News / USA

    New Gulf Oil Spill Report Levels Most of Blame on BP

    Oil from the damaged Deepwater Horizon oil well lingered off the Mississippi Delta, 04 Jul 2010
    Oil from the damaged Deepwater Horizon oil well lingered off the Mississippi Delta, 04 Jul 2010

    A new report by the U.S. Coast Guard and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management says the British petroleum company BP was "ultimately responsible" for the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history.  The explosion last year aboard the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico spilled nearly five million barrels of oil and killed 11 workers.

    It all breaks down to man and cement.  Both get blamed.  

    Government investigators say the cause of the explosion was a failure in the cement barrier needed to enclose hydrocarbons at the well base. They go on to blame BP, as the operator of the well, for making a series of bad management decisions.  And again, BP along with Transocean, the owner of the well, for not correcting the mistakes.  Another thing: the well was "significantly behind schedule" and $58 million over budget at the time of the explosion.

    For three months, millions of liters of oil spewed into the gulf.  Fouling wildlife.  Beaches.  Marshes.  But, now, on the surface, the ocean looks clean.  

    "Mother Nature is just incredibly resilient," said Ed Overton at Louisiana State University has worked on numerous federal research projects on the spill.

    Tropical Storm Lee last week churned the waters and washed up a few tar balls, But Professor Overton says that is remarkable considering the size of the spill. "We had people talking about decades-to-centuries before the gulf would return to normal.  That's just not the case.  You cannot go into the Gulf of Mexico today and find significant damage to the ecology.  It may be there, but it sure is hard to find," he said.

    His worries still extend offshore, in the deepest of waters.

    "The damage that's to the smallest of creatures -- the little animals we cannot see with the naked eye. We can't see the damage down there so we only have to surmise that there was damage out there," he said.  

    Total damage will not be known until a government lawsuit against BP and other companies is settled. Wednesday's report cited seven violations of federal regulations.

    BP released a statement saying it agrees with the report's "core" conclusion that multiple events and parties lead to the explosion.  Transocean says the report confirms that the cause was failure of cement, not improper maintenance of the blowout preventer.

    The report suggests numerous industry and regulatory changes.  Some, have already been implemented.  But stronger safety measures directly related to the disaster have yet to be passed by Congress.

    You May Like

    Multimedia Obama Calls on Americans to Help the Families of Its War Dead

    In last Memorial Day of his presidency, Obama lays wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery

    The Strife of the Party: Will Trump Permanently Alter Republicans?

    While billionaire mogul's no-holds-barred style, high-energy delivery are what rocketed him to nomination, they also have created rift between party elites and his supporters

    China's Education Reforms Spark Protest

    Beijing is putting a quota system in place to increase the number of students from poor regions attending universities

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora