The Gulf Oil Spill essay

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The oil spill at BP drilling site in Gulf Mexico morphed over 14 days from horrific though localized accident to the environmental disaster that is full scale. After the explosion of deeper Horizon Offshore drilling rig oil started gushing to the surface at a rate that was ever increasing. In the scenario that was worse, daily outflow oil was projected to beat 60,000 barrel mark. This paper looks at technologies to prevent and policies to clean the oil spill.Blowout prevention is one of the technologies. In the oil industry it is conventional fact that, oil drilling rigs and platform are not safe. Regardless of all safety precautions, there is often a probability of an accident that can lead to the destruction of the whole rig, just as it happened within the deeper waters. However, when this happens, a device that is separate is supposed to prevent oil trickle at the bottom; the bad luck of Bp was doubled when the activation of BOP failed. The device is being fixed by the deep-sea submersibles or the new one is being installed to prevent the oil flow at its lowest point, but so far, has failed, (Morrison, 2010).Containment domes are devices that are also known as coffer dams. This method is the second largest hope that BP has to entirely stop the leak. BP has lowered three containment domes that are 40-foot tall, over the pipe sections that leaks on seabed.  Though some oil will still escape, but the plan is sucking up most of it through the dome. This concept in addition shows indispensable crudity of our technology of deep-ocean. There exist no subtle things about dropping just under hundred tones of concrete onto a pipe that is leaking, (Morrison, 2010).
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Even after the successfulness of the above two methods, BP has to work on Relief wells over the coming weeks, that when finally done, it will divert the leaked oil away from spill site. The process of drilling the relief wells is more involving than the initial well, since, the drill bit has to work at an angle once it has penetrated the seabed. The firm estimates its relief well to cost around $ 100 million.Another technology is chemical dispersants. The process of combating oil spill by dumping many gallons of chemicals into the ocean seems to be the worst idea. However, dispersants that are being used by BP on oil, sprayed from helicopters and planes, in real sense are not far from detergents that are common. The dispersants breaks up heavy oil, just as it happens in commercials for dishwasher liquids. At the leak source, submersibles injects more dispersants in oil as it jets out, stopping some of it from ever touching the surface.Oil skimmers: as some oil floats on water, clever skimming systems have the capability of separating the oil so that it can be siphoned out and even times sold to the market just like other normal oil. The devices of skimming can range from massive to small, but in spite of advances in technology, there is no one that is large enough to tackle the Gulf-sized spill, at least with no months of work.

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Fire can also be used to clean oil spill. The oldest technology that man knows in oil cleaning is the use of fire. It looks like the quickest solution to oil spill. It is generally known that gasoline burns off quickly and a times it explode. On the other hand 'sweet crude' welling is a substance that in actual sense thick and heavy that does not burn easily and evenly. Though the Coast Guard tried to burn enough oil to stop it from reaching the Coastline of Louisiana, the technology failed, (Morrison, 2010). Use of Booms and Barriers is another way. Though it is not able to clean up oil spill, booms provide barriers as they float, to stop oil from spreading far. Though the Coast Guard brought enough to the spill, but rough sea made them inefficient when waves began sweeping oil over these booms.Use of Microbes:  trillions of microbes have been used to feed on petroleum cornucopia. In real sense, the fungi, bacteria and other living organisms that feed on hydrocarbons do not work that first, it usually take weeks, month to years to degrade oil. Unfortunately, the speed of microbes is affected by the availability of oil and its droplet, this is the reason that dispersants are used to break down oil. It is also affected by the presence of other nutrients availability like phosphorus and nitrogen, (Biello, 2010).The use policy of placing moratorium on new Gulf drilling has been criticized. It is a blow that is devastating to the production of energy in America. The addition of six-month moratorium translates into many years of delay as there is stiff competition for drill leases globally. The changes that are proposed in new drilling activity liability may have serious repercussions for the oil firms, (A Chilling Response to Gulf Oil Spill, 2010).The impact of this article on my approach to energy use is that God gave man all the powers over other things on earth; he is expected to use them wisely and take care of the environment. Looking at the damages that oil spill has done to the environment and the effects of petroleum energy on the environment, people should switch to energy sources that are friendly to the environment.

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