Gulf Oil Spill Getting Larger

Highlights:

-Oil leak may be closer to 70,000 barrels a day
-U.S. said to allow drilling without permits
– Poll: Oil tops terror in public attention

Oil spill: Spill just gets bigger

National Public Radio broke a story late Thursday about the oil spill catastrophe that is chilling. The volume of oil pouring into the Gulf of Mexico from the Deepwater Horizon oil rig may be at least 10 times higher than previously estimated. The U.S. Coast Guard has estimated that oil was gushing from a broken pipe on the Gulf floor at the rate of 5,000 barrels a day. But a sophisticated scientific analysis of the sea floor video made available Wednesday by the oil company BP shows that the true figure could be closer to 70,000 barrels a day. BP is working on ways to stop the leak. U.S. officials and scientists are working non-stop, too. But if the leak is not slowed anytime soon, we will be experiencing a catastrophe far greater than the Exxon Valdez and far more costly and catastrophic. Environmentalists and opponents of oil drilling have been warning us about this for years. Where are we to turn now? And how are we to get a handle on this situation?

National News

NPR: Gulf spill could be much worse

The biggest news of the day Thursday is nothing short of ominous. Scientists tell NPR that the broken well in the Gulf could be gushing more than ten times greater an amount than originally estimated by the Coast Guard., For more than three weeks, disaster officials thought they were beating back a spill of 5,000 barrels a day. Using sophisticated measurements based on the videos that were finally released by BP on Wednesday, scientists believe the flow could be as much as 70,000 barrels a day. Even the most conservative estimates put it at more than 20,000 barrels a day. In other words, this spill has already far exceeded the Exxon Valdez disaster of 250,000 barrels unleashed on the environment, and the end is nowhere in sight.

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