An explosion that occurred on the BP ship Deepwater Horizion …
By Dr. Joseph S. Maresca
Sky Truth now estimates that 11 million gallons of oil is in the slick which is approaching land right now in the GULF region. If true, the 4-20-2010 oil spill would be the largest in our history. Sky Truth's estimates are from NASA and private company data.
Dr. Ian MacDonald of FSU just produced spill-sized estimates based on the United States Coast Guard aerial overflight map on 4-28-10 of 9mm gallons floating on the Gulf. A NASA/MODIS satellite image shows oil covering 2256 miles.
The catastrophe becomes infinitely worse once the oil reaches shore. Once there is a spill--all options are bad and igniting the oil can be the least damaging of the worst options. Ecological damage to fisheries, wildlife and natural wildlife refuges is perhaps the greatest concern. Sea turtles, whales and marine mammals are exposed to oil when they come to the surface to breathe. When bird feathers are covered with oil, animals have no way of regulating body temperature and die of hypothermia. The danger here is that oil will permeate the barrier islands of the Delta region and estuaries which are biologically rich.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAH) has the responsibility to protect, preserve, manage and restore the United States Coastal resources and ecosystems along 96,000 miles of the United States Shoreline. The EPA has statutory authority under the Clean Water Act Par 311 (1973) and the Oil Pollution Act(1990).
Even under optimal conditions, 10-20% of oil can be recovered. A host of patent art is available for oil cleanup purposes. Although, an oil slick approaching the size of Delaware may be beyond any known scientific capability to contain the catastrophe in practice. There are inventions which may be able to clean up very specific areas of the spill which undermine life along the coastline. i.e.
United States Patent 5254266 describes an oil spill cleanup craft and method using catamaran with exceptional stability. This is a self-contained oil spill cleanup craft and method which operates well in both rough and calm seas, is rapidly deployed, which provides high flow rate continuous separation and processing of recovered oil and water mixtures, and outputs water which is substantially free of oil and oil which is substantially free of water and other contaminants and, as such, refinery ready without further processing. The craft of the present invention can be used, for example, to clean up light and medium weight crude oil, lubricating oil, or diesel fuel that is floating on the surfaces of either fresh or salt water.
In accordance with an exemplary embodiment of the present invention, a small waterplane area twin hull boat having respective pontoons attached to the base of each hull is equipped with a scoop for recovering oil and water, separation and processing equipment for separating and purifying the recovered oil and water, high volume pumps for transferring the oil and water from the scoop to the separation and processing equipment, and storage elements for storing refinery grade oil and dry sludge.
Joseph S. Maresca Ph.D., CPA, CISA, MBA: His significant writings include over 10 copyrights in the name of the author (Joseph S. Maresca) and a patent in the earthquake sciences. He holds membership in the prestigious Delta Mu Delta National Honor Society and Sigma Beta Delta International Honor Society. In addition, he reviews many books for Basil & Spice.
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