while trying to shut down the well with the new cap. WE must all start praying that they know what their doing. God bless.

With your 450 ton BOP and now adding a 150,000 lb top cap/stack, that is just over a million lbs total. Assuming about 13% loss of weight in water, that is still nearly a million lbs. Just how much weight can you put on the DP/joint below the BOP before it buckles? There must be a limit, I would think. Especially if it is all sitting at a 12 degree angle.

How far would your "largest bottle rocket" get when it starts a mile below the ocean's surface?

Just curious.

Yair..."450 ton BOP"? Could someone clarify please. I have hauled a bit of big iron on lowboys and that sucker does'nt look like 450 tons to me


BP: Oil capture system in Aug/Sept if relief wells fail
12 Jul 2010 15:46:00 GMT
Source: Reuters

HOUSTON, July 12 (Reuters) - BP would implement a permanent oil-collection system at its Gulf of Mexico leak by late August or early September if a pair of relief wells fail to plug the gusher, a BP executive told the Obama oil spill commission on Monday.
"If the relief wells for whatever reason fail, the other option we are working on is we install what I will call a permanent collection system," said Kent Wells, senior vice president of exploration and production.
(Reporting by Kristen Hays, Editing by Sandra Maler)


Gail posted this site elswhere. A good start on the situation in the GOM right now. The only confusion will be their use of metric. Otherwise some nice graphics.

I've been watching these ROV's for days. How come no cepholopods ? I thought there is suposed to be great-vampire-sqids down that deep.

Be patient.

WASHINGTON, July 8, 2010 (Reuters) — Researchers have discovered two previously unknown species of bottom-dwelling fish in the Gulf of Mexico, living right in the area affected by the BP oil spill.

Researchers identified new species of pancake batfishes, a flat fish rarely seen because of the dark depths they favor. They are named for the clumsy way they "walk" along the sea bottom, like a bat crawling.

"One of the fishes that we describe is completely restricted to the oil spill area," John Sparks of the American Museum of Natural History in New York, said in a statement released on Thursday....

Besides, after reading the brilliant theoretical workup here, it's plausible that there are new, giant and horrible creatures emerging from the cracks in the granite and that we can't see them because their photons are stuck in the giant undersea lake of oil.

Well shoot, if they're pancake batfishies, maybe Matt Simmons' sources mistook a lake of maple syrup for oil?

Whatever it is, I'm getting irritated with having to type out "giant undersea lake of oil." From now on it'll be Lake Simmons.

That is all.

They've mostly been watching the World Cup. But now that's over (go Spain!) you might spot some:

WSJ and others say Salazar will announce the new moratorium this afternoon.

Hit the Bloomberg a while ago and "Gibbs is confident the new drilling ban will stand up in court", blab, blah, get the jist I'm sure.

The Graham-Reilly Commission is meeting in New Orleans today (Kent Wells testified this morning); they must be on lunch break now, but they're scheduled to sit until 5 PM; here's the Times-Pic's livefeed.

Am I understanding this NYT quote correctly?

... Mr. Suttles said crews made good progress on the capping work overnight, using remotely operated submersibles to bolt a connecting pipe in place on top of the well. The new cap will be set on top of the pipe and then attached to it with a hydraulic latching device.

He expressed confidence that the installation would succeed, but he warned that there could be delays, especially if ice-like crystals of methane and water form when the new cap is put on.

Given the number of engineering efforts that have failed since oil began gushing after the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion on April 20, the company has a looser-fitting cap on standby in case there are significant setbacks with the tighter-fitting cap.

The pressure tests would start shortly after the cap is installed, perhaps as soon as late Monday, and would continue for at least two days, during which time no oil should leak from the well, Mr. Suttles said.

He said crews encountered delays overnight in starting up a new collection system that could divert up to 25,000 barrels of oil a day to a surface ship, the Helix Producer. That system should begin operating Monday, he said, but it could then be shut down to conduct the pressure tests, as would an older system that has been diverting about 8,000 barrels a day to another surface vessel. ...

So the new cap all by itself (except for luck) could put a cork in it?


Dang, syncro. I'm fighting a double case of pinkeye today and can barely see, so I didn't want to trust that I had that right. Shazaam (fingers crost)!

i'm sorry to hear that, Lotus. i get that sometimes, too. when it strikes, it strikes bad. Both eyes get so gooey you can't see.

Thanks, syncro. Yes, I'm pretty oog-ed out. (But enough of that.)

Do you antibiotics? Bacitracin or something?

Nope, just good ol' hot compresses. Ahhhhhhh.

Yes, unless they start seeing pressure readings that concern them after they've closed off the flow exiting from the top of the new capping stack.

But, if they do, that doesn't mean their work is done. They still have to complete the RW, kill the well and plug with cement.

Right, Hank, but does this mean the HP and sisters won't have to stay hooked up? The City of Ships can start to depopulate?

Maybe, but they will need to flow to the something during the kill and cementing processes. You don't do a bottom kill with out flowing the oil and gas in the well bore out the top, and I suspect they will have to retain a lot of capacity to do that.

Gotcha and thanks again. Bet they'll appreciate being able to stand down for a few days and bring their shoulders down from around their ears. Godspeed to that.

I too had heard that methane is a more potent greenhouse gas than CO2 but this still begs the question. Not just this site but I have driven past many oil refineries with flares. Is this not subject to EPA regs?


Yes, but I believe they have a permit to flare a small amout relative to the capacity of the refinery. I am sure they burn many times the amount of gas they flare in the refining process.

Don't much about refining, but my bet would be if they could not flare at all, they would instead explode, which would not be too good.

There was an earlier thread that addressed this issue. Worldwide it's a lot of CO2. My question about the GHG from this debacle in the Gulf is whose ledger is it going on? Ours or the UK?

Update on beach access issue for Sir TinFoil. Major Ex-Seal from the Not Alabama River Constables is examining the issue of being stopped by Sir Like Shrek in the Putt Putt River. Major Ex-Seal said that if I was physically standing in the Gulf of Mexico, even on foot, he had the duty to ensure Sir TinFoil's unimpeded 'navigation' pursuant to Not Alabama and Nowhere law. It would seem when visiting Shari-Shores and the issue is access, head for the Putt Putt and call the Not Alabama River Constables if Sir Police or Sir Rent A Police hassles you. If you have to obey they will let you know. If the City of Shangri-Shores is acting under its own authority without legislative or state executive support, then the Not Alabama River Constables would ensure your free passage in spite of contravening orders from city executives, unless it meets certain other special conditions. The oil spill is such a condition, but we had no oil. to read the story.

Major Ex-Seal said that if I was physically standing in the Gulf of Mexico, even on foot, he had the duty to ensure Sir TinFoil's unimpeded 'navigation' pursuant to Not Alabama and Nowhere law.

I assume that Major Ex-seal is an ex Navy Seal. I know they are ones to not take a lot of crap. I am currently helping one run as an independant for U.S. Congress.

CORRECTION: Dang I slipped. ...standing in the Putt Putt...

Wouldn't that make him Commander Ex-seal?

Yes since there are no Majors in the Navy, but he may be a Major in his current job.

Lt Commander navy = major army

Great stuff TFHG, that is really funny.

Great stuff TFHG, that is really funny.

F&D -- CO2 molecules last a long time in the atmoshere, CH4 does not

CH4 doesn't last forever, but when it degrades it's going to degrade to C02 plus water. So there's absolutely no downside to burning methane over simply releasing it. You're much better off converting it to CO2 straight away.

It is a pity that we flare as much methane as we do, but I think that's largely because of the costs (including energy costs) of collecting/transporting it. Someone posted a week or so ago about various technologies underdevelopment to allow small scale conversion of CH4 to other fuels (e.g. methanol) but apparently these still aren't ready for widespread distribution.

F&D -- CO2 molecules last a long time in the atmos[p]here

So that means all the Carbon 14 from all those nuclear tests is still running around up there as C(14)O2? Should be trivial to measure that, if true. If not true, then it is incorrect that CO2 lasts 100 yrs in the atmosphere as I've read elsewhere. I suggested it as a research project for a professor friend 5 years ago. Still no bites, leading me to suspect they don't really want to know the answer, or already have a good idea and don't like it.

I suspect that the CO2 from the nuclear tests first "distributes" itself between air and upper strata of the sea , after which it is "slowly" distributed by currents into the deep sea, or incorporated into the biosphere either on land (forests), or in the sea organisms, from where some of it eventually falls as detritus into deep water.

Those who want an even more educated result than mine can ask it of the scientists at, or search their archives, where this has probably already been answered.

I asked a similar question there 5 years ago. It was deleted by the moderators. Reworded and asked again. Deleted. Tried a third time on RealClimate and gave up. There are plenty of analyses of Carbon 12 and 13, just not 14 in the CO2. Perhaps they don't like this?
BTW hat's off to you for making me google for this, didn't take long (although the article is only 6 months old). I was already familiar with the fallout numbers, the rest was just connecting the dots.
Quote from the article emphasis mine:

By 1967, however, the figure shows that the concentrations measured in both places were approximately equal, indicating that the atmosphere was now well mixed. The subsequent decline in both places must then have been due to absorption by natural sinks (primarily biomass and the oceans). Both locations showed an exponential decline, as indicated by the heavy red and blue trend curves, with a time constant of 16.4 ±0.7 years. This result proves beyond any reasonable doubt that the residence time of CO­2 in the atmosphere is much shorter than assumed by the IPCC. This has profound implications for the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW), as it indicates that most of the CO2 emitted due to human activities has been absorbed long ago. Calculation shows that the quantity remaining in the atmosphere is less than 300 GT, or 40% of the measured increase in the atmospheric load.

Actually, it proves no such thing (referring to the sentence you highlighted). If I accept the numbers and the charts, it might show that C02 exchange with the oceans has a time constant of 16 years, but that's not the same as the residence time of C02 in the atmosphere. If you like, it might be the expected residence time of a particular molecule.

Basically, a carbon sink isn't like your kitchen sink where (you hope) what goes down will never come out again. There's constant mixing between the atmosphere and oceans (and biomass as well for that matter; plants take in C02 and then often release it when they die). Mixing isn't relevant to warming; what is relevant is processes that result in a net increase of C02 somewhere other than the atmosphere (e.g. dissolved in the oceans or deposited as carbon-based sediment; in living biomass or sequestered in a peat bog).

One more point: without those other, presumably slower processes, the oceans can't take up an infinite amount of CO2 either without becoming too acidic to support a lot of the creatures in the ocean food chain. So we better hope that these other longer term sink processes can dump CO2 out of the oceans fast enough to avoid anthropogenic lifeless oceans...

Yes, which is why CH4 has *only* 16-21x the GHG of CO2. Look up Global Warming Potential.

But methane is much more powerful as a greenhouse gas. According to my estimates, a cow is as bad for global warming as a mack truck.

Have you seen the new BP ROV video page
They have live thumbnails of all the ROV cams


you wouldn't want to open that page if you're on dialup

actually I watch on - similar layout plus some additional ROVs (Inspiration and Challenger) but you can select which ones you want to view also has the live feed to the hearings

Sen. Landrieu just told the commission that Salazar told her about the new moratorium an hour ago, but here's the only public report I'm seeing on it yet:

WASHINGTON July 12 (Reuters) - The U.S. Interior Department will issue a new offshore drilling moratorium on Monday that will end Nov. 30 or sooner, said a government source familiar with the new drilling plan.

The White House said the new drilling moratorium will come out later on Monday. Unlike the initial moratorium, which was blocked by a federal court, the new one has a specific end date.

The moratorium could end sooner than Nov. 30 if Interior Secretary Ken Salazar determines that deepwater drilling can be carried out safely.

Under the new moratorium, drilling in shallow waters would be allowed to continue as is the case now if oil companies meet new safety and environmental requirements and deepwater oil production would also be allowed to continue.

The Interior Department will be "open to modifying" the new exploratory drilling suspensions if the oil industry can show it can operate safely in deep waters, the source said. (Reporting by Tom Doggett and Richard Cowan)

The AP: "The new moratorium will last through Nov. 30. Unlike the last moratorium, which applied to waters of more than 500 feet, the new one applies to any deepwater floating facility with drilling activities."

Sen. Landrieu just read from Interior's statement she'd been given, but did so so quickly, I didn't catch it well (no transcriber here). As a surprise to the commission, apparently it gives them some responsibility to shorten the time-span, if possible. (Salazarity strikes again.)

lotus -- read the AP but still a little unclear: so water depth isn't the issue...just no drilling from a "deepwater floating facility". So if I want to drill a well in 150' of water on the shelf with a floater (which I've done a number of times) then I can't drill if the moritorium holds. But I can drill the same well with a jackup rig that would have the same potential as a blow as the floater would. Color me confused. Perhaps we need some more details.

Color me confused

It is a government regulation, so the purpose is to confuse you.

"The Interior Department will be "open to modifying" the new exploratory drilling suspensions if the oil industry can show it can operate safely in deep waters, the source said."

The Oil/Gas industry drilled safely/cleanly in the Gulf for 60+ years and 30k+ wells, pre Pelosi/Reid/Obama....
What more proof can they give?
The American people trusted for 3+ years that Pelosi/Reid/Obama Dem congress was regulating US driling companies/equipment/procedures to protect American waters... These Dems expanded drilling up to right before the accident... what gives anyone reason to think these same people can judge future safety?
This is as dumb as letting Franks/Dodd, whose financial/banking system collapsed in 2008 with no warning, rewrite all financial/banking regulations.... LOL


You simply cannot blame BP's disaster on the Pelosi/Reid/Obama Administration, esp on this TOD crowd. This is because more than a high majority of the people here know the objectively, provable facts, despite your intractable belief in your point of view.

If you want to blame Obama for this, then you have to blame your much revered former Hastert/Frist/Lott Bush and Cheney Administration for 9/11.

The President's commission to find the cause of the BP blowout is composed of seven anti offshore drilling people, and none with knowledge of the offshore oil industry.

The new Department of Interior moratorium to stop drilling in over 500' of water depth shows the federal government's anti offshore drilling position.

Offshore oil exploration/production can and will be done safely, hopefully not all overseas.

I am confused.

If the "top kill" effort was stopped due to high pressures in the well that were interpreted as dangerous, what has changed that is allowing them to try to shut the well with a new set of rams they are mounting on the new riser?

I thought the whole point has been to NOT increase the pressures in the BOP/well.

Other than "top kill" which was reported to be stopped due to pressure concerns, BP has used all low BOP pressure methods - various siphon systems.

If they now say they could have always capped the well...

They seem to be vascilating from low risk to high risk to low risk to high risk again.

AFAIK, the 'Top Kill' was stopped because they had pumped a sh*t load of mud in, and too much escaped out of the top to kill the well....

now that there is a valve and a lot more instrumentation, so I guess they can pump mud knowing 100% will at least start down the bore, and they can slowly shut off the flow and monitor resulting well pressures/volumes...
Things are looking up?

Apologies if this has been asked and answered before, I could not find any posting about it. What is Enterprise ROV2 showing and why is it important? It looks like old equipment/cap of some sort with a DP coming through it.

Thanks for the clarification...

balance, it's showing the now clean underside of the LMRP that was over the old top hat. They've finally gotten rid of the accumulated gunk that had accumulated on it from the flow from below and, presumably, now will be able to begin to dis-assemble it and the piping supporting it.

sunnnv posted a great explanation yesterday of why it had to be cleaned off.

picture of what it looked like before cleaning ...

Thanks rainy! Not knowing what I was looking at was driving me crazy!

Here's the revised moratorium (29-page pdf), and NYT's story on it. Nut graf:

"The revised moratorium would allow some drilling rigs to resume operating under certain conditions. To qualify, the rig’s owners must prove that they have adequate plans in place to quickly shut down an out-of-control well, that the blowout preventers atop the wells it drills have passed rigorous new tests, and that sufficient cleanup resources are on hand in case of a spill. Industry officials said it would be difficult to meet those conditions quickly and that the restrictions would threaten the jobs of thousands of rig workers."

The revised moratorium would allow some drilling rigs to resume operating under certain conditions. To qualify, the rig’s owners must prove that they have adequate plans in place to quickly shut down an out-of-control well, that the blowout preventers atop the wells it drills have passed rigorous new tests, and that sufficient cleanup resources are on hand in case of a spill.

That would seem to meet Judge Feldman's standards and address his criticisms. But if it is an impossible standard to meet, possibly not. It does not sound like it, though if the operators said it would take time, that implies it can be done.

Industry officials said it would be difficult to meet those conditions quickly and that the restrictions would threaten the jobs of thousands of rig workers."

That does not sound like a very persuasive position when weighed against the risks of a second spill, although I also do not doubt it is at least partially true. How long are we talking to comply I wonder? Only a few deepwater rigs do not already have dual shear BOPs, mostly owned by BP i think.

"Only a few deepwater rigs do not already have dual shear BOPs, mostly owned by BP i think."

syncro.... LOL....
I remember the reagan quote:
It's not what he doesn't know that bothers me, it's what he 'knows' that ain't so...

AFAK, BP Doesn't own any rigs; BP certianly didn't own the failed DeepWater rig; TransOcean owned/maintained/operated both the failed rig, the crew, and the failed BOP.

And the majority of Gulf BOPs have only a single shear BOP,which is standard...

Why not put down your pitchfork and torch, and reconsider being in the Obama/MSM created/manipulated BP lynch mob...

Yes, i saw that after it went out. I meant leased. And you are wrong, all but 3 or 4 of the 33 deepwater rigs out there already have dual-shear BOPs. Here i found this on transocean's rigs:

At the time Transocean acquired the Deepwater Horizon in 2001, it was only equipped with one blind shear ram. At this time Transocean equipped a majority of its rigs with blowout preventers able to hold two rams. Neither BP nor Transocean attempted to fit the Deepwater Horizon with a an additional blind shear ram, despite Transocean's assertion that 11 of its 14 rigs stationed in the gulf have two blind shear rams. All other BP rigs under contract are also outfitted with two blind shear rams.

This version makes sense. Of course, they never needed a Moratorium in the first place to do it - all they have to do is withhold drilling permit until they are satisfied the operator can and will do what they are required to do - with no arbitrary time frame attached.

They just took the dispersant wand out of the transition spool. Perhaps they are FINALLY going to put the capping BOP on.

BOA Deep C Rov 1.... here we go...

It's ON!!!!!!

Soft dock not hard dock yet. SsNAFU on a hoist line snagging the ROV. Some of us are going blue.


EDIT: Love the sticker.

thanks for drawing my attention to the sticker ...

THINK twice,
Act once!!

Nice jab at BP! LOL

and underneath that, in smaller lettering...


I am wondering if we have a problem. Hydraulic leak spotted and I see no latch movement. Isn't something supposed to be coming out the top?


Somebody at the NYT noticed the sticker too.. or is reading here.

On Monday evening, video from the seafloor showed the cap being lowered onto a connector pipe that had been installed the day before. The cap’s latching mechanism had a sticker on the side that read, “THINK twice, act once!!”

Tests to determine if Cap will Halt Oil

From the same article -

If the tests on the well show the pressure rising and holding — an indication that the well is intact, with no significant damage to the casing pipe that runs the length of the well bore to 13,000 feet below the sea floor — BP, working with government scientists, could decide to leave the valves closed, effectively shutting off the well like a cap on a soda bottle.

“The best-case scenario is that pressures rise to the point we anticipate they would,” Mr. Suttles said at a briefing. “We’d likely be able to keep the well shut in.”

On the other hand, the tests could show pressures that are lower than expected, Mr. Suttles said, an indication that the well is damaged. That could mean that oil and gas are leaking into the surrounding rock.

In that case, keeping the cap closed could damage the well further. The valves would have to be reopened, he said, and oil would start escaping from the well again, although much of it, and perhaps eventually all, would be funneled through pipes to surface ships.

Is it prudent of BP to risk a subterranean blowout by attempting to shut the well in at the top? I understand they are only a few weeks away from completion of a relief well and subsequent bottom kill, so it seems to me a safer course would be to channel as much of the flow as possible to ships on the surface, until the bottom kill stops the flow.

Not wanting to be viewed as overly eristical I have a potentionally provacative question regarding the go/no-go parameters BP uses when defining the risks they are willing to take. I am interested in what goes into deciding how to proceed versus the risks associated with the different options available.

For example, Fox recently reported an oil executive's wife was injured with a boxed chocolate bomb. Targeting her may have absolutely nothing to do the oil industry, however, would a report like this shade the way BP views the risks associated with closing the well?

If the leaders at BP, or whoever, saw the news report and if it ultimately did make them view risk differently, perhaps sensing a rising anger in the populace, would BP more likely:

1. Go slower and more deliberately making sure nothing possibly could make matters worse ... getting it right the first (next) time?

2. Speed things up taking more risks such as trying to close well too soon leading to subsea blowouts or doing something with marginal conitions?

3. Have no bearing whatsoever since BP has one best course of action at this point and it is going to make those choices regardless?

4. other ideas?


At 6:30 EDT, Skandi #2 and OI #2 are showing the new cap with a covey of ROVs around it, so maybe something is about to happen.

watching enterprise rov 1 , think they need a little lube, and its looking a bit discouraged.

Boa Deep C Rov 1 is where it's at... they are a little low to the target rigth now, but the crane is working. Almost like watching very exiting paint dry...I mean after watching 6 hours of bolts being unscrewed I hope my wife is cooking tonight!

Don't scratch that new paint job!!!

Discovery Inspiration ROV 1
Ocean Intervention ROV 2
Boa C ROV 1

Showtime, now where's that popcorn?


EDIT: Olympic Challenger ROV 1 may be getting in on the act as well. Man, that looks so spooky, just like in the movies :)

News at 11. Wverything looks good. I can't see any flow out the top. Is it all going topside?

News reports coming in that cap is in place with no visible oil flow. Waiting for official word. If so, a huge pat on the back for all those folks working day and night to bring this under control. Cautiously optimistic. And my coninued gratitude for this site and the folks supporting it.

Video of the placement of the cap via Naula on #theoildrum. Note the fine mutual support among the three ROVs.

Thanks rainy.

Sorry, I posted three stills upthread in wrong place.


curious if anyone has a link other than the BP site to watch the ROVs....I think bandwidth considerations are keeping my machines from loading them and would like to watch. thanks in advance

Then select the interesting ones


this page refreshes every 60 seconds... if you want to watch one live, click on its thumbnail.

It's all over. The cap is on. Just can't see if they are fowing out of the top of the cap or if it is going up to the surface. BP site is still the best.

You can get stills, updated every minute, here:

Then you can load most of the interesting ones here:

My bandwidth is good for 3 feeds max.

here as well for that Active image wall of the rovs (i think its picking up the same feed as data plan9) Media player is a bandwidth hog almost as bad as flash

I'm confused, first, the seal between the pipe w/the bolts and the white cap didn't look like a closed seal, it seems like it's just resting, which i wasn't expecting. And two, where the heck is the oil going right now?

Anyone understand what's happening?

Also, was I seeing things or did they accidentally drop the cap on top of the pipe right before they slid it on? :O

The slip-over seal allows for a fast disconnect if needed.

Per Kent Wells video - 7/9 ceiling cap overview - the riser pipe above it is perforated for a certain length - the flow should be exiting there. I haven't seen a good shot of that yet.

I know it takes time to start producing to the surface ships, but is there a reason to try shutting in the well before starting production? (where's the spell check on this thing)

The mule shoe (white bell on bottom) is a guide for the connector .. serious when I say the connector itself looks like the quick-connects you use on hoses .. but hydraulically operated .. can't exactly reach down and pull the sleeve. So it latches on to the transition spool male part of connector.

There are red stripes on the cap that appear to be supposed to match a red stripe on the spool. It's off by a few inches. I hope that doesn't matter.

An account of working a blow out in the 80s.
I worked as a wellsite geologist for about ten years, mostly on land rigs in Alberta, I have been offshore twice.
The wellsite culture here in the 80s was different than now. It was pretty common to have very young crews, often farm kids, and students, picking up summer work.
When I was getting started, the summer of my second year in University, I was very young too, and looked all of 17 ( that’s an important point in this story actually) . But, I had worked on 5 or so wells the previous summer; and a few that summer too, so I had a bit of experience, and had been on wells fighting lost circulation, so that was good experience too.
I was sent out on a 2000 meter exploration well. The small oil company was really cheap, and sent me out at the last moment hoping to shave a day off their day rate.
I got out on location @ 4:30pm. I went over to my trailer to unload my gear, and to my total amazement, the crew had actually been collecting samples, and I had a heap of nicely labeled sample bags waiting for me. Thinking, shit, that’s really unusual, and that these could be likely “dog housed”, so that could make my job impossible too.
I picked up the sample bag off the top of the heap; it was labeled 1710m; thinking, shit these guys are almost at TD. Man, I have a huge amount of work to get through this. Dinner can wait. I’d better see what’s up. I popped that baby under the microscope, mud and all, and there was this text book example of a beautiful vuggy limestone, nicely oil stained too. Yep, presto, no question, these guys have themselves a well.
Thinking, okay, this could be big trouble too. I head straight over to the drill floor, and talk to the driller. I sound a bit panicked. I tell the driller I am his geologist, and that he is in a really porous limestone, and to watch his tanks since he could start losing mud. At this time, I’ve been on location all of ten minutes; the driller has no clue as to who I am, and he just literally kinda blinks at me, doesn’t say a word, and turns around, and gets back to drilling.
I think he thinks that I am so young looking, that I should not be up on a drill floor; he’s not going to take me seriously.
Okay, I head over to the tanks, talk to the mud man, I tell him the same thing, watch your tanks, get lost circ material ready. The mud man understood what I was saying, but he takes his orders from the driller, not me.
Next, I head over to the drilling super’s trailer. He’s the next guy that needs to know. I look back at the rig, and see them drill down the last 3 meters of the kelly in about 5 seconds; thinking, shit is that stuff soft. And the crew starts making the connection. It’s clear to me that the driller has decided to not take my warning seriously.
Well, that connection was never completed, they lost their mud volume, and the well blew out. Some mud when flying into the derrick; but not too much, and then this very loud whistling noise started as an amazing amount of gas shot up from the well, completely engulfing the rig in seconds. Total elapsed time from warning to blowout, maybe ~4 minutes. I was half way between the rig, and the drilling man’s trailer. The crew’s reaction was to RUN. The entire crew, everyone, ran. The derrick hand was gone too. I guess in the face of instant incineration, that is a pretty natural reaction.
I was looking back at the rig, and a huge cloud of gas, and thinking one spark, and we are dead. I am just amazed at the volume flowing from the well; truly unbelievable. A few seconds later, the drilling super, blasts out of his trailer door, and makes a bee-line for the remote BOP panel. He pulls the shear rams, and shit, wouldn’t you know it…. they worked perfectly. I don’t know if he figured out that there was open drill pipe hanging in the rotary table; or if he tried the other rams too.
The flow was diverted out to the flare line. I was still standing there, just looking at all of this, and as the gas cloud cleared, the rig was dripping in condensate; like it had been rained on. Still, no ignition.
This crusty older drill super comes back over to the trailer, and yells as loud as he can ( to get above the sound of the gas whistle) : who the fuck are you?
I scream back to him that I am his geologist; but decide there is no point in telling him about the beautiful vuggy limestone at the bottom of the well.
The gas was shot out the flare line for at least a couple of hours before being ignited. The crew came back, no one was injured, and the derrick man tells about how he went down the line.
So, the lessons learned that day for me were:
1) Blowouts can happen really, really fast.
2) The crew’s response was purely survival, above procedure.
3) That experienced drilling super saved the day.
4) BOPs that work, are really, really important.
5) Ignition points would be very, very bad.
6) Don’t be cheap, and get your geologist out on location early

Wow, thanks for the story. Hope some people listen.

crustypg ~

That is an amazing story. What are your thoughts about the seismic devices they've installed? I'm also interested in knowing what you think the possible risks are in tapping the WW with the new RW's. IF the drill casing and disks are you see any possibility of migration into the existing well bore?

Thanks for the story. Those old guys can sure be cranky but they are stand-up when you need 'em.

Has anyone noticed the ROV looking at the perforations in the pipe?? How come the oil is not flowing out of them? You can see it inside the pipe, but it is not escaping???

ceeport over on the irc #theoildrum snapped a photo of O&G coming out a short while ago. That paint won't stay white for long. I assume there must be dams above the openings in the pipe, since I don't think Discoverer Inspiration is set up to deal with any flow.

Yeah, I saw this farther up....but there were a few vents lower that were not flowing.....odd?

not necessarily odd ... most likely the flow went straight up the pipe until it hit some kind of obstructing dam and then began going out the vents from the top down. No "empty" lower vents are visible now on the Skandi rov2.

Makes sense! Thanks for the reply.

Skandi ROV 2 shows oil coming out at 1932 Houston daylight savings time.

Are these occasional bubble bursts expected?

Now there's a cloud of green liquid near the UNLATCH/LATCH zone...

what's on skandi rov 2? a bleed-off?