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NOAA Head: Gulf Oil Biodegrading Quickly

From a dismayed Washington Post:

Oil in gulf is degrading, becoming harder to find, NOAA head says

By Marc Kaufman
Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Oil from the BP blowout is degrading rapidly in the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and becoming increasingly difficult to find on the water surface, the head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Tuesday.

"The light crude oil is biodegrading quickly," NOAA director Jane Lubchenco said during the response team daily briefing. "We know that a significant amount of the oil has dispersed and been biodegraded by naturally occurring bacteria."

Lubchenco said, however, that both the near- and long-term environmental effects of the release of several million barrels of oil remain serious and to some extent unpredictable.

"The sheer volume of oil that’s out there has to mean there are some pretty significant impacts," she said. "What we have yet to determine is the full impact the oil will have not just on the shoreline, not just on wildlife, but beneath the surface."

But much of the oil appears to have been broken down into tiny, microscopic particles that are being consumed by bacteria. Little or none of the oil is on seafloor, she said, but is instead floating in the gulf waters.

Her conclusions come from the work of several NOAA boats now collecting water samples, as well as the analysis of academics brought in to help study the spill effects….

NOAA has been at the center of several disputes about what has been happening to the oil from the BP well. Early reports by university scientists of large plumes of oil moving below the water’s surface were generally dismissed by NOAA, and the agency has also determined that the sea turtles and sea mammals that washed up onshore after the spill do not appear to have died from the oil. These conclusions have led some to charge NOAA is underestimating the spill’s environmental damage.

What heretics! Mr. Obama had better replace all the people at NOAA, until he finds stooges who will say exactly what he wants.

A significantly more optimistic assessment of the environmental effects of the oil well blowout came Tuesday from Edward Owens, who worked with Exxon for four years on the Alaska-Valdez spill and who has been hired as a consultant to BP. Owens was quoted by AFP as saying the fragile Louisiana marshes would be close to pre-blowout condition within months and that the environmental impact on the gulf as a whole would be "quite small."


This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, July 28th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “NOAA Head: Gulf Oil Biodegrading Quickly”

  1. BigOil says:

    No way this can be true. Maybe the oil was just caught up in the gulf stream and is staining the beaches up the east coast and Greenland. We should send the experts out to check for oil stained polar bears.

    Here’s another theory. Could it be that the devils at BP understood by dispersing the oil it would facilitate evaporation and consumption by microbes? Just a wild guess.

    We hear the term the fog of war – it appears the fog of media hysteria is even more dense.

  2. AcornsRNutz says:

    “The sheer volume of oil that’s out there has to mean there are some pretty significant impacts,” she said.

    Emphasis on the word “has”. This is telling. They simply refuse to believe this could possibly not be bad enough to enrage the common folks to the point of wishing the destruction of the oil industry as a whole. Frankly, this statement sounds like a whining 3 year old refusing to believe there are no more cookies in the jar. Pathetic.

  3. Warren says:

    Nature ALWAYS cleans itself up. The “problems” occur when we humans, in a hurry, help.

  4. proreason says:

    “Don’t these people realize that the permanent destruction of the Gulf of Mexico is ‘settled science’?”

    and it is.

    The jobs will never come back. The Moron has seen to that.

    Maybe next time, Lousisiana will be wise enough to vote the right way.

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