Does anyone have a handle on how much oil is flooding the Gulf right now?
I scoured the Herald articles today and they seem to be adopting uncritically the "official" 5000 barrels estimate, which equates to 210,000 gallons a day. (This means we will have surpassed the Exxon Valdez spill by mid-June if left unchecked.)
The NYT, however, is reporting potentially higher numbers:
BP told members of Congress the rate could be much, much higher:
In a closed-door briefing for members of Congress, a senior BP executive conceded Tuesday that the ruptured oil well could conceivably spill as much as 60,000 barrels a day of oil, more than 10 times the estimate of the current flow.
A barrel of crude oil contains roughly 42 gallons. In a follow-up story, the Times talked to a BP spokesman for more on the estimate:
"The rate could go up to that," Mr. Suttles of BP said, when asked to verify a report in The Times. "It's not the situation we have at this moment, but it's not impossible."
What are we doing about it? They're working on a "top-hat" maneuver that I admit got me a little bit excited:
the ``top hat'' will be warmed with hot water and injected with methanol....
Finally, RIP Frank Frazetta.