Gulf of Mexico worst case scenario
So what exactly happens in the Gulf if BP can't plug the hole? Well, the first thing is to note, just as in the 1979 Anchorage spill, nothing will plug this until the relief well is drilled...
...but what if the relief well doesn't work, what if BP have actually ruptured the Gulf floor?
Deepwater Horizon: The Worst-Case Scenario
So far, up to 3.6 million barrels of oil have spilled into the Gulf. The size of the Macondo oilfield has been estimated as being anywhere from 25 to 100 million barrels. It is unclear how much of that oil-in-place would escape upward into Gulf waters if its flow remained completely unchecked, but it is safe to assume that at least half, and probably a much greater proportion, would eventually drain upward. That means many times as much oil would enter the Gulf waters as has done so until now.
This is BP Apologist Tony Hayward telling graduates last year that BP had too many people trying to save the planet and as such he would focus on profits...
...your problem was too many people trying to save the planet? Well that ain't your problem any longer Tony, you've done plenty to damage the planet forever.
For the economies of coastal states, a worst-case leakage scenario would be utterly devastating. Not only the fishing industry, but the oil industry as well would be fatally crippled, due to the disruption of operations at refineries. Shipping via the Mississippi River, which handles 60 percent of all U.S. grain exports, could be imperiled, since the Port of South Louisiana, the largest bulk cargo port in the world, might have to be closed if ships are unable to operate in oil-drenched waters. Unemployment in the region would soar and economic refugees would scatter in all directions.
The knock on effect of BP rupturing the sea floor of the Gulf will have a massive impact on the ecology, economy and habitability of the entire region leading to environmental refugees and an oil industry wracked by a vast increase in insurance premiums causing the price to skyrocket.
So this is all happening right when the Minister for Mordor and Masochism, Gerry Brownlee greenlighted our own deep sea drilling...
East coast oil exploration approved
Energy Minister Gerry Brownlee has announced that one of the world's largest oil companies, Petrobras, has been awarded exploration rights for oil and gas in the previously unexplored Raukumara Basin on the east coast of the North Island.
...so will we like Canada demand relief wells dug in the same season? Of course not! Gerry tells us the voluntary code of 'Best Practice' will look after us. Really? A voluntary 'Best Practice' code is all that Gerry will implement? Gerry's press secretary knows 'Best Practice' unfortunately has the same initials as BP right?
If Gerry's vision of a water tight voluntary code that will protect us from oil spills and will be so carefully scrutinized that all the I's are dotted and all the T's crossed is so certain, then why the fuck weren't local Iwi even consulted over the Petrobras contract?
Maori ignored as Patrobras signed up
Labour's Maori affairs spokesperson is attacking the issue of a licence to Brazilian company to prospect for oil off the North Island East Coast. Parekura Horomia says energy minister Gerry Brownlee failed to consult Maori before signing over the Raukumara Basin to Petrobras International.
...so Gerry's eagle like vision to assure us this drilling deal will be safe couldn't even manage to remember to talk to local Maori about this arrangement?
A voluntary 'Best Practice' code and a deal that couldn't even remember to talk to local Maori are a sign that Gerry isn't protecting our interests at all and by refusing to even entertain a relief well drill clause into these deals to force the oil company to drill a relief well first suggests that Gerry is once again missing the point.
It's a point the residents of the Gulf are seeing bloom toxic before their eyes.