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The EPA rejected Dutch skimmers because they don't clean the water to its 99.9985% purity standards

If the US government accepted the skimmers the Netherlands offered three days after the initial well explosion, there would be no environmental disaster right now. A big thank you to Ace for bringing this Financial Post article to my attention. It's called "Avertible catastrophe" and it illustrates how dangerous and inept the EPA is.

Created by Richard Nixon, the EPA was originally tasked with protecting human health and the environment but it has become a cancer itself. Rather than protecting the environment, it now exists for the sole purpose of forcing everyone to conform to its draconian regulations no matter how devastating the consequences may be to the environment.

In sharp contrast to Dutch preparedness before the fact and the Dutch instinct to dive into action once an emergency becomes apparent, witness the American reaction to the Dutch offer of help. The U.S. government responded with "Thanks but no thanks," remarked Visser, despite BP's desire to bring in the Dutch equipment and despite the no-lose nature of the Dutch offer --the Dutch government offered the use of its equipment at no charge. Even after the U.S. refused, the Dutch kept their vessels on standby, hoping the Americans would come round. By May 5, the U.S. had not come round. To the contrary, the U.S. had also turned down offers of help from 12 other governments, most of them with superior expertise and equipment --unlike the U.S., Europe has robust fleets of Oil Spill Response Vessels that sail circles around their make-shift U.S. counterparts.

Why does neither the U.S. government nor U.S. energy companies have on hand the cleanup technology available in Europe? Ironically, the superior European technology runs afoul of U.S. environmental rules. The voracious Dutch vessels, for example, continuously suck up vast quantities of oily water, extract most of the oil and then spit overboard vast quantities of nearly oil-free water. Nearly oil-free isn't good enough for the U.S. regulators, who have a standard of 15 parts per million -- if water isn't at least 99.9985% pure, it may not be returned to the Gulf of Mexico.

When ships in U.S. waters take in oil-contaminated water, they are forced to store it. As U.S. Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen, the official in charge of the clean-up operation, explained in a press briefing on June 11, "We have skimmed, to date, about 18 million gallons of oily water--the oil has to be decanted from that [and] our yield is usually somewhere around 10% or 15% on that." In other words, U.S. ships have mostly been removing water from the Gulf, requiring them to make up to 10 times as many trips to storage facilities where they off-load their oil-water mixture, an approach Koops calls "crazy."

The Americans, overwhelmed by the catastrophic consequences of the BP spill, finally relented and took the Dutch up on their offer -- but only partly. Because the U.S. didn't want Dutch ships working the Gulf, the U.S. airlifted the Dutch equipment to the Gulf and then retrofitted it to U.S. vessels. And rather than have experienced Dutch crews immediately operate the oil-skimming equipment, to appease labour unions the U.S. postponed the clean-up operation to allow U.S. crews to be trained.

A catastrophe that could have been averted is now playing out. With oil increasingly reaching the Gulf coast, the emergency construction of sand berns to minimize the damage is imperative. Again, the U.S. government priority is on U.S. jobs, with the Dutch asked to train American workers rather than to build the berns. According to Floris Van Hovell, a spokesman for the Dutch embassy in Washington, Dutch dredging ships could complete the berms in Louisiana twice as fast as the U.S. companies awarded the work. "Given the fact that there is so much oil on a daily basis coming in, you do not have that much time to protect the marshlands," he says, perplexed that the U.S. government could be so focussed on side issues with the entire Gulf Coast hanging in the balance."

I don't know how America gets out of the Obama administration alive.


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Comments (33)

The Dutch aren't allowed. B... (Below threshold)

The Dutch aren't allowed. But if you fly under the good ship China pop, then by all means blow BP'S PIPELINE. ( UNDERCUT THE COMPETITION ) Right BarryAlGore?

Something stinks in D.C. and its not Chewie. Well, maybe a bit. They did this on purpose.

Maybe Obama should start re... (Below threshold)

Maybe Obama should start receiving quarts of oil in the mail.

Doesn't clean to their sta... (Below threshold)

Doesn't clean to their standards, yeah better to not clean at all then to fail to meet the guide lines. Common sense has left the world and all we have left is stupidity and down right corruption.

The President and his croni... (Below threshold)
Stephen H.:

The President and his cronies ought to be held for Treason acts against this Country. What they have done so far is reprehensible to say the least. At least they should be charged with criminal acts of negligence and sued till their are as moneyless as the people that they have put out of work.

"The EPA rejected ... (Below threshold)

"The EPA rejected Dutch skimmers because they don't clean the water to its 99.9985% purity standards"

Shit!! That's at least 5.745632% cleaner than the swill I consume 2 gallons a day!

Maybe I should venture down to the golf region and get me some Cheney omega oil, with darkside supplementals so I can feel better about the Obama lie.

well at least the libs are ... (Below threshold)
jim m:

well at least the libs are consistent. They said we shouldn't depose Saddam Hussein because we wouldn't depose all evil dictators.

Their answer is if you can do it to an absurd ideological standard, don't so it at all.

Let the iraqi's be murdered by the 100,000's. Let the gulf shores be polluted and millions of animals destroyed.

"The EPA ... (Below threshold)

"The EPA rejected Dutch skimmers because they don't clean the water to its 99.9985% purity standards"

Oh, I see, They are trying to make it 100% Obama proof? The dutch failed to meet Barry's 100% failure cutoff criteria. In other words... Affirmative action can only carry you so far..Than, You gotta prove something beyond big ears and unicorns.

They even are making clean ... (Below threshold)

They even are making clean air standards lower than pre-industrialization levels in many parts of the country.

The water in the gulf the ... (Below threshold)

The water in the gulf the oil spill probably didn't meet the EPA's purity standards.

Lemme try again. The water ... (Below threshold)

Lemme try again. The water in the gulf BEFORE the oil spill probably didn't meet the EPA's purity standards.

The phrase "epic fail" keep... (Below threshold)

The phrase "epic fail" keeps coming to mind. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Now was not the time to send junior to the adult table.

It's Bush's fault.... (Below threshold)

It's Bush's fault.

Typically stupid!!!!!!!!!!!... (Below threshold)

Typically stupid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"I don't know how Americ... (Below threshold)

"I don't know how America gets out of the Obama administration alive."

We will manage. It's going to hurt like hell (as if it hasn't already...) and be expensive as anything for us and our children - but we will manage... and with any luck at all learn the lesson that a slick manner and completely uncritical media support might be able to get someone elected - but that's the end of the EASY part.

Everywhere you look there i... (Below threshold)
Adrian Browne:

Everywhere you look there is another clue in The Great Gulf Oil Gusher Conspiracy of 2010.

"The Great Gulf Oil Gush... (Below threshold)

"The Great Gulf Oil Gusher Conspiracy of 2010"?

Remind me again about how competent and capable a leader Obama was supposed to be? How he'd be able to easily handle complex issues because of his experience as a community organizer?

You wont see this in the MS... (Below threshold)
retired military:

You wont see this in the MSM. That is how they get away with it. Willing complicit partners.

Everywhere you look there i... (Below threshold)

Everywhere you look there is more evidence that Adriane is a complete fool.

perplexed that the U.S. ... (Below threshold)

perplexed that the U.S. government could be so focussed on side issues with the entire Gulf Coast hanging in the balance.

Somebody hasn't been paying attention...I mean you'd have to really be trying to avoid noticing the, uh, "competency" and intentions of the people being talked about to be "perplexed" by it.

Adrian: You are starting t... (Below threshold)

Adrian: You are starting to look more like Lee, so:

Conservatives were for oily birds before there was a black President.


well, personally, I'd like ... (Below threshold)

well, personally, I'd like to thank Obama and by extension, the enviro-whackos in the EPA for essentially removing the word "Katrina" from our political lexicon.

Speaking of Lee - did he ge... (Below threshold)

Speaking of Lee - did he get Bananinated at long last? Or did he just get tired of spinning his wheels in his racist slime?

/sighTo quote Jame... (Below threshold)


To quote James Carville (Not my favorite person)
"We're dyin' down here" because some pencil geek wants the water to be cleaner than tap water we drink now.

I would personally settle for having 95% of the oil removed as the other 5% would be removed by natural action.

"We're from the government and we're here to help" is not a phrase a lot of the people on the coast think is very true at this point and less so by the day.

Luck for us that Barry has ... (Below threshold)

Luck for us that Barry has been focused "laser-like" on the oil spill since Day 1.

I think this has more to to... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

I think this has more to to with the American idea of exceptionalism, going it alone, than whether the Dems or Republican are in power (and aren´t the Dutch among the socialist of countries). Don't foreign friendly countries with good intentions ever learn. A similar scenario occurred with Katrina.

U.S. didn't use most foreign Katrina aid

Much of the problem, according to the documents, rested with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which was already overwhelmed trying to coordinate the U.S response to Katrina and couldn't decide what offers of foreign aid to accept and reject.

Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., chair of the Disaster Recovery Subcommittee, promised to ask hard questions of administration officials about the foreign aid problems.

"Louisiana and the Gulf Coast deserve better," Landrieu said. "And while we did not seek handouts, a hand up was and remains sorely needed." She promised to "get to the bottom of how this administration could so foolishly turn away an outreached hand in a time of such desperate need."


The real problem here is th... (Below threshold)

The real problem here is that the EPA has it's head up Obama's ass so far they are giving him tongue.
Seems that 99.9985% purity is the EPA standard for bilge water (water onboard a ship that may contain water, oil, urine, detergents, solvents, chemicals, pitch, particles, and so forth) to be reintroduced into a natural body of water.
What this means is in order to use a 99% (in relative terms) efficient skimmer, the water would have to be 98.998515% pure to start.
This is the ultimate "Catch 22″ ... once you suck up any sea water that contains any pollutant (like say BP crude oil), EPA regulations say you can't put it back .. because it is "bilge".
Any sane person would think that if it is purer than the water pulled from the ocean, it would be safe to go back ... but not the EPA. It must be 99.9985% (in absolute terms) pure.
It must take a special kind of stupid to work for the EPA.

EPA is not the problem.... (Below threshold)

EPA is not the problem.

Collection of the BP oil spill has never been a "skimming" operation. This "spill" is a gusher of oil being released from the seafloor, approximately one-mile below the sea surface. USCG is using conventional skimmers, boom and dispersants normally deployed for inland waterway surface oil spills.

BP and USCG will eventually use tankers to collect the oil that has been released into the Gulf of Mexico as a result of the Deepwater Horizon blowout of April 20, 2010. Unfortunately, this decision will be made after the devastation of many coastal communities.

Since May 17, 2010, Renergie, Inc. has submitted unsolicited proposals for the purpose of using three Panamax class crude tankers for the collection and onboard separation of the BP oil spill to every federal agency, state agency, state elected official and federal elected official with even a remote interest in the BP oil spill. These tankers are capable of collecting and separating both surface oil and the underwater plumes of oil.

The USCG response to Renergie's proposal stated, "Unfortunately, the Coast Guard does not currently have a mission and is not hiring contractors. However, if BP requests names, I will recommend and forward your company."

The blowout of April 20, 2010 aboard the Deepwater Horizon was clearly preventable. The fact that the BP oil spill has been allowed to reach coastal areas is inexcusable.

For a clear understanding of the issues involved, visit:






What's truly ironic here is... (Below threshold)
Tsar Nicholas II:

What's truly ironic here is that lunatic-liberal "environmentalists" won't even be able to figure out the irony.

"Luck for us that Barry ... (Below threshold)

"Luck for us that Barry has been focused "laser-like" on the oil spill since Day 1."

Yes, now that Barry has taken care of plugging that god forsaken hole that he unplugged he can get on to the peoples business, like making sure ACORN count's alah the dead, evoking 'I blame Bush' in the appropriate forum and holder ing a Beer Summitt in honor of the hangmeister himself Robert KKK "sheets' Byrd tyrd.

crickmore - "I think ... (Below threshold)

crickmore - "I think this has more to to with the American idea of exceptionalism, going it alone, than whether the Dems or Republican are in power"

And you think obummer believes in American exceptionalism?


Marc, he probably doesn't r... (Below threshold)
Streve Crickmore:

Marc, he probably doesn't really, but he expects America to expect he does, so he believes in it.

Off-topic, but American exceptionalism can cover or cover up some sins too. Evidently, in practice, Obama is still allowing somthing like this at Bagram, the CIA interrogation black site in Afghanistan, as the UK Conservative Government gets ready to set-up an open judicial inquiry on alleged torture complicity by their M16 in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Maybe Obama should start re... (Below threshold)

Maybe Obama should start receiving quarts of oil in the mail.

2. Posted by davidt | June 29, 2010 11:57 PM

Or been suggested to me, golf tees. Cheaper postage, non-hazardous.

Sounds like alot of people ... (Below threshold)
Shala Adams:

Sounds like alot of people actually think that the president HAS power. He's only there to let Americans THINK that they have a choice and a voice. He is a puppet. THEY tell him what to say and sign. Money and greed drive all. Point your finger at the big 5. (the 5 top world companies) Then, look at your own life and see where and how these monsters have implicated themselves in it. See how much of your own hard earned money has gone directly to them. Just think of what it'll be like when the world is burnt and destroyed and all these same people will be living on the shiny space station. Making money off of water and food because all the oil has been ruined by the ocean!






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