Document: BP didn’t plan for major oil spill

By CAIN BURDEAU and HOLBROOK MOHR, Associated Press Writers Cain Burdeau And Holbrook Mohr, Associated Press Writers
Sat May 1, 2:38 am ET

MOUTH OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER – British Petroleum once downplayed the possibility of a catastrophic accident at an offshore rig that exploded, causing the worst U.S. oil spill in decades along the Gulf Coast and endangering shoreline habitat.

In its 2009 exploration plan and environmental impact analysis for the well, BP suggested it was unlikely, or virtually impossible, for an accident to occur that would lead to a giant crude oil spill and serious damage to beaches, fish and mammals.

At least 1.6 million gallons of oil have spilled so far since the April 20 explosion that killed 11 workers, according to Coast Guard estimates. One expert said Friday that the volume of oil leaking from the well nearly 5,000 feet below the surface could actually be much higher, and that even more may escape if the drilling equipment continues to erode.

“The sort of occurrence that we’ve seen on the Deepwater Horizon is clearly unprecedented,” BP spokesman David Nicholas told The Associated Press on Friday. “It’s something that we have not experienced before … a blowout at this depth.”

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2 Responses to “Document: BP didn’t plan for major oil spill”

  1. Suzan Says:

    Isn’t that special!

  2. Willow Arune Says:

    Unbelievable. To drill so close to a major population area and wetlands without knowing if things went wrong, you could stop them. My understanding is that they do not known how to “plug the leak” because they drilled so deeply. Well, “You picked a fine time to tell me, BP”. And as Halliburton is in the mix, the legal ramifications (subject to the already stacked deck of the US Supreme Court) should prove interesting. And they want to “Drill, Baby, drill”?? I note that Palin has not paused but rather encouraged more drilling in her recent blog. And McCain created that … person? McCain seems to have tacked and jibbed on every current issue, from immigration to banking.

    The answer, of course, is to “Build,Baby, build”. Use the closed factories to built wind turbines in hundreds, thousands, and place them where possible (and we have lots of space). Use more natural gas, of which the US and Canada have lots. Convert cars to use NG until better technology can be developed. And unhappily, more dams and more atomic energy facilities. Use oil to lubricate, not to power.

    Check out Brazil’s changes since the Carter administration gas crisis. They have converted all cars to use gas produced from sugar cane and have fields of the stuff growing. They used to import oil. Now they do not. They used what they had to make what they needed. Okay, so they have messed up the rain forest, but at least they have stopped importing oil!

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