BP: Macondo Well Integrity Not Compromised

BP: Macondo Well Integrity Not Compromised

BP has seen no evidence from a recent oil sheen that indicates the integrity of the Macondo well has been comprised, the company said in a response about a U.S. Coast Guard report showing that an oil sheen spotted Sept. 16 matches oil that leaked from Macondo following the Deepwater Horizon incident in 2010.

BP said it would continue to work with the U.S. Coast Guard on any further investigation to identify potential sources of an oil sheen that has been matched with oil that leaked from the Macondo well following the Deepwater Horizon incident in 2010.

The company is also prepared to work with drilling contractor Transocean in inspecting its equipment and debris on the sea floor, BP told Rigzone in a statement Thursday.

"As the Coast Guard noted in its press release [regarding the report], the sheen is not feasible to recover and poses no threat to the shore line," said BP in a statement.

BP first reported the sheen on Sept. 16 to the National Response Center, and has since worked closely with the U.S. Coast Guard and NOAA [National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration] to investigate the sheen.

"Over flights, vessel surveys and other voluntary steps taken by BP over the past few weeks continue to indicate the integrity of the Macondo well and its associated relief well," the company said in a statement.

BPhas also collected and analyzed sheen samples, which indicate a correlation with Macondo source oil but also indicate the presence of alpha-olefins, a compound found in the drilling mud but not in the source oil.

"This strongly suggests the oil is emanating from the debris from the Deepwater Horizon accident," said BP in a statement. "The size of the sheen, its persistent point of origin and other factors indicate the likely source is the bent riser pipe that once connected the rig to the well head, where a mix of oil, drilling mud and seawater were trapped after the top kill operation."

BP last September confirmed the integrity of the Macondo well with a remotely operated vehicle inspection that was conducted in the presence of a number of federal agencies.

Representative Calls for Full Undersea Survey of Macondo Site

Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass) called Thursday for the federal government to order BP to deploy undersea rovers to examine the well site, the sunken rig, the drill pipe and the surrounding area. Markey also said the survey should be conducted live on the Internet to allow independent scientists to see the activities as they occur.

"BP must do everything in its power to ensure this well does not rupture or leak, and they should be held responsible if it does," said Markey in a statement. "BP still has millions to pay to the people of the Gulf and the U.S. government, but the Gulf region also deserves the peace of mind that this well is dead once and for all."

Markey, who successfully called for the release of a live internet feed of the undersea rovers during the Macondo oil spill, said the return of Macondo oil raises the issue of BP's outstanding fines and damage assessments from the spill.

He added that additional oil spill and residual effects from the spill should be considered in the final judgment, including the provisions for additional fines and damages if recurring seeps and leaks are determined to be possible.


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