Friday, June 11, 2010

Don't they know this is a rush?

Energy company BP is bringing additional ships to the Gulf of Mexico to deal with oil that may be leaking at a rate twice as high as previously believed.

Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, the director of the federal response to the Gulf spill, said Friday that oil production boats are currently on their way from the North Sea and elsewhere to help capture oil gushing from the leak.

The ships should all be in place by the first week of July, he said. They will have a capacity to hold 40,000 to 50,000 barrels per day of oil, he said. A government panel said Thursday that the gash in the ocean floor left by the burned-out Deepwater Horizon oil rig may be leaking up to 50,000 barrels per day. U.S. Geological Survey Director Marcia McNutt, who is coordinating the estimates, said the most credible daily flow rate is 20,000 to 40,000 barrels a day.

The oil leak started in April. It's now mid June, and both the oil company and the Obama administration either can't or won't honestly say how much is leaking. Full response teams won't be on the job until July.

How badly are they all doing their jobs?

Thursday was at least the fourth time since the disaster began April 20, when the rig exploded and killed 11 workers, that BP or the government has dramatically raised the estimate of leakage from the site. BP originally said that the leakage was about 1,000 barrels per day.

"We're still trying to refine those numbers," Allen said at a news conference in Washington.

Meanwhile, they are now trying to use the spill as an excuse to pass previously pending legislation that will do nothing to stop the leak.

We should demand they stop and clean up after the leak first.

Then, on the basis of their job performance, we can decide whether to trust them further with energy policy revisions.

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