Gulf Coast Oil Disastor Summary

From the good folks at NRDC
The afternoon summary
National Incident Commander Thad Allen and the BP team are moving slowly toward the final plugging of the Macondo well. On Wednesday, Allen said the final plugging is likely to occur in late August or early September. He said right now BP aims to flush out seabed equipment on the Macondo well and fill it with seawater for a pressure test. “This will be one of the final vital signs that we will need in order to make a determination on how to go forward,” he said. Allen said he cannot predict how many days it will take to complete the test. It’s a clear sign that the engineers are going slowly to make sure they do it right.

Quotable Quote
“It is nothing more than an overabundance of caution and being responsible and doing our jobs,” National Incident Coordinator Thad Allen said Wednesday in announcing another delay.

National headlines

Reuters: ‘Bottom kill’ effort still on hold
BP Plc has more testing ahead before it can finally kill its ruptured Gulf of Mexico oil well, National Incident Commander Thad Allen said Wednesday. He declined to give timelines on upcoming steps, which will likely push the final plugging to late August or early September. Allen said officials may install a pressure venting system on the seabed equipment or swap the failed blowout preventer for another before relief well drilling resumes.

Read more:
http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2010/08/18/news/news-us-oil-spill-allen.html?_r=1&hp

Check this out, too
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703649004575437660657787660.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_MIDDLTopStories

VOA: BP prepares to transfer victims’ fund payout to Feinberg
Wednesday is the last day BP will accept claims from individuals and businesses. After that, the British-based oil giant will direct those affected by the spill to the Gulf Coast Claims Facility, which starts work Monday. And businesses that have not received claim payments will have to file them to the claims process that claims administrator Kenneth Feinberg will be setting up next week.

Read more:
http://www1.voanews.com/english/news/usa/BP-to-Transfer-Claims-to-Independent-Facility-100979364.html

Los Angeles Times: More evidence that toxic oil seeped into marine organisms
Scientists have found evidence that oil has become toxic to marine organisms in a section of the Gulf of Mexico that supports the spawning grounds of commercially important fish species. Researchers from the University of South Florida said Tuesday that, in preliminary results, there appear to be droplets of oil among the sediments of a vital underwater canyon where clouds of oil from the BP spill were found.

Read more:
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-oil-spill-fish-20100818,0,7774739.story

Editorial

Times-Picayune: Time to take care of the Gulf victims
BP’s well is no longer spewing oil into the Gulf of Mexico, but thousands of South Louisiana families are still struggling with the emotional and economic impact of the disaster, the Times-Picayune writes.

Read more:
http://www.nola.com/news/gulf-oil-spill/index.ssf/2010/08/needs_of_oil_spill_victims_sho.html

Regional

Sunherald.com: BP not denying claims, not paying promptly either
BP says the company has not denied claims made for lost income from the Deepwater Horizon oil catastrophe, but the company’s records show 63 percent of Mississippi claims are pending without payment, Attorney General Jim Hood said Tuesday. “It is unfortunate that, despite all its promises about taking care of our residents on the Coast, BP is still holding 6,050 actionable claims,” said Hood, whose office received the claims information late last week from BP.

Read more:
http://www.sunherald.com/2010/08/17/2412445/hood-bp-not-denying-claims-but.html#ixzz0wz1fiN7E

Press-Register: Shrimping reopened off the Florida Panhandle
Florida reopened shrimping in state waters Wednesday off the western tip of the Florida Panhandle that had been closed due to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Read more by Mike Brantley
http://blog.al.com/live/2010/08/florida_reopens_panhandle_stat.html

Press-Register: Feinberg takes an Alabama tour to answer claim questions
The government-appointed claims czar, Ken Feinberg, has planned a Saturday morning tour of coastal Alabama to explain how he will distribute billions of dollars set aside by BP PLC to compensate economic victims of the Gulf oil spill. He’ll be making two stops each in Mobile and Baldwin counties.

Read more:
http://blog.al.com/live/2010/08/oil_claims_czar_plans_saturday.html

Lifeline Live: David Hasselhoff to host “The Gulf is Back” special
The CW Network has just announced it will air The Gulf Is Back, a one-hour special that will pay tribute to the people of Mississippi and the entire Gulf region, on Aug. 27 (8-9 p.m. ET). David Hasselhoff will host the special.

Read more
http://content.usatoday.com/communities/entertainment/post/2010/08/david-hasselhoff-to-host-the-gulf-is-back-special/1

Houston Business Journal: Perry Ellis chips in on Gulf coast spill relief
Designer Perry Ellis has launched a limited edition polo shirt to support Gulf Coast recovery efforts to be sold exclusively on PerryEllis.com. Only a limited edition were made to benefit nonprofits working to clean up the Gulf.

Read more
http://houston.bizjournals.com/houston/blog/2010/08/perry_ellis_chips_in_on_gulf_coast_relief.html

Feature

Press-Register: BP sends out letters without checks
It was insulting. It was maddening. But yes, BP sent out letters to oil spill victims with letters saying the check was there. The problem was that it wasn’t. BP spokesman Ray Melick said that Worley Catastrophe Response, which the oil giant has hired to write claims checks, described the omissions as the “result of systems issues.” BP declined to disclose exactly how many checkless letters were mailed but said it was aware of the mistake “It’s cruel,” said Orange Beach Mayor Tony Kennon. “It shows just how dysfunctional (BP’s) whole process is, and it again counters everything they say about the job they’re doing.”

Read more:
http://blog.al.com/live/2010/08/bp_sends_letters_with_no_check.html

Graphics:

Video of researchers challenging federal data on oil in Gulf
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&rlz=&q=oil%20spill&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbo=u&tbs=nws:1&source=og&sa=N&tab=wn

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