Professor of Mechanical Engineering Estimates that 4 Million Gallons of Oil are Leaking Every Day → Washingtons Blog
Professor of Mechanical Engineering Estimates that 4 Million Gallons of Oil are Leaking Every Day - Washingtons Blog

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Professor of Mechanical Engineering Estimates that 4 Million Gallons of Oil are Leaking Every Day

As I wrote on May 2nd:

The Gulf oil spill is much worse than originally believed.

As the Christian Science Monitor writes:

It's now likely that the actual amount of the oil spill dwarfs the Coast Guard's figure of 5,000 barrels, or 210,000 gallons, a day.

Independent scientists estimate that the renegade wellhead at the bottom of the Gulf could be spewing up to 25,000 barrels a day. If chokeholds on the riser pipe break down further, up to 50,000 barrels a day could be released, according to a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration memo obtained by the Mobile, Ala., Press-Register.

CNN quotes the lead government official responding to the spill - the commandant of the Coast Guard, Admiral Thad Allen - as stating:

If we lost a total well head, it could be 100,000 barrels or more a day.

Indeed, an environmental document filed by the company running the oil drilling rig - BP - estimates the maximum as 162,000 barrels a day:

In an exploration plan and environmental impact analysis filed with the federal government in February 2009, BP said it had the capability to handle a “worst-case scenario” at the Deepwater Horizon site, which the document described as a leak of 162,000 barrels per day from an uncontrolled blowout — 6.8 million gallons each day.

Today, a Purdue University mechanical engineering professor - Steven Wereley - testified to the House Committee on Commerce and Energy that 95,000 barrels a day are currently leaking into the Gulf. That's 3,990,000 gallons - just shy of 4 million gallons - per day.

Professor Wereley is a member of the official Flow Rate Group, tasked with measuring the amount of oil spewing into the Gulf.


  1. Werely testified on the hill today (19MAY10) , and NPR news (ATC) carried the story again as breaking news. Kudos to them for getting this guy some airtime to counter BP's lies and the MSM's complacency. Werely saw some new video from the top of the BOP where the riser bends over and is spewing out and upped his estimate from 75.000 barrels a day to 100k barrels of oil and gas.

    If BP has inserted it's pathetic insertion pipe, why can't they measure from that what the real flow is? One wonders...


  2. Thank you for publicizing these horrible numbers. The government's response is like Katrina all over again, but 100 times worse.

  3. I am so scared. Will we allow the media to continue to suppress this story?


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