Saturday, May 22, 2010


Andrew Revkin's recent post at Dot Earth reports that the independent scientists who are reviewing the newly released video footage of the underwater gusher say, "…Our assessments suggest that BP’s stated worst-case estimate of 60,000 barrels [a day] has been occurring all along."

Here is Revkin's Dot Earth post in full:

In a column on The Times Op-Ed page, four scientists from a team of specialists independently assessing the volume of oil gushing from BP’s destroyed seabed well provide more evidence that  the company cannot be trusted to put the public interest ahead of its corporate interests as this disaster continues to unfold. Here’s the researchers’ bottom line, followed by the full list of those involved in this effort, all of whom said they endorse today’s column:

…Our assessments suggest that BP’s stated worst-case estimate of 60,000 barrels [a day] has been occurring all along.
What matters most is that we take the steps to find out if it has. Starting now, BP and the government must begin using the best possible means to measure this spill, while preserving all records of events. On the ocean floor, we recommend acoustic velocimeters, high-rate video cameras and imaging sonar. For the underwater oil, sonobuoys could detect layers of oil, and undersea gliders could follow them autonomously. On the surface, military drone aircraft could find and track patches of oil headed for shore as well as conduct surveillance over this now gigantic spill. Like the methods we have used, these are all readily available solutions.
No surgeon in an operating room would neglect an unvarnished assessment of a bleeding patient. In this disaster, an accurate measurement of the oil spill is no less important.
- John Amos, president of

- Timothy Crone, research scientist, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University

- Oscar Garcia-Pineda, assistant scholar-scientist, Florida State University

- Norman Guinasso Jr, director, Geochemical and Environmental Research Group, Texas A&M University

- Samantha Joye, professor of marine science, University of Georgia, Athens

- Ian R. MacDonald, Professor of biological oceanography, Florida State University

- Paul Ruscher, associate professor, meteorology, Florida State University

- Steve Wereley, professor of mechanical engineering, Purdue University

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