A nearby drilling rig, the Ocean Saratoga, has been leaking since at least April 30, according to a federal document.It is troubling of the hush-hush nature surrounding this second spill but I think it also highlights the problems with offshore drilling, and more importantly a problem with current offshore regulation and management. I still support drilling but I believe there needs to be some serious reform before drilling is expanded.
While the leak is decidedly smaller than the Deepwater Horizon spill, a 10-mile-long slick emanating from the Ocean Saratoga is visible from space in multiple images gathered by Skytruth.org, which monitors environmental problems using satellites.
Federal officials did not immediately respond when asked about the size of the leak, how long it had been flowing, or whether it was possible to plug it.
Skytruth first reported the leak on its website on May 15. Federal officials mentioned it in the May 1 trajectory map for the Deepwater Horizon spill, stating that oil from the Ocean Saratoga spill might also be washing ashore in Louisiana.
The only other mention the Press-Register was able to find of the spill in federal documents occurred in a May 17 transcript of a U.S. Coast Guard media conference. In that transcript, Admiral Mary Landry said that she was unaware there was another drilling rig leaking oil in the Gulf.
Officials with Diamond Offshore, which owns the drilling rig, said that they could not comment on the ongoing spill and referred the Press-Register to well owner Taylor Energy Co., which hired Diamond. Taylor Energy officials did not return calls seeking comment.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Second Oil Spill?
Ben Raines from The Alabama Press-Register has reported on a second oil spill near the Deepwater Horizon rig.