Friday, July 16, 2010

Day 2, Optimism for the Gulf, dismay for the conspiracy nuts

What a pleasant surprise it was to wake up this morning, grab a cup of coffee, sit down to check the live ROV feeds...

And see that the new cap stack was still holding the Macondo well in check.

It looks like good engineering by real engineers may have finally plugged the damned hole. As both BP and government officials noted, the test is not completed yet, and more than likely, flow will resume from the stack within the next few days.  But with the cap's integrity being demonstrated by the minute, the days of uncontrolled flow of crude are done.  All but perhaps a tiny trickle will be transported to the surface, processed and transported to refineries in Louisiana and Mississippi. Barring of course, a catastrophic chain of events that conspiracy nuts like Alex Jones and Matt Simmons have been running wild with.

Unless there's a massive tectonic plate shift causing a cauldron of fire and an Armageddon-ish methane eruption, or something, the end game is near. Maybe now, all those idiotic doom merchants can go find some other New World Order/Bilderberg/Trilateral Commission conspiracy to hawk. I don't care, but please find one that keeps you busy for a while, because I'm tired of the emails.  Maybe the disaster nuts who continually claim that BP and the government is lying; that the cap is really just a great big distraction and the Worst is Yet to ComeTM can just drink a big steaming cup of STFU.  Just go away.  Please don't send me anymore wild-assed YouTube videos or links to kooked out blogs full of black helicopters and stuff.

There's no more to see, here.  So please, go away.

At the Mississippi Canyon 252 prospect, aka Macondo, aka aboard the Deepwater Horizon Mobile Operating Drilling Unit, we saw a tragic accident caused by a failure to follow sound engineering and safety procedures.  We had the best engineering on the planet, along with the best technology, the best suite of lessons learned, and the best safety protocols in the industry be completely ignored by a company with a history of doing just that.  And the government let them do it.  But the fact is, it could have happened anywhere, and it's likely to happen again off the shores of South America, Africa or Southeast Asia.  And the consequences will be an order of magnitude worse than Macondo. Why?  Because banana republics and socialist authoritarian regimes don't have the money, experience or desire to protect life, property or the environment.

This was an accident.  It was not an inside job.  No, the North Koreans submarines didn't slink out of a Cuban port to torpedo the rig.  No, Haliburton did not conspire with BP and Transocean to cripple BP.  No, there really isn't a plan to depopulate the Gulf Coast.  No, it wasn't a plot by Soros and NALCO to kill the gulf with all that evil, nasty COREXIT. And no, there really isn't a deep sea volcano down there that BP and the government are covering up.  Geez Louise, there have been more conspiracy theories cooked up since April 20 than there have been dead pelicans picked up on Grand Isle. If they were half as clever as the nut jobs think they are, they'd have done a much better job of hiding, don't ya think?  After all, the lack of evidence is the surest sign that the conspiracy is working.

One more time for the really stubborn hardheads:  This was an accident, caused by human stupidity and government incompetence. And, as of at noon CDT today, the catastrophe is still over.

Update:  I got so wrapped around my Schadenfreude over the dismayed conspiracists that I forgot to add two important screenshots from testing last night.  These are images captured from the BOA Deep C ROV's, which were stationed on the sea floor.  The first is from BOA 1, on the bottom near the well.  The second is from BOA 2, on the bottom near the well head itself. 

I don't see any methane geysers coming up through fissures in the sea floor, Mr. Simmons.  Do you?  I don't see any oil blowing out from around the uncased wellhead either, Mr. Simmons.  It's probably time to cover your shorts...

Gimme some feedback in the comments.