June 9, 2010
This video has been available since day 1 and was released on day 50. It shows very clearly how much is spilling and it’s a lot more than anyone has calculated. BP did not provide this video to the Flow Rate Team for their official estimate. That is criminal.
Can see how wide open it is. Tom Foreman gives an excellent visual demonstration. Will have to find the video. HERE.
And yet, where was Energy Secretary Chu? Why didn’t he know this video was available? Why didn’t he notify the WH that BP had shut down their Top Kill procedure for 16 hours. Now in the spirit of “transparency” the Energy Dept has posted the raw data online.
Situation Room – Joe Johns with Sen Nelson
BLITZER: There’s other breaking news we’re following right now — breaking news that could help us better understand how much oil is really spewing into the Gulf of Mexico right now. Experts have had to rely on some murky, grainy pictures of that gusher deep below the water. Now after days and days of asking, we are just getting in some higher quality images of the leak site. Let’s bring in CNN’s Joe Johns. He’s working this story for us. All right. Joe, tell our viewers what we can now see.
JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right. Well, Wolf, these are the high resolution pictures that a lot of people on Capitol Hill including Senator Barbara Boxer of California have been asking for. These were shot June 3, 2010, as we’re told, around 4:30 in the afternoon. It’s quite remarkable compared with some of the other pictures we have seen. We see particles inside this gusher that is going up towards the surface. We see at some points there is an ROV moving around over here. A lot more detail. Why is that important? It’s important because the scientists who are looking at this can determine better by the way the particles go up how fast this is moving and how much oil is actually flowing into the gulf. The question of course is, is there more video like this and why wasn’t it released sooner. Senator Boxer and Senator Bill Nelson of Florida put out a letter just a little while ago which says in part, “BP must not hinder the investigation of this matter by making available only preselected data and/or video for review as we understand has generally been the case to date. If BP delays provision of these videos or only makes available samples of video, the ability of the outside experts to provide truly independent information is undermined.”
With me right now is one of the authors of that letter, Senator Bill Nelson of Florida. Senator, tell us, do you think BP is holding back on this and if so, why?
SEN. BILL NELSON (D), FLORIDA: Remember it was Senator Boxer and me that had to literally almost pull it out of them to get the video released in the first place. This was several, several weeks ago. Now Barbara has gotten them to come up with this. We had never seen this before. Do you think that they have captured most of the oil going into the gulf? 50 percent that they say? When you see this you know it’s clearly not. That’s why Senator Boxer and I wrote this letter today and said we want you to release all of the data so that we can get the scientists to look at it and determine how much is going in and what we have to expect. If this thing isn’t plugged until September, how much do we expect to be sloshing around in the Gulf of Mexico?
JOHNS: Why don’t you trust BP and what would be their motivation for not releasing this information earlier, if you know?
NELSON: Well of course they get fined on per barrel basis. So what did they say? Originally it was 1,000 barrels a day, then they revised that to 5,000, then they said 12,000, then it may be 25,000. Now Senator Boxer and I have reason to believe from some of the members of this technical committee, you look at that let’s get the scientists. Some people are saying that’s as much as 100,000 barrels a day going into the Gulf of Mexico.
JOHNS: When I look at your letter here it’s pretty polite. It doesn’t seem to be a Congressional threat in there. But I guess a question would be if BP doesn’t comply with your request what is the Congress prepared to do? NELSON: Well that’s certainly ought to be the president and the president ought to take over. He can’t take over BP trying to plug the well. They unfortunately, the oil industry is the one that has that technology. And I bet you Joe that changes for the future. Certainly the administration ought to take over and they ought to make sure all these fishermen that are not getting paid, the hotel, motel owners, the restaurant owners, the federal government ought to coordinate and command all of that.
JOHNS: Now I think we also have to make clear that this was after the cut but before the cap went on top. There is presumably much less oil now is actually leaking into the gulf.
NELSON: Well, let’s let the scientists look at this in high definition and give us their estimate. Let’s let them go in with their specific instruments on flow rate and volume and acceleration of that oil coming out and determine exactly how much.
JOHNS: Since BP did provide at least this, do you think that bodes well for future cooperation?
NELSON: I’ve come not to be an optimist on getting information out of BP. So let’s see.
JOHNS: We have reached out to them today by e-mail, folks in the UK as well as in the United States. I, so far, will not have gotten information back from BP or any statement regarding the release of this new high resolution.