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Good News?

Gulf Gusher symbolWhen I reloaded the page at 4:43PM CDT I noticed that the Leak Meter had stopped. Clicking through to PBS, they are reporting that the oil has stopped flowing into the Gulf from the Well from Hell after BP closed the valves on their cap. [Update: BP puts the stop time at 2:25PM CDT.]

This is a test, and they have to monitor the pressure to be sure that the oil doesn’t have another path to the surface, and hope that the pressure doesn’t blow the wellhead off the shaft. For now, I will take what is offered, while I wonder: why they didn’t do this months ago?

6 comments

1 JuanitaM { 07.15.10 at 10:22 pm }

Yayyy! It’s hard to get carried away with excitement after all the damage that’s been done but, hey, it’s a first step.

Crossing my fingers that this thing holds. Good luck down there!

2 Bryan { 07.15.10 at 11:16 pm }

It’s the only good news we’ve had in months, so we’ll take what we can get. We still have 100 million gallons, or more, of crude in the Gulf, so the damage continues, but at least we seem to have found the tunnel, so the light can come later.

3 Badtux { 07.15.10 at 11:37 pm }

Why didn’t they do this months ago? Because, uhm… oh yeah. Hurricane season. They wanted it closed in by hurricane season. And because of the relief well, they wanted things pressurized for the relief well, so that the mud being pumped in via the relief well didn’t just flow out the top of the wellhead. But didn’t want to do it until they had to, in case the BOP decided to just blow off the top of the casing like a rocket.

At least, that’s the only possible reasons I can think of. They may not make perfect sense, but neither does anything else BP has done regarding this well :(.

– Badtux the Oil Penguin

4 Bryan { 07.16.10 at 5:49 pm }

You are probably on to something with the connection to the relief well, especially if they suspected that the well integrity was already compromised. That’s why I fully expect them to connect hoses and start collecting again, to save the capability of stopping the flow for the mud from the relief well.

5 Elayne Riggs { 07.17.10 at 6:16 am }

I thought it was generally understood that they didn’t do this months ago because it was never their intention to stop the flow, only to recover as much oil as possible for themselves (i.e., divert it) rather than letting the Gulf have it.

6 Bryan { 07.17.10 at 5:02 pm }

That was certainly the impression we got down here on the Coast – it was about capturing and selling oil, not capping the well.