Patterico's Pontifications


Testing ‘A Whale’ in the Gulf

Filed under: General — DRJ @ 4:38 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Coast Guard is testing the world’s largest oil skimmer A Whale in the waters near the leaking well in the Gulf:

“The vessel will cruise a 25-square-mile test site through Sunday, according to TMT Shipping, the company that created A Whale by retrofitting an oil tanker after the explosion sent millions of gallons of crude spilling into the Gulf.”

I hope it works.


14 Responses to “Testing ‘A Whale’ in the Gulf”

  1. Yeah, me too. Having turned down the help of 4 similar Dutch ships, all decanting skimmers, you wonder what has taken so long. The stupid 15 ppm EPA rule should have been waved day one. Does anybody believe that half the oil in the Gulf would be better than leaving all the oil in the gulf?

    The EPA has still not waived either the 15 ppm rule or the Jones Act rule ….

    Why can’t pelicans vote on it?

    bill-tb (541ea9)

  2. I hope they have life jackets and fire extinguishers.

    ka (04b86d)

  3. It is amazing that the administration has held back on these opportunities to reduce the damage. Then they hide the damage with sand poured over the oil on the beaches. Why are they doing this ? Is it to punish the states that didn’t vote for him ? The enabling of the MSM is sickening but maybe it will eventually come out. This man cares only for his supporters. He is president of the Democrats

    Mike K (82f374)

  4. “… He is president of the Democrats Progressives.”

    FTFY, Mike.

    AD - RtR/OS! (712fff)

  5. “A Whale is being tested close to the wellhead because officials believe it will be most effective where the oil is thickest rather than closer to shore.””

    This sounds an awful lot like the vessel and the other skimmers would have been much more effective much sooner. I read somewhere that we claimed to have 140 skimmers on the job, but when a congressmen pressed for proof, found out that only 31 were ac tally working.

    I can forgive a certain level of chaotic error if they are trying to get all these assets to do a tough job. But that’s not what’s happening here. For some reason, dozens of major efforts have been paused or stopped or even completely ignored. At least two major issues because of unions needing to profit from the crisis.

    And then there’s the insulting superficial clean up efforts and media embargos.

    It’s hard to swallow the theory that Obama is simply ambivalent or even punishing red states, but he is responsible for this mess being anywhere near this bad.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  6. Mike K:

    It is amazing that the administration has held back on these opportunities to reduce the damage.

    My theory is Obama and everyone around him are so shocked by this oil spill that it reinforced their desire to move America away from fossil fuels. Thus, the more Americans push back — such as by arguing for continued offshore drilling — the more it empowers the Administration to let the spill get worse so Americans will see for themselves why we can’t rely on oil and gas for energy.

    It’s a common reaction by academics who think answers are always clear and risk is always to be avoided.

    DRJ (d43dcd)

  7. Testing? If it does anything at all it’s better than nothing. Obviously the administration is not taking this cleanup seriously.

    kansas (1d82ed)

  8. #6 DRJ:

    It’s a common reaction by academics who think answers are always clear and risk is always to be avoided.

    It may be, and quite probably this Administration is unable to quantify the risk involved in attmepting to use impractical substitutes for oil and gas as energy sources.

    EW1(SG) (edc268)

  9. Pushing the oil companies out to drill in mile deep waters, lax enforcement of regulations and a company that by far is the most egregious offender of safety regulations and sound business practices are all contributors to this situation. Throw a completely inept, incompetent response into the mix, and we have a disaster.

    If the Obami really believe that there are viable alternatives that can provide significant relief from our need for oil in the near term (e.g., the next 20 years) they are even more out of touch than many of us believe them to be.

    GeneralMalaise (9cf017)

  10. As I mentioned on another thread, I think that this is just part-and-parcel with the Cloward-Piven strategy of overwhelming the infrastructure to enable radical change.

    My only concern is as to whether or not we will be able to recognize our “Reichstag Moment”?
    Will we be able to react to that incident that looks to push us past the edge; or, will we not recognize it until it is too late to go back without taking very drastic measures?
    Geez, I hate this poseur!

    AD - RtR/OS! (ed07ac)

  11. Why TEST the A Whale? If it works only half as well as projected, it will pick up more oil than all the other skimmers put together. Even if it does not work at all, it will certainly not worsen the spill, and it is rather difficult to imagine that its owners would have spent all that money to convert the ship if the technology is worthless. It should have been out there scooping all it can scoop ever since it arrived. Oh, and what about those Dutch skimmers offered on day three? In the military we had a term for this sort of inept operation; however, I cannot use it here.

    pmk92 (2105aa)

  12. The Whale has failed and has been removed from the scene as of July 17th.

    Keith (de459e)

  13. It failed because of the large quantity of chemical dispersant being used. Thus, not only was the test inconclusive regarding how the vessel cleans leaking oil, we also don’t know much about the long-term consequences of using these chemicals in the Gulf.

    DRJ (d43dcd)

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