Matthew's Feed
May 22, 2010

BP swamped by criticism; spilled oil keeps coming

, May 21 (Reuters) – Anger, skepticism
and accusations of lying washed over energy giant BP Plc on
Friday as it desperately tried to contain a month-old seabed
well leak billowing crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

U.S. lawmakers and scientists have accused BP <BP.L> <BP.N>
of trying to conceal what many believe is already the worst
U.S. oil spill, eclipsing the 1989 Exxon Valdez accident in
Alaska. It represents a potential environmental and economic
catastrophe for the U.S. Gulf coast.

May 22, 2010

BP swamped by criticism

HOUSTON/VENICE, Louisiana (Reuters) – Anger, skepticism and accusations of lying washed over energy giant BP Plc on Friday as it desperately pursued efforts to contain a month-old seabed well leak billowing crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

U.S. lawmakers and scientists have accused BP of trying to conceal what many believe is already the worst U.S. oil spill, eclipsing the 1989 Exxon Valdez accident in Alaska. It represents a potentially environmental and economic catastrophe for the U.S. Gulf coast.

May 21, 2010

Louisiana fears oil onshore is just the start

PASS A LOUTRE, Louisiana (Reuters) – The oil slick that has started sloshing through marsh grass at the southern tip of the Mississippi Delta gives coastal Louisiana a glimpse of what it fears may be its future.

In the last few days, acres of oil have penetrated low-lying islands at the point where the river rolls into the sea, forming a dark red band at the bottom of the roseau cane.

May 21, 2010

Oil fouls Louisiana, BP scrambles to contain spill

BLIND BAY, La, May 21 (Reuters) – Energy giant BP, accused
by the U.S. government of failing to share information in a
timely fashion about the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, was forging
ahead on Friday with efforts to contain the gushing crude.

The pressure to act is huge. TV images of oil sloshing into
Louisiana’s marshes has underscored the gravity of the
situation and raised public concern about the catastrophe,
keeping it high up on the political agenda in Washington.

May 21, 2010

BP accused of cover-up

/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. government Thursday accused energy giant BP of falling short in the information it has provided about the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, in a clear sign of Washington’s growing frustration with BP’s handling of the spiraling environmental disaster.

“In responding to this oil spill, it is critical that all actions be conducted in a transparent manner, with all data and information related to the spill readily available to the United States government and the American people,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson said in a letter.

May 20, 2010

BP, accused of cover-up, says captures more oil

/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. government on Thursday accused energy giant BP of falling short in the information it has provided about the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, in a clear sign of Washington’s growing frustration with BP’s handling of the spiralling environmental disaster.

“In responding to this oil spill, it is critical that all actions be conducted in a transparent manner, with all data and information related to the spill readily available to the United States government and the American people,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson said in a letter.

May 20, 2010

U.S. to check BP spill size, heavy oil comes ashore

By Matthew Bigg

VENICE, La. (Reuters) – The U.S. government will independently verify how much oil has leaked into the Gulf of Mexico from a ruptured undersea well owned by BP, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said on Thursday.

“We’re not depending on what BP is telling us,” Salazar said on CNN in one of a series of television appearances to address the ecological disaster unfolding in the Gulf Coast.

May 20, 2010

Louisiana shore sees heavy oil as BP prepares plug

, May 20 (Reuters) – Heavy oil from the Gulf of Mexico spill threatened Louisiana marshlands on Thursday after washing ashore for the first time since a BP-operated rig exploded a month ago, sparking ecological disaster.

Calling it a "day that we have all been fearing," Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal said on Wednesday that heavy oil — not simply tar balls or sheen — had entered the state’s prized wetlands.

"It’s already here but we know more is coming," he said.

The marshes are the nurseries for shrimp, oysters, crabs and fish that make Louisiana the leading producer of commercial seafood in the continental United States. A large no-fishing zone in Gulf waters seen as affected by the spill has been imposed. [ID:nN18155760]

Energy giant BP Plc <BP.L> scrambled to contain crude from the gushing undersea well, which ruptured after an April 20 explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig that killed 11 workers.

The company said it is now siphoning about 3,000 barrels (126,000 gallons/477,000 liters) a day of oil, from what it has estimated was a 5,000 barrels (210,000 gallons/795,000 liters) a day gusher.

The company said it could begin injecting mud into the well as early as Sunday in a bid to permanently plug the leak.

BP shares closed down nearly 2 percent in London on Wednesday, extending recent steep losses. <^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

TAKE A LOOK on the spill [ID:nSPILL]

INSIDER TV: link.reuters.com/wuw64k

Graphic: link.reuters.com/ken64k

Breakingviews column [ID:nLDE64C1D1] ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^>

Adding another name to the group of companies connected to the doomed rig, Schlumberger Ltd <SLB.N> said it had a crew on the Deepwater Horizon that departed only hours before the explosion and fire that engulfed it. [ID:nN19270822]

The world’s largest oilfield services company had not previously revealed its work on the Horizon.

FALL-OUT INCREASES

The discovery of heavy oil in marshlands at the southern tip of Louisiana’s peninsula showed that authorities lacked the capacity to track undersea oil effectively, marine conservation biologist Rick Steiner said.

It also called into question a containment effort that focused on oil on the surface of the Gulf, Steiner said.

"I am very confident that a lot of the oil that has come out has not surfaced yet and the government can’t track subsurface plumes," said Steiner, a retired professor at the University of Alaska who has just spent a week on the Gulf coast.

Meanwhile, the U.S. government’s top weather forecaster said a small portion of light sheen from the giant oil slick had entered the powerful ocean flow known as the Loop Current, which could carry the oil down to the Florida Keys, Cuba and up the U.S. East Coast.

Wildlife and environmental groups accused BP of holding back information on the real size and impact of the growing slick, and urged President Barack Obama to order a more direct federal government role in the spill response.

Obama plans to create a commission to investigate the cause of the spill, evaluate industry practices and study government oversight.

Fall-out in Washington increased. The U.S. Interior Department said on Wednesday its embattled Minerals Management Service will be broken up into three separate divisions, as part of an effort to restructure the way the department handles offshore energy production. [ID:nN19223644]

Top Democrats in the U.S. Senate urged Obama to order immediate, enhanced inspections of all offshore oil rigs and production platforms.

"Until we can ensure the safety of our offshore platforms, our nation’s coastlines will be threatened by the possibility of more man-made catastrophes," the letter said.

(Editing by Philip Barbara)




May 20, 2010

Heavy oil hits Louisiana shore

VENICE, Louisiana (Reuters) – The first heavy oil from a giant Gulf of Mexico spill sloshed ashore in fragile Louisiana marshlands on Wednesday and part of the mess entered a powerful current that could carry it to Florida and beyond.

The developments underscored the gravity of the situation as British energy giant BP Plc raced to capture more crude gushing from a ruptured well a mile beneath the surface. The spill is threatening an ecological and economic disaster along the U.S. Gulf Coast and beyond.

May 20, 2010

Heavy oil hits Louisiana shore, enters sea current

, May 19 (Reuters) – The first heavy oil from a
giant Gulf of Mexico spill sloshed ashore in fragile Louisiana
marshlands on Wednesday and part of the mess entered a powerful
current that could carry it to Florida and beyond.

The developments underscored the gravity of the situation
as British energy giant BP <BP.L> Plc raced to capture more
crude gushing from a ruptured well a mile (1.6 km) beneath the
surface. The spill is threatening an ecological and economic
disaster along the U.S. Gulf Coast and beyond.