rev. May 4, 2010
Since broader media coverage inevitably focuses on the bloody shirt and what ever will sell advertising and skips boring factual information, I thought I my provide a little low-spin information. I'm not with the Sierra Club, I don't work for a major oil company, and I don't live in the area such that my boat or lively hood is at stake. I like clean water but I recognize that I consume oil.
The current amount collected seems pretty pitiful, but I would guess that the number is at least 24 hours old and the sea state has only allowed effective skimming for a day of so. On the other hand, it's typical in spill clean-up efforts that much of the oil volume credited as recovered is actually water mixed in with the oil.
Still, that is a lot of boom and a lot of skimming platforms. There is also a lot more time, until the well is capped. Let's hope.
From NOAA and the Coast Guard:
May 4, 2010 Operations:
Total Vessels (including tugs and skimmers): 196
Boom deployed: 486,940 feet
Boom available: 668,081 feet
Oil and Water Mix - Recovered: 23,968 gallons
Dispersant Used : 156,012 gallons
Dispersant available: 230,000 gallons
Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV): 10
Overall Personnel Responding: 7,484
In addition to the overall personnel responding, more than 2,000 volunteers have been trained to assist in the response effort.
9 staging areas are in place and ready to protect sensitive shorelines. These areas include:
Port Sulphur, La.
Port Fourchon, La.
Dauphin Island, Ala.
Shell Beach, La.
Weather conditions for May 4: Winds from the south at 8-9 knots, 2-3 foot seas.
From the State of Louisiana:
Spill Trajectory Maps:
Maps - Past and Future
And you can even hire-out to join the clean-up effort.
Vessels of Opportunity
But you won't compete with the beast they are sending to drill relief wells: