The BP Oil Spill

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1.Introduction and Aims
The BP oil spill began on 20 April 2010 in the Gulf of Mexico on the BP-operated Macondo Prospect. On April 20, 2010, 126 workers on the mobile offshore drilling unit Deepwater Horizon were in the process of temporarily closing the exploratory Macondo oil well. That evening, an explosion abroad the drilling unit set off a chain of events that eventually led to the sinking of the Deepwater Horizon. Eleven crewmembers lost their lives and others were seriously injured, as fire engulfed and ultimately destroyed the rig.
It is considered the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry, an estimated 8% to 31% larger in volume than the previously largest, the Ixtoc I oil spill. The flow was stopped on 15 July 2010 and after several failed efforts to contain the flow, the well was declared sealed on 19 September 2010.
1.1. The Facts about the BP Spill Oil
1. Following the explosion and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, a sea-floor oil gusher flowed for 87 days, until it was capped on 15 July 2010. Federal science and engineering teams, citing data that are “the most accurate to date,” estimated that 53,000 barrels of oil a day were pouring from the well just before BP was able to cap it on July 15.
The US Government estimated the total discharge at 4.9 million barrels of oil with plus or minus 10% uncertainty have gushed from BP’s well.
2. According to the satellite images, the spill directly impacted 68,000 square miles (180,000 km2) of ocean, which is comparable to the size of Oklahoma. Also, 16,000 total miles of coastline have been affected, including the coasts of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. By early June 2010, oil had washed up on 125 ...

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