News / USA

US Scientists: Massive Oil Spill Enters Gulf of Mexico Current

Predicted oil slick trajectory map, 19 May 2010
Predicted oil slick trajectory map, 19 May 2010

U.S. scientists said Wednesday that the oil spill from a massive leak underwater leak in the Gulf of Mexico has entered a current that flows past Florida and several other U.S. states.  Marine experts are concerned the current could enable the oil leak to have a broader impact.

U.S. Government scientists confirmed that a light oil sheen has entered the Loop Current that flows north from the Caribbean Sea and east around the Florida peninsula.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, said planes first spotted the sheen on Tuesday.  Scientists say is it uncertain that oil in the Loop Current will reach Florida, adding it would take more than a week to do so.

But NOAA science coordinator Charlie Henry says the danger to the state's environment will be diminished.

"That oil is going to move slowly with the Loop Current," said Charlie Henry. "And we expect most of that to dissipate or degrade before it would come close to threatening the south Florida area."

So far, scientists have found no traces of the oil spill in Florida.  They say tests confirmed that tar balls found on south Florida beaches on Tuesday were not from the BP leak.

University researchers and independent groups also have been tracking the sheen, amid concerns that the Loop Current could transport oil for hundreds of kilometers.  The oil could ruin beaches and marine habitats in several U.S. states and Caribbean nations.

In Havana, U.S. and Cuban officials met to discuss how to respond to the leak that is releasing an estimated 5,000 barrels of oil a day.  The Loop Current flows between Florida and Cuba.

After several failed efforts, the BP oil company is deploying more equipment to the site of the disaster to plug the leak.  The latest attempt involves placing a tube into the well, and pumping in mud and cement to stop the flow of oil.

U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Mary Landry, who is overseeing the response, says everyone is optimistic that the technique known as "top kill" will be successful.

"We absolutely are holding out hope that top kill works," said Admiral Landry. "Everybody is very anxious to see success with this intervention."

BP says it has some 20,000 people working to stop the leak and clean up the oil that has flowed into the Gulf of Mexico.  Teams continue to spray chemical dispersants and burn oil on the water's surface to minimize the impact of the spill.   

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

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.
Ugandan Doctors Aid Victims of Sudan's Civil Wari
X
Adam Bailes
December 22, 2014 3:45 PM
In Sudan's state of South Kordofan, the number of amputees as result of civil war is in the thousands, but few have access to sufficient medical help. Adam Bailes recently visited the area and says a small team of Ugandan doctors has been providing remote help, producing new prosthetic limbs for those in need.
Video

Video Ugandan Doctors Aid Victims of Sudan's Civil War

In Sudan's state of South Kordofan, the number of amputees as result of civil war is in the thousands, but few have access to sufficient medical help. Adam Bailes recently visited the area and says a small team of Ugandan doctors has been providing remote help, producing new prosthetic limbs for those in need.
Video

Video Jane Monheit Christmas Special

Chanteuse Jane Monheit sings the holiday classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and explains why it’s her favorite song of the season.
Video

Video Calm Amid Fear in Daily Life in S. Sudan’s Town of Bentiu

Six months ago, Bentiu was a ghost town. The capital of northern Unity State, near South Sudan’s important oil fields, had changed hands several times in fighting between government forces and rebels. Calm returned in November and since then, residents of Bentiu have been trying to regain some sense of normalcy. Bentiu’s market has reopened there are plans to start school again. But fears of new attacks hang heavy, as Benno Muchler reports from Bentiu.
Video

Video US Business Groups Press for Greater Access to Cuba

President Barack Obama's decision to do all he can to ease restrictions on U.S. trade, travel and financial activities with Cuba has drawn criticism from some conservatives and Republicans. People who bring tourists to the island and farmers who want to sell more food to Cuba, however, think they can do a lot more business with Cuba. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.

All About America

AppleAndroid