Inspection of Visible Sheen in the Gulf Around BP’s Deepwater Horizon Turns Up No Oil?

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Don’t believe everything you see on Teevee

By Glynn Wilson

No sources of leaking oil have been identified in the ongoing investigation of a visible sheen around BP’s Deepwater Horizon platform wreckage in the Gulf of Mexico.

According to a release just out from RestoreTheGulf.gov, remote operated vehicles investigating the recurring sheen near the MC 252 wellhead concluded Saturday after inspecting the sunken platform and the surrounding area. An unidentified substance inconsistent with oil was seen emitting from several areas of the rig wreckage, the report says. Samples were collected for further lab analysis.

“No apparent source of the surface sheen has been discovered by this effort,” said Capt. Duke Walker, Federal On-Scene Coordinator for Deepwater Horizon. “Next steps are being considered as we await the lab results of the surface and subsurface samples and more detailed analysis of the video shot during the mission.”

Out of an abundance of caution, the Macondo wellhead was also observed and, “as expected,” he said, “was found to be secure.”

The well was “closed off and cemented” on September 19, 2010.

Satellite surveillance continues to monitor the sheen, he said, “while future steps are being considered.”

The real time ROV operations were observed remotely by the Coast Guard, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, BP, Transocean and state on‐scene coordinators from Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida. Additionally, the Coast Guard had observers onboard the Olympic Triton which launched and controlled the ROVs during the operation.

Video of the ROV inspections are now posted at here and will be posted on the RestoreTheGulf.Gov Website.

“The Gulf Coast Incident Management Team remains committed to the continued cleanup of the Gulf Coast and all shorelines affected as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion,” the release says and is “determined to continue response activities to remove all oil where it is technologically feasible, environmentally beneficial and safe for workers to perform recovery operations.”

The public is reminded to contact the National Response Center at 1-800-424-8802 to report all pollution incidents or the Coast Guard 8th District command center at 504-589-6225 in the event of any marine emergencies.

© 2012, Glynn Wilson. All rights reserved.

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