Concerns About BP Relief Well Success Rise Along With Evidence of Chemical Damage, Spread of Oil

The Financial Times highlights a concern we had raised early on about the effort by BP to drill a relief well to stop the flow of oil into the Gulf. While many analysts have acted as if the BP forecast, that the well would be completed by August, there is no reason to assume the initial effort will succeed, particularly at this depth, which is unprecedented for this effort. We pointed out the last effort to drill a relief for a large leak in the Gulf, at Ixtoc in 1979, took ten month to yield results. The commentary i the story suggests that a delay would not be as severe.

From the Financial Times:

Almost 6,060m below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico and 4,500m below the seabed, BP’s engineers are zeroing in on a narrow target: the 25cm-wide steel casing of its old Macondo well, which has been leaking oil since late April…

While those in the industry believe the relief wells will eventually stop the oil, they note the scale of the challenge. In addition to the depth, the original drilling process suffered several setbacks because of the difficult geology and pressures.

“Drilling a well thousands of feet into rock to hit a target no more than six inches [15cm] wide isn’t exactly a sure thing,” says Guy LeBas, strategist at Janney Capital Markets. “There remains a risk that the leak could continue past August.”

BP, under pressure from Washington, is drilling two relief wells to multiply the chances of success…

The intersection is targeted for a section of the pipe that is less than 10 inches in diameter.

“It may take a couple of tries,” says Jonathan Parry, of consultants IHS CERA and who previously worked as a deepwater engineering advisor for Chevron. “It may take more than one relief well,” Mr Parry says.

Experience suggests that it can take several attempts – and more time than BP has so far admitted…

“It is extremely difficult,” says a geologist. Oil engineers warn that the extra attempts do not require a full, new relief well, however. If BP fails to intersect the well at its first attempt, the engineers will backtrack and use their directional drilling systems, which allow them to move their drill like a snake. Each attempt will take days or weeks, rather than the three months needed to drill a new well, they say

On other fronts, another concern raised early on, that the dispersant used by BP, Corexit, was dangerous and could cause additional harm, appears to be valid. Crops near the Gulf Coast are showing damage consistent with Corexit toxicity. From SFGate (hat tip reader Doc Holiday):

BP’s favorite dispersant Corexit 9500 is being sprayed at the oil gusher on the ocean floor. Corexit is also being air sprayed across hundreds of miles of oil slicks all across the gulf…

Corexit 9500 is a solvent originally developed by Exxon and now manufactured by the Nalco of Naperville, Illinois (who by the way just hired some expensive lobbyists). Corexit is is four times more toxic than oil (oil is toxic at 11 ppm (parts per million), Corexit 9500 at only 2.61ppm).

In a report written by Anita George-Ares and James R. Clark for Exxon Biomedical Sciences, Inc. titled “Acute Aquatic Toxicity of Three Corexit Products: An Overview” Corexit 9500 was found to be one of the most toxic dispersal agents ever developed…

The UK’s Marine Management Organization has banned Corexit so if there was a spill in the UK’s North Sea, BP is banned from using Corexit. In fact Corexit products currently being used in the Gulf were removed from a list of approved treatments for oil spills in the U.K. more than a decade ago. The Environmental Advisory Service for Oil and Chemical Spills at IVL, Swedish Environmental Institute, has, upon request of the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency evaluated Corexit extensively and recommended it not be used in Swedish waters.

The Swedish study concludes: “The studies suggest that a mixture of oil and dispersant give rise to a more toxic effect on aquatic organisms than oil and dispersants do alone… The research on toxicity of oils mixed with dispersants has, however, shown high toxicity values even when the dispersant per se was not very toxic.” A report for the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Spill Prevention and Response concluded that Corexit actually inhibits bacterial degradation of crude oil. It may look good on the surface but it will take longer for natural bacteria to eat up the crude oil.

Studies on Corexit and its effects on plants are consistent with the damage sustained in the lower Mississippi area. Check out the table on page 877 of the study. While no one precisely knows, all the signs point to BP’s use of aerosolized Corexit brought inland by the ocean winds or rain.

Yves here. Note the author points out that the link between Corexit and crop damage at this point is “conjecture”. Update 2:30 AM: Reader Kalpa believes the more likely culprit for the plant damage is sulfur trioxide vapors released from the Lucite Chemical plant in Millington, Tennessee, which was shut down by the EPA until the problem was resolved. Back to the original post.

However, other commentators are concerned that evaporating oil and dispersants may be harming clean-up crews and Gulf residents. From the Orlando Independent Examiner (hat tip reader Doc Holiday):

Toxins that are released into the air from evaporating oil and dispersants may pose a greater health risk to clean-up workers and Gulf residents than oily water when the thickest parts of the oil slick wash ashore…

Scientists and researchers, however, are keenly aware of potential health risks to people not only from exposure to oil in the water, but also to fumes in the air. The Institute for Southern Studies (ISS) reported as early as May 10 that, “the latest evaluation of air monitoring data shows a serious threat to human health from airborne chemicals emitted by the ongoing deep water gusher.”…

A report published by the Louisiana Environmental Action Network (LEAN) analyzed data released by the EPA taken from a testing site in Venice, LA between April 26 and May 26 (see chart). The results show unsafe levels of both Hydrogen Sulfide and VOCs in the air.

For instance, on May 3 hydrogen sulfide had been detected at concentrations more than 100 times greater than the level known to cause physical reactions in people. The fluctuations in readings are attributed to many factors such as wind speed and direction, heat index and other atmospheric conditions that vary on a daily basis.

A more recent report published by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) analyzes offshore air quality data released by BP. The findings replicate conclusions in earlier reports that the level of toxins in the air is unsafe for humans. “Nearly 70% (275 out of 399) of offshore air samples had detectable levels of hydrocarbons and nearly 1 in 5 (73 out of 399) had levels greater than 10 parts per million (ppm), which is an EPA cutoff level for further investigation. 6 samples exceed 100 ppm which in a previous monitoring summary was labeled as the action limit.”

Moreover, there are now reports of BP oil on the US East Coast (hat tip reader emca from Alexander Higgins):

I confirmed that water and oil mixture then does indeed extend to the Florida Keys as shown on the ROFFS map which directly contradicts the statement NOAA has made stating that the Florida Keys and South Florida will be unaffected by the spill.

ROFFS also told me that in addition to the confirmed Jacksonville oil concentration that there are unconfirmed reports of oil in Fort Pierce, Florida which is south of the Jacksonville as well as unconfirmed reports of oil as far north as the Washington D.C and Maryland area.

The post includes a recording and transcript of the call. Higgins also has a cheery report that the mixture of oil and Corexit is damaging boat hulls.

Emca also pointed out that BP is not cooperating with effort to fingerprint the oil, which would enable researchers to be certain that oil sighted is indeed from the Gulf leak.

Needless to say, this is all pretty disheartening.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. sherparick

    It is very sad, but BP almost from the start has been acting in ways to at least create ambiguity about potential liability and doing its utmost to control the information collected by individuals not within its control, or in the case of the US Government, its influence. For a variety of reasons, Obama (a former coal state senator and an urban background where environmentalism is seen as a job killer) did not put much concern in changing the culture of the U.S. Government agencies, which been subjected to 30 years of anti-environmental reaction (not really excepting the Clinton-Gore administration), particularly the purges that went through NOAA, Interior, Fish & Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Forest Service, etc. during the years of Bush-Cheney. People who advanced in the bureaucracy were the ones who served the political and industrial groups, particularly oil and gas, who were favored. Obama and Salazar to a to the extent they applied no energy to changing it continued that culture. Till people start losing their jobs (see the Department of the Army and Arlington Cemetery), people will not be motivated to change.

    1. attempter

      an urban background where environmentalism is seen as a job killer

      Oh, that’s why he BP’s stooge. He’s worried about “jobs”.

      And silly me, I thought it’s because he’s a sniveling little corporate bootlick.

      But you’ll have to help me with this. How does this alleged solicitude for jobs explain his manifest lack of interest in making job creation any priority at all, let alone the number one priority, the way it obviously should be?

      The fact is that Obama has nothing but conptempt for jobs and the people who hold them, while his only desire is to help empower corporate tyranny and help loot the country on its behalf.

      Always go with that and you’ll always be in accord with the evidence; keep trying desperately to cobble together any kind of alternate explanation because you’re still in thrall to the noxious Obama cult, and you’ll keep running afoul of the evodence.

      Emca also pointed out that BP is not cooperating with effort to fingerprint the oil, which would enable researchers to be certain that oil sighted is indeed from the Gulf leak.

      If they’re obstructing efforts to fingerprint the oil, then they give us the right to make them strictly responsible for ALL oil sighted. We should do so.

      1. Cullpepper

        “Oh, that’s why he BP’s stooge. He’s worried about “jobs”.

        And silly me, I thought it’s because he’s a sniveling little corporate bootlick.”

        Hey, compared to who? Remember George “Saudi” Bush and Dick “Haliburton” Cheney?

        Let’s not make this partisan, the ENTIRE hill is nothing but corporate shills. Well, maybe not Al Franken, but who listens to a comedian?

        1. attempter

          Um, you’re the one trying to make it partisan by still desperately clinging to the nonsense that Obama’s some kind of “lesser of two evils”.

          Franken’s one of the “process” cretins who voted for cloture on the Bernanke vote though he was going to vote No on Bernanke himself.

          So you can tell him thanks for nothing.

          (What should be needless yo say, onl;y a partisan would ever support the colture-Yes-substance-No sociopathy.)

  2. blunt

    So, now we seem to be developing the “undocumented” and “undocumentable” effects that have been worrisome at least since this entire fiasco began. Dead sea, dead rain, dead air, dead plants, dead soil, desert, destruction.

    These morons have their apocalypse. Bet they’ll all be lookin’ for Jesus coming down through the clouds shortly and themselves rising into said clouds.

    Good enough for ’em. Maybe they’ll get the deadly crud before the rest of us do.

    Why does it become ominously evident that nothing good is going to come from this.

    And I think it’s time to call the spade the spade and just go ahead and admit that this is a systemic and endemic and absolutely predictable problem of a nakedly capitalist system, especially when coupled with a traditional “every man for himself” culture like USA’s.

    I hate to write gloom and doom, but I am starting to think that BP has already written it.

  3. Matthew

    Wow… Fortune mag just had an interview with the CEO of Nalco — which makes Corexit — where he claims that it is absolutely safe… Granted, it was an interview, not an investigative feature; still, they might’ve mentioned the above concerns…

    1. doc holiday

      Fortune mag just had an interview with the CEO of Nalco

      ==> ” So far, Nalco has estimated that it will probably sell $40 million worth of Corexit, up from the roughly $2 million in typical annual sales of the product.”

      Great news!!!$$$ Too bad there are very few if ant studies on human exposure to their product… (find me some studies please).

  4. Gonzalo Lira

    This oil spill, if it remains uncontained, could represent an extinction-level event—for everyone, not just Americans.

    The sad thing is, everyone in the US is passing the buck—BP, the government, the manufacturer of Corexit, even the American people for foolishly, irresponsibly claiming that corporations can “police themselves”. Everyone is pointing the finger at someone else, while trying to dodge “liability”, instead of all pitching together and solving this crisis.

    Everyone responsible will get away with this dodging of responsibility. But ultimately, we all pay for American arrogance and greed.

    1. Vinny

      “But ultimately, we all pay for American arrogance and greed.”

      In this case, more like British arrogance and greed.


      1. Gonzalo Lira

        No. BP is half British, half American, formed by the merger of British Petroleum and Amoco (formerly Standard Oil), and then the subsequent merging with another American company, Arco (formerly Atlantic Richfield Co.).

        The workers on the drill, as well as the executives supervising the drill on the ground, were all American.

        Furthermore, the American government’s lack of even minimal supervision of BP’s drilling is a an American disgrace. Smaller countries, such as Norway, hold BP and other off-shore drillers to tough standards—the American government treated BP as if BP were doing them a favor by drilling.

        This is an American problem—American caused, through and through. But the effects will touch all of us in the rest of the world.


  5. prostratedragon

    Given the way things are going, the name Macondo for this prospect seems ironic to say the least. Among other things, the Macondo of García Marquez is a place where all memory of events witnessed in some part by hundreds is occasionally known to vanish.

    From Rabassa’s translation of One Hundred Years of Solitude:

    “There must have been three thousand of them,” he murmured.
    “The dead,” he clarified. “It must have been all the people who were at the station.”
    The woman measured him with a pitying look. “There haven’t been any dead here,” she said. “Since the time of your uncle, the colonel, nothing has happened in Macondo.” In the three kitchens where José Arcadio Segundo stopped before reaching home they told him the same thing: “There weren’t any dead.” He went through the small square by the station and he saw the fritter stands piled one on top of the other and he could find no trace of the massacre.

    1. campbeln

      Heeheehee… I’ve always read it as “Ma-condo”, as in “My Condo” which I too found a little more then ironic!

      but I must say, the literally irony is thicker still.


      1. prostratedragon

        Me too, I’m afraid.

        Irony’s the thing that’s so thick it’ll kill us in the end. Some seemingly natural but far-too aptly accusatory occurence down the pike will cause us all to sigh our last as one.

        1. prostratedragon

          The “whimper” at the end, as in “not with a bang, but …” will be the little fellow who never quite gets the joke.

          There. I’m through now.

    2. LeeAnne


      That passage was worth the whole book to me, a book I found tedious and difficult otherwise.

      I am glad to be reminded again about how the worst crimes against humanity work.

      Like the millions of American working people ‘downsized’ over the last 20 or 30 years to the enthusiastic applause of shareholders; the silence is deafening.

      1. prostratedragon

        I loved it, but in the end, you know what — that’s the episode that counts, alright.

      2. NOTaREALmerican

        Re: Like the millions of American working people ‘downsized’ over the last 20 or 30 years to the enthusiastic applause of shareholders; the silence is deafening.

        You are also forgetting the enthusiastic applause of the OTHER peasants who weren’t downsize. The peasants love to throw stones at each other as the nobility cheers them on.

        Get a job you losers. I work for a living. I don’t expect to get welfare just because my job becomes useless! Ha Ha Ha. People are scum.

        Something America’s liberals also can’t talk about.

    3. emca

      The irony is: a Thousand Years is if nothing else – about mortality; the end of people, of families, of towns and other human inventions, of ways of life, the overall fragility and futility of human efforts in the face of an omnipotent, incomprehensible natural and a-natural forces.

      Does this parallel BP’s Macondo? There might be a few on the Gulf who feel so.

      I was going to say Thousand Years of Solitude is one of the finest books I’ve read of recent authors, a tour-de-force of immense, unceasingly intense humanity – but I’ll hold my extravagant praise.

  6. Crocodile Chuck

    re: August estimate for relief well ‘plugging’ Macondo….

    the Montara blowout last year in the Timor Sea took five attempts over two and half months for a relief well to be successfully drilled:

    NB Montara was in waters 160 feet deep-not 5,000 (with the reservoir 18,000 feet below THAT)

  7. Hugh

    You have two types of medical effects from an environmental disaster like this. Think about the Twin Towers clean up for example. You have acute problems, such as headache, nausea, shortness of breath from inhaling oil/dispersant or rash from skin contact with them. Then you have the long term concerns. You can have damage to the structure of the lung from prolonged inhalation. You can have other organ damage. And you can get cancers from exposures to carcinogens in the oil. Many of these can take months or years to develop. Take another example, the tobacco industry. Will BP fight these in court first contesting any connection between the disease and the exposure to oil and Corexit? This does seem to be a standard dodge. An insidious use of the argument that correlation or happenstance is not causation. Then when this line is breached moving on to the argument that the victim contributed to their own exposure by not following BP protocols (even if those are a joke). OSHA and the EPA should be all over this but like most federal agencies they have so far played the role of handmaiden to BP.

  8. doc holiday


    Over one million gallons of the dispersant has been sprayed over the Gulf of Mexico and has caused a toxic chemical to be a permanent part of the sea bed and food chain in the bio structure in the Gulf of Mexico.
    Corexit® 9500 is four times more toxic than the oil itself causing an even more dangerous condition to exist in the Gulf of Mexico than if the oil was allowed to float to the shoreline.
    The dispersant was used deliberately in an attempt to lessen the financial burden of BP and to lessen the public reaction to the oil spill by forcing the oil to the bottom of the Gulf and thereby obviating the need for shoreline clean up.
    Corexit® 9500 has been illegal in the United Kingdom since 1998 when it was determined to be harmful to the food chain.

  9. doc holiday

    BP’s Pending Red Tide Falsification:

    BP to use Red Tide data for death toll? Why the haste????

    Looks like BP will try to manipulate data, in a suggestion that oil is not behind aqua deaths…

    > “It’s good that we have the data, and it’s sad that we are here,” said Balmer, who returned to the bay this month — on a hastily arranged research trip paid for by BP — for what could be a last check on the dolphins before the oil arrives.

    To this day, scientists from government agencies and universities can’t say for certain whether a red tide was responsible for the deaths of St. Joe’s dolphins six years ago. Just as perplexing is what percentage of the bay’s dolphin population at the time died that year and whether any of the bay’s current population of nearly 100 have the ability to leave their 73,000-acre sanctuary should oil threaten.

    Randall Wells, a scientist at Mote Marine Research Laboratory in Sarasota, has learned from more than 40 years of studies in Sarasota Bay that the dolphins there don’t stray far from home…


  10. Kalpa


    I covered the story of your plant devastation video on my Ag blog site on June 8.

    Since then, I’ve learned what is most probably the cause of the mysterious conditions. The most likely explanation looks to be Sulfur Trioxide vapors released from the smokestack of the Lucite Chemical plant in Millington, Tennessee. The EPA shut down the factory until the problem was corrected.

    What is extremely odd is that the date of the spewing of the chemical video was May 25th. The date of the strange plant devastation story, by the same news channel out of Memphis, is June 1st and the people at the news station don’t seem to make the connection. Nor did the story ever get coverage from MSM, to my knowledge.

    To me, the chemical factory explanation makes a great deal more sense than the dispersants explanation.

  11. doc holiday

    BP Is Coming to the CLEAN GULF Training & Exhibition

    Also see aquatic toxicologist swept under the rug by EPA, CDC and FDA BP

    Before the House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Hearing entitled ” Deepwater Horizon: Oil Spill Prevention and Response Measures, and Natural Resource Impacts” May 19th, 2010

    Good morning Chairman Oberstarand members of the Committee …. ZZZzzzzzz ( Committee falls asleep…,)

    Unlike with oil impacts along the coast and shoreline, it is very difficult to see the actualeffects of the dispersed oil in the Ocean. Organisms, that die will fall to the seafloor. Thosethat do not die will not show sublethal repercussions for a while. Declining populations of awater column species may occur and shoreline species may become severely limited intheir food sources in addition to being faced with a contaminated food source.

    Oil dispersant increases PAH uptake by fish exposed to crude oil.

    These experiments suggest that the use of oil dispersants will increase the exposure of fish to hydrocarbons in crude oil.

    ==> I’m going about this all wrong, obviously, there must be studies that have babies happily floating in tubs and splashing Corexit on each other — maybe Berkshire has a poster, or maybe Obama’s kids take baths in this … who can say, it seems really safe. Gads, maybe Dairy Queen will have this as a Summer Treat in the Gulf? I’m sure Warren will use his $5 billion in Goldman preferred shares to load up on more Corexit and cash in on this Mr. Market Event……

  12. Dispersant Holiday

    “The unified command’s failure to skim the oil north of Horn Island yesterday is inept and inexcusable,” Moran said. “Had they deployed those resources, the impact to Jackson County would’ve been far less today.”
    She said she had asked the Coast Guard to assign skimmers and support vessels to monitor the Mississippi Sound at the mouth of the Biloxi Bay.
    “There’s still stuff out there that we can’t even see because of all the dispersant,” she said. “This is just outrageous and unacceptable.”
    Mississippi had largely escaped the onslaught of the Deepwater Horizon oil slick, even as shoreline in Louisiana, Alabama and Florida was washed by both thick gooey crude or thousands of tar balls.

    Read more:

    1. wunsacon

      “Dispersant Holiday” — that would make an excellent title for a new Sex Pistols song.

  13. doc holiday

    The equipment – Airborne Spectral Photometric Environmental Collection Technology (ASPECT) – is an emergency response sensor package operated by EPA. The information ASPECT collects can immediately be sent to a ground unit giving emergency workers at the scene the data they need to safely respond to a disaster

    The aircraft and sensor systems are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for emergency response. Any EPA on-scene coordinator can activate ASPECT. A phone call gets the system into the air in less than an hour.

    Bullshit! Where has this plane been the last 60 days and where are the images??

  14. Guest

    BP Oil on the East Coast

    the frustrating thing about Alexander Higgins blog that you reference is their lack of citations for their theories. The one citation he does provide is ROFFS, a quick visit their site is quite revealing …

  15. Dwight Baker

    Defeat the Flumes that threaten the death of our Gulf using the DOLPHIN FINN TM
    Copyright all rights reserved
    By Dwight Baker
    June 25, 2010

    Scientific evidence abounds that has identified the flumes of death in our Gulf. The bottom line is that the Flumes are starving out the oxygen needed for sea life to live. The proof of that is the dolphins that have been driven close to shore where the vast quantities of oil is still not present to take in fresh air.

    The fix is simple and will work, but as in all things depends how hard we want to fight.

    Injection of Oxygen and other agents under the flumes.
    1. Enlist large open deck ships with on board housing /crane capacity/ draw works capacity on bow with up too 5,000 ft of submerged cable with sufficient load capacity to pull in tow the [DOLPHIN SAVER] load up large containers of Liquid Oxygen along with a coiled tubing unit injector in the aft with 2 to 4 inch coiled tubing loaded on the reel with sufficient 2-4 inch casing to reach under the depths that have been defined by the Scientific community where the flumes glued in a mass and drifts with the prevailing currents.
    2. Manufacture an Oxygen injector [DOLPHIN SAVER] best guess 40 feet long 30 feet wide that would glide along under the flume with least resistance and micro inject tiny Oxygen bubbles as the ship moves along at a slow pace with strategically placed on top and below self propelled props that would circulate the viscous hydro carbons to the right then the left to enhance the flow of the oxygen to infiltrate and break up.
    3. Move the ship to areas where flumes exist lower probes down to that effected areas.
    4. Lower the coiled tubing down under the flume by 20 to 50 feet.
    5. The set in place viscous oil should begin to surface — then once on surface have recovery ships following to skim and pump up to be discarded.

    All rights reserved by Dwight Baker with process patents filed in the USA.
    Contact Dwight Baker PO Box 7065 Eagle Pass TX 78853 tel 830-773-1077

  16. Bert

    The You Tube on the dying plants and birds – – is apparently NOT related to the oil spill. Channel 3 and Shawn Chaiyabhat the reporter – – is from Tennessee as is the county of Shelby. That is quite a ways from the Gulf Spill.

    I think it would be proper to check things before slamming them up on the web?

    1. doc holiday

      I think it would be proper to check things before slamming them up on the web…

      Wrong dude!!!!!!!!!!!!

      The government and BP are pushing a media blackout and causing a great deal of mis-information and chaos — and I strongly believe the health concerns related to what BP has done are being downplayed to the extreme max — just like the mis-reporting of the flow from the well, from day one. The peripheral health-related concerns and questions correlated to this chemical attack are very real!

      Slamming BP over the massive use and abuse of Corexit is obviously something people need to be asking questions about — in addition to the health-related concerns related to exposure of oil in the air, water, soil, plants and our foodchain. If crop failures look like a possibility, we need to understand if that’s related, if people are getting sick, we need to know why — the thing we don’t need is a media smokescreen and shills like you defending propaganda and corporations! Go surf the web and look at the reality of the damage or better yet, go provide some research on human genetics studies related to mass use of Corexit or the carcinogenic nature of oil — then tell me how much oil is in our blood!

  17. marketseer

    Last week we had three top professors from three major universities in Texas visiting one of our companies trying to find solution to some of the water problems related to BP using our waste water treatment product electrocagulation Besides the oil spill you have waste water issues with stuff you clean. So you have an oil covered pelican and to clean it you put chemicals in the water and than what do you do with that water that comes off the pelican? Well we create portable units to treat water like that and these professors are trying to get government grants to clean that water.

    Anyway I type all of that because they were talking about a big concern is if a hurricane hits directly it could cause a 200 mile deadzone (everything plants, animals, everything) because of the chemicals BP is using getting pushed on shore, one of them being Corexit 9500.

    1. NOTaREALmerican

      Well, China and India have already run extensive toxic “tests” on their own humans and – the good news is that – humans can survive, reproduce, and live happily (oblivious dumbass) lives in filthy toxic conditions.

      But, more importantly, the nation – and the nobility that own the nation – continue to thrive. I predict 99 out of 100 dumbass American peasants will vote Repulicrat this November; proving how much Americans love the nobility that leads this great and glorious nation.

      So, let’s keep things in perspective, shall we.

  18. NOTaREALmerican

    Re: Note the author points out that the link between Corexit and crop damage at this point is “conjecture”

    What are you worried about? Four out of five doctors smoke Camels.

  19. doc holiday

    I hate to beat an oily dead horse, but

    Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons on the Gulf Coastline

    > Analyzing Air Samples for PAHs

    At this time, EPA is using health-protective screening levels that assume a person is breathing a pollutant continuously (24 hours a day, seven days a week) for as long as one year.

    If air pollution reaches levels requiring immediate action, you will be notified via local BP-Controlled news media.

    ==> To me, that suggests they are diluting the data points to fit into a huge annual timeframe and thus diminishing the current daily exposure risks. This also looks like the fun game that BP was using, as they switched back and forth between barrels per day and gallons per day…

    From that EPA/BP page, they provide this:

    Benzo(a)pyrene: 640 ng/m3 and below **
    Benzo(a)anthracene: 6,400 ng/m3 and below
    Benzo(b) fluoranthene: 6,400 ng/m3 and below
    Benzo(k) fluoranthene: 6,400 ng/m3 and below

    ==> Parts Per Million Conversions

    “M” is a symbol for “Molar” or moles per liter.

    nanograms/cubic m = ng/m3

    nanogram = ng
    cubic meters = m3

    micrograms/gram = ug/g

    picogram= pg

    ppm = ug/g =ug/ml = ng/mg = pg/ug = 10 -6

    ==> Ok, I’m totally lost; are you experienced?? go here: Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs) for Hazardous Substances

    BENZENE Inh. Acute 0.009 ppm 300 Immuno. Final 08/07 000071-43-2


    The concentration of benzene in air samples from metropolitan areas was 0.58 ppb.

    Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs)

  20. same

    OOpps, cut this off:

    ==> Ok, go here: Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs) for Hazardous Substances

    BENZENE Inh. Acute 0.009 ppm 300 Immuno. Final 08/07 000071-43-2


    The concentration of benzene in air samples from metropolitan areas was 0.58 ppb.

    Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs)
    An MRL of 0.009 ppm has been derived for acute-duration inhalation exposure (≤14 days).
    An MRL of 0.006 ppm has been derived for intermediate-duration inhalation exposure (15–364 days).
    An MRL of 0.003 ppm has been derived for chronic-duration inhalation exposure (≥1 year).

  21. doc dead horse holiday

    My apologies… on-the-fly research

    Air quality standards

    Limit values of Directive 2008/50/EC (and 2000/69/EC)
    Pollutant: Benzene
    Limit Value Objective: Protection of human health
    Averaging Period: calendar year
    Limit Value ug/m3 = 5
    Limit Value ppb = 1.5
    Limit Value Attainment Date = 1 Jan 2010

    So, what does that tell me (us)?

    Benzene 1 ppb = 3.24 ug/m3

    Target Values of Directive = Benzo(a)pyrene

    ==> Apparently the latest EPA measurment for Benzo(a)pyrene = 640 ng/m3 and below …. anyone know how to convert this????

    nanograms/cubic m = ng/m3

    “Ppb is µmol of pollutant divided by kmol of mixture, and the pollutant is converted to µg, and the mixture to m³”

    ===>> Why do I think we are all getting falsified data???

    Hey, maybe I’ll send that chick an email …. she shouldknow:

    Sorry to be a pain.

  22. Ayn Rand

    You sniveling unimaginative fools. Can’t you see the natural environment is being triaged by corporate and government interests? I used to feel safe in my gated community, thinking that all I needed was armed thugs to protect me from angry proles. Now I’m moving to my private bioshphere financed by BP, Exxon and Halliburton where the youngest, cutest gigolos will serve me into my final decreptitude. We’ll be running a little hotel here with the John Galt suite permanently reserved for Dick Cheney. Perhaps he’ll expire here and I can add his ashes to my little bit of heaven.
    Bye Bye,

    1. NOTaREALmerican

      Ayn! You must believe. If you lose hope, what will the (political nerdy) introverted males fantasize about their future?

      All they have to look forward too is a never ending oppressive public-transit ride to hell in a bus filled with extroverted socialists.


      1. Ayn Rand

        Do I sound like I’ve lost hope?

        Ahhh those nerdy males, their fantasies are mildly titillating. But I stock my stables with young studs from Permian Basin high school teams. Dick sends me yearbooks on approval yearly.

        Toodles, and remember to breathe deeply,


    2. Mickey Marzick in Akron, Ohio

      Now we know why ATLAS SHRUGGED? Ayn’s been waiting for Big Dick all along…

  23. doc holiday

    Occasionally, concentrations of chemicals in water may be written as grams per cubic meter (g/m3). This is the same as grams per 1000 liters, which may be converted to milligrams per liter (mg/L). Therefore, 1g/m3 = 1 mg/L = 1 ppm. Like-wise, one milligram per cubicmeter (mg/m3) is the same concentration in water as one microgram per liter (ug/L), which is about 1 ppb

    Where, Benzene 1 ppb = 3.24 ug/m3

    Latest EPA measurment for Benzo(a)pyrene = 640 ng/m3

    So, EPA latest air quality measure in the Gulf is using: 1 nanogram (ng) = 1/1,000,000,000 gram =
    0.000000001 gram/cubicmeter (1,000 liters (L))

    >> That sounds retarded!

    Apparently this is a method for collecting air?

    Calculations of air concentrations
    For the sorbent tube samples the air concentrations were calculated as a concentration removed from a volume of air moving through the sampling media. Analytical results are presented in ug/sample. The concentrations are converted from ug/sample to ng/m3 with the
    following calculations:

    (equation left out, due to subscript errors)

    The analytical canister results are presented in ppbv (parts per billion by volume). The results
    are converted to ng/m3 with the following calculations:

    ==> Ok, this helps:

    Concentrations in Air
    Concentrations of chemicals in air are typically measured in units of the mass of chemical (milligrams, micrograms, nanograms, or picograms) per volume of air (cubic meter or cubic feet). However, concentrations may also be expressed as parts per million (ppm) or parts per billion (ppb) by using a conversion factor. The conversion factor is based on the molecular weight of the chemical and is different for each chemical. Also, atmospheric temperature and pressure affect the calculation.

    Typically, conversions for chemicals in air are made assuming a pressure of 1 atmosphere and a temperature of 25 degrees Celsius. For these conditions, the equation to convert from concentration in parts per million to concentration in milligrams per cubic meter (mg/m3) is as follows:

    Concentration (mg/m3) = 0.0409 x concentration (ppm) x molecular weight
    To convert from mg/m3 to ppm, the equation is as follows:
    Concentration (ppm) = 24.45 x concentration (mg/m3) ÷ molecular weight

    The same equations may be used to convert micrograms per cubic meter (ug/m3) to parts per billion (ppb) and vice versa:
    Concentration (ug/m3) = 0.0409 x concentration (ppb) x molecular weight
    Or, concentration (ppb) = 24.45 x concentration (ug/m3) ÷ molecular weight

    Here is an example. The molecular weight of benzene is 78. If the concentration of benzene in air is 10 mg/m3, convert to the units of ppm by multiplying 24.45 x 10 mg/m3 ÷ 78 = 3.13 ppm.

    Note: Sometimes you will see chemical concentrations in air given in concentration per cubic feet (ft3) instead of concentration per cubic meter (m3). The conversion from cubic feet to cubic meter and vice versa is as follows: 1 ft3 = 0.02832 m3 and 1 m3 = 35.31 ft3.

    That was from:;jsessionid=243uv4dsa647e

    ==> so, back on track, the latest EPA measurment for Benzo(a)pyrene = 640 ng/m3 which equals = how many ppb?

    If your life depends on the EPA and BP, do you trust them?

  24. holy shit


    ==> Latest EPA measurment for Benzo(a)pyrene = 640 ng/m3 which equals = how many ppb?

    See: Ambient levels of benzo[a]pyrene are routinely monitored at approximately twenty sites in the California air toxics monitoring network. The statewide average concentration of benzo[a]pyrene during 1998-2000 was 0.19 ng/m3, based on values ranging from 0.025 ng/m3 to 4.6 ng/m3. The current routine monitor closest to Crockett is in Fremont. Relative to the statewide average, the Fremont region was 32% lower for the same time period, averaging 0.13 ng/m3.


    That should cause people to have a moment of doubt, but, I’m just a blogger….

  25. BP Cancer


    Several PAHs are routinely monitored by the statewide Air Resources Board (ARB) air toxics network. The table below gives the network’s mean concentration, in nanograms per cubic meter (ng/m3), of various PAHs from January 1996 through December 1996 (ARB, 1997c).
    PAH Compound Mean Concentration (ng/m3)
    Benzo[a]pyrene 0.194
    Benzo[b]fluoranthene 0.245
    Benzo[g,h,i]perylene 0.619
    Benzo[k]fluoranthene 0.100
    Dibenz[a,h]anthracene 0.031
    Indeno[1,2,3-cd]pyrene 0.327
    When benzo[a]pyrene was formally identified as a toxic air contaminant, the ARB estimated a population-weighted annual ambient concentration of 0.53 ng/m3 based on 1988 to 1989 monitoring data (ARB, 1994e).

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency (U. S. EPA) has also compiled ambient concentration data from several study areas throughout the United States during 1984-91. The overall mean concentration for POM was 8.4 ng/m3 (U.S. EPA, 1993a).

    The U.S. EPA has classified benzo[a]pyrene in Group B2: Probable human carcinogen, and has calculated an oral unit risk estimate of 2.1 x 10-4 (microgram per liter)-1. This means that if an individual were to ingest water containing benzo[a]pyrene at 0.005 micrograms per liter over an entire lifetime, that person would theoretically have no more than a 1-in-1-million increased chance of developing cancer (U.S. EPA, 1994a). The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified benzo[a]pyrene in Group 2A: Probable human carcinogen based on sufficient evidence in animals and limited evidence in humans (IARC, 1987a).

    The State of California has determined under Proposition 65 that several POM compounds (including benzo[b]fluoranthene, benzo[j]fluoranthene, benzo[k]fluoranthene, benzo[a]pyrene, chrysene, indeno[1,2,3-cd]pyrene, 3,7-dinitrofluoranthene, and 3,9-dinitrofluoranthene) are carcinogens (CCR, 1997). The inhalation potency factor that has been used as a basis for regulatory action in California is 1.1 x 10-3 (microgram per cubic meter)-1 for benzo[a]pyrene (OEHHA, 1994). In other words, the most potential excess cancer risk for a person exposed over a lifetime to 1 microgram per cubic meter of benzo[a]pyrene is 1,100 in one million. The oral potency factor that has been used as a basis for regulatory action in California is 12 (milligram per kilogram per day)-1 for benzo[a]pyrene (OEHHA, 1994).

    ==> I wonder what the inhalation potency factor is for people in the Gulf that are exposed to Benzo(a)pyrene = 640 ng/m3 on a daily basis? Of course, Benzo(a)pyrene is just one problem among a growing list….

    Sorry for the multiple posts, but this is very serious IMHO and instead of a media blackout, we should be looking at an evacuation.

  26. doc holiday

    E.P.A. Lags on Setting Some Air Standards, Report Finds

    The report, which was released last week, found that the agency had failed to develop emissions standards, due in 2000, for some sources of hazardous air pollutants.

    James S. Pew, a lawyer with the environmental law group Earthjustice, said that the E.P.A. had the financing it needed, and that it undercut itself by moving money away from the division that specifically deals with air toxics. “This is a situation where the lack of resources is just not a valid excuse,” Mr. Pew said.

Comments are closed.