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20 years

hen the Deepwater Horizon oil rig and platform sank to the floor of the Gulf of Mexico between April 20 when the initial explosion and fire resulted, and April 22 when the platform sank, a thousand bloggers began searching for answers since those who actually had the answers simply weren't—and still haven't—confided the truth of what happened on April 20. As the blogsphere demanded answers, the mainstream media seemed content to wait until the Obama Administration, British Petroleum, BP Exploration & Production Co. (BPXP) and Anadarko Petroleum Corporation which co-owned the lease on the Macondo MC252 (Block 252, Mississippi Canyon area on the US continental shelf in the Gulf of Mexico) created a story that sounded plausible to those who choose to believe the "news that's fit to print" in the New York Times or the equally sanitized version prepared by media censors for the electronic news.

Sometimes the truth is just a little bit too scary for the evening news because if the whole truth was aired there would be a whole lot of Washington politicians and bureaucrats run out of town on a rail. And the American people wouldn't be waiting for an election to send them packing. This appears to be one of those times. Too bad the constitutionally-free press no longer works. When they bought the politicians, the federal judges and the mainstream media, the princes of industry and barons of banking and business apparently also bought the Constitution of the United States because it no longer protects the people it was designed to protect from those its founders feared most—the very central government it was creating . That was, after all, the reason for the Bill of Rights—to protect the people from its government.

For that reason, if the unvarnished truth of why the Deepwater Horizon tragedy happened had been told, the American people would have been shocked to learn that the Soviet Union, which has been drilling super wells deep into the Earth's crust for 5 decades, used nuclear devises five times to stop petrocalamities caused by penetrating the magma with the same type of catastrophic consequences BP is experiencing in the Gulf of Mexico.

In early May, 2010 Komsomoloskaya Pravda, the former official voice of the Soviet government reported that the Russians used nuclear devises 5 times to seal catastrophic fissures in the magma caused by well drillers. Two explosions were used to seal oil wells and three to seal natural gas wells. Only one attempt failed. It occurred in 1979, and was the last time the Soviets used a nuclear device to stop an oil or gas leak. It failed. The gas well was located near Kharkov, Ukraine. The nuclear devise did not seal the leak. In the article, which was also reported in The Moscow Times, Pravda said with an 80% success rate "...the chances of failure in the Gulf of Mexico are 20%. The Americans could certainly risk it." (Note: with all my digging I could not find any additional articles or information on whether or not the Soviet government ultimately sealed the leak, or if the well simply extinguished itself sometime during the last 31 years, or if it's still burning.)

With the most important daily newspaper in Russia suggesting the United States should detonate a nuclear devise 43 miles from the coast of Louisiana not one mainstream American newspaper, large or small, conservative or liberal, reported Pravda's suggestion. CNN didn't carry the story. Neither did MSNBC. Nor did ABC, CBS, NBC nor most of all, did "fair and balanced" Fox News.

You'd figure a savvy radio-TV talk show commentator like Bill O'Reilly would be haranguing Pravda, reminding them that in a Republic, the government can't arbitrarily detonate a nuclear devise that had the potential to convert coastal cities in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida into American versions of Hiroshima and Nagasaki or, perhaps, do nothing more than rain radioactive rain on coastal America. And, the new king of talk radio-TV, Glenn Beck should have had a blackboard full of pithy reasons why we can't detonate a nuclear devise less than 50 miles from population areas in the United States. The video shown here is believed to be the Uzbekistan Urtabulak gas well that had been burning 10 million cubic meters of natural gas a day for three years. The video shows how successful the Soviets were in sealing catastrophic oil and gas leaks.

In 1963 gas well drillers punctured a batholith or magma chamber in the Urtabulak gas field well below 30,000 feet. Some reporters speculated that the super well may have been as deep as 50,000 feet or more. That's almost 10 miles deep if true. Think of going to the deepest spot in the Mariana Trench and then drilling a well three miles deep. Batholiths are from 10 thousand to 50 thousand or more feet thick depending on the area of the Earth they are located, and whether or not there are magma chambers within them. The same type of explosion that initially rocked the Deepwater Horizon platform and then, the second thud which engulfed it in a ball of flames that came up through the pipeline, was similar to what happened with the Uzbekistan gas well in 1963, which was on land. The distinction here is that the BP oil well, as you know, was under 5,000 feet of water.

Something else you may not realize about the Deepwater Horizon well at the time of the explosion. It was not an active drilling site which suggests BP had not punctured the magma layer, but stopped short of penetrating the substrata that has now become the world's worst environmental disaster. Macondo MC252 was a successful drill. Drilling was completed on April 17, three days before the explosion.

The well was sealed with cement to be reopened at some later time when BP and its partner, Anadarko Petroleum, wanted to activate the well. (A side thought: if there was an oil shortage in the world, oil companies would not spend millions of dollars to sink a major well and then seal it without harvesting even an eye dropper of oil.) At the same time, something else also happened. "Drilling mud," used to equalize the pressure of the drilling reservoir was halted when the well was capped and cemented. When Transocean Ltd. (the driller), stopped equalizing the pressure in the substrata, pressure quickly built to a catastrophic level. On April 20, the well blew. The first "thud" experienced on Deepwater Horizon was the cap blowing. The second thud was likely the result of a giant plume of gas with the force the fist of God slamming the platform. That is what caused the catastrophic explosion that killed 11 workers and injured 17 others. Ninety-eight others survived without serious injury.

BP was obligated to file a exploration and environmental impact study for the Macondo well with the Mineral Management Services which handles all mineral lease sales. The impact study was submitted in February, 2009. Those with access to the files in the MMS looking for evidence of wrongdoing on the part of BP have worn out the impact study looking for the smoking gun. The impact study specifies precisely how the well on Macondo MC252 was to be drilled, cased, cemented and completed based the proprietary data that only those privileged to the datastream in the impact study could see. In other words, the fact that BP was drilling a superwell in the Gulf of Mexico was not public information. However, the Obama Administration knew it. Obama's chief-of-staff, Rahm Emanuel, probably convinced his boss that the owner of his rent-free DC apartment, BP, knew what they were doing and did not need to be scrutinized too closely by the MMS. Obama, who received $77,051 from BP in 2008 and a 20-year total estimated to be around $750 thousand from BP PAC groups, probably agreed. (Note: Emanuel's theoretic "landlords" are former Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro [D-CT] and her husband, Stanley Greenberg who also leased the apartment rent-free. Greenberg's PR consulting firm was the architect of BP's rebranding as a green petroleum company.) Today, BP is the wrong color of green. It looks sludge gray. Emanuel and Obama's relationship with BP makes it look like there was absolutely no environmental oversight of BP in the Gulf of Mexico. But then, everyone has already figured that one out. It shouldn't surprise me when those who talk the toughest against the oil barons turn out to always be those in bed with them since the environmentalists were largely financed by the oil barons whom the environmentalists lobbied against.

Deepwater Horizon is an ultra-deepwater semi-submersible offshore drilling rig that was built by Hyundai in South Korea in 2001. Owned by Transocean, the platform is registered and flagged in Majuro, Marshall Islands (an American possession) and leased to British Petroleum. The lease ran until 2013. Deepwater Horizon was the jackpot oil rig for BP until April 20.

In Sept., 2009 Deepwater Horizon drilled the deepest underwater oil well in history (or rather, I should say, in recorded history since we don't know who else is drilling super wells, and what levels they reached). The well was drilled in the Tiber Oil Field, Keathley Canyon Block 102. The Deepwater Horizon drill depth was 10.643 miles (9,384 feet under the seabed). If this discussion does nothing else, it proves one thing: the heads of the Seven Sisters are liars. (This comment is for the benefit of the fossil fuel advocates who believe its okay for the oil barons to gouge consumers by promoting the myth that oil is a fossil fuel, and as such, that it is a rapidly depleting finite resource. It proves it because the Seven Sisters are drilling super deep wells, and Exxon-Mobil the flagship company of the Standard Oil dynasty partnered with China Oil in the world's biggest IPO. Their lease? The seabed under the Marianas Trench Marine US National Monument.) The IPO covers 335,561 square miles of some of the deepest water in the world. The oil field under those seabeds contain more oil than every known oil reserve on Earth combined. To make deep sea super wells profitable, the Seven Sisters needed to get, and keep, the price of crude over $200 per barrel.

It's important to understand that even though the Seven Sisters are drilling deep wells, they are not pumping the oil they discover. The minute they strike oil or natural gas, they shut the wells down and cap them. And, the consumers in the industrialized nations are paying the freight by footing the bill for what should be easy-to-reach $20 per barrel Mideast oil for $77 (in June) when it reaches the gas pumps at the local filling station, or when it's converted to home heating oil, fuel for factories or for power plants.

In 1972, crude oil was $3 per barrel. In 2008, oil skyrocketed to $148 as the oil industry attempted to push oil past $200 by having oil company hedge funds bid up the oil futures based on Seven Sister claims that the world was now well past peak oil (over half of all of the remaining oil on Earth was depleted) and cheap oil was now a memory of the past. Known and/or capped oil reserves will supply all of this planet's oil current and estimated oil needs for the next ten centuries. In ANWR (the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge) alone, excluding the balance of the State of Alaska, the known oil reserves will supply all of the needs of the United States for 300 years. The 310 super-deep wells drilled by Russia since their first super well in 1970 when the Russians drilled Kola SG-3 which reached a world record of 40,230 feet has made Russia the world's leading oil producer. Russia has sunk three super wells in Vietnam.

In the race for the most valuable commodity on Earth, the Russians were the first to realize the world was not running out of oil, or at least, they chose not to play the oil company fossil fuel game of pretending the world was running out of oil. They decided to let the oil barons play the game and set the price, and they would profit from it by drilling more oil than the Arab world.

They were not threatened by what the Seven Sisters have, for almost a century, termed "peak oil"—a rapidly depleting resource which is now over half gone, and with a tenfold demand for oil, will be completely gone within a couple of decades. By promoting the myth that oil was created from prehistoric fossils and fauna, the oil barons could, without being figuratively lynched, justify quadrupling prices already raised tenfold. The truth is that while it appears at first glance that many of the wells drilled several decades ago have "dried up," most of them were capped and forgotten or ignored because environmentalists in the United States made it cost prohibitive for well owners to open shutdown wells and begin pumping crude. Add to that the fact that the environmentalists, with the help of the Seven Sisters who do not want competition that would undercut their prices and restore a sense of competition in the oil industry, closed every independent oil refinery in the United States. By doing that, and refusing to refine the oil drilled by wildcat drillers, the Seven Sisters control the price of oil by creating manufactured shortages.

On September 30, 1966 at a super well in the Urtabulak as field in southern Uzbekistan the Soviets had the first of five Deepwater Horizon experiences—on dry land. They were drilling a 40, 000 foot super well that fractured the magma with a massive explosion that created a massive flaming natural gas fountain which shot skyward at a pressure equal to 300 atmospheres, burning some 12 million cubic meters of gas per day that shot skyward. The loss of natural gas was equal to that which would be needed to heat and light a major urban city per day.

Oil, however, is created in the bowels of the Earth. Not only is oil not a finite resource, the planet replenishes the oil we consume. It takes a little time, but oil is created deep in the bowels of the planet. Unfortunately, it does not replenish itself as fast as the oil companies would like, or as fast as we use it now that the princes of industry are building fossil fuel factories in all of the emerging nations, and the demand for fuel for factories and gasoline for the increased demand for cars and heating oil for homes, has taxed the ability of oil barons to increase oil production. And, of course, they don't want to. Because the demand for oil is so great today, oil companies can't wait for the oil to seep up through the mantle of the Earth into pools and many times, virtual lakes of oil between the mantle and the crust of the Earth.

To reiterate, because this is important, the reality is that the oil and gas shortages we periodically experience come not from shortages of crude oil to be refined into gasoline or heating oil, but a deliberate lack of refineries to refine that oil into the products we use. These engineered shortages are fanned in the media by TV talking heads reciting memorized talking points that suggest the shortages are due to an increasing dwindling supply of oil which we hear, over and over again, is the result of the fact that have passed "peak oil." If enough people believe the world is running out of oil, then no one demands that Congress enact "oil gouging" legislation by reopening every closed oil refinery in the United States and leasing them for $1 per year to the independent oil companies who have been run out of business because the refineries owned by the Seven Sisters would not refine their oil, ultimately running them out of business. Without competition from independent drillers and refiners, the oil company hedge funds can bid up the future prices of their own product at will. Strangely, when the futures markets bids up the price of oil for the next quarter, the price of gasoline at the pump rises the same day. In a world of free competition without the Muslim-Chinese-Russian controlled international oil cartel that arbitrarily controls the global price of crude, many times as a weapon used against the industrialized nations, we are at the mercy of the greediest men in the world who are building the financial fortress that has given them the power to rule those who rule the world.

That is the sole reason the free press, the 4th estate—whether print or electronic—does not report the news the way it happens, but spins the news to fit the views of those who control the news that is "fit to print" or broadcast. That's why when a civilian scientist for the US Marine Corps, Franz Gayl, advocated using America's most powerful non-nuclear bomb in the US arsenal on the wellhead, you didn't see or hear that story on ABC, CBS, NBC-TV or radio, nor did you see on the evening news on CNN, Fox News or MSNBC. When Gayl proposed using a modified version of the Air Force's GBU-43B Massive Ordnance Air Blast [MOAB] bomb, referred to as the "mother of all bombs" on May 10, the story slipped through the cracks at the networks. Wonder why? If you recall, this was the "shock and awe" GPS-guided bomb the military wanted to use against Saddam to bring an early end of the Iraqi War. Bush-43 dropped the bomb in an isolated area to share Saddam, but the weapon has never been used in combat.

A Wall Street Journal blogger, Nathan Hodge, wrote the piece for Washington Wire on June 10, noting that a USMC scientist proposed a novel solution to sealing the Gulf leak. Drop a huge bomb on it. To be precise, the non-nuclear "Mother of all Bombs." Apparently Hodge has never seen the video on Russia's first attempt to successfully seal a super well leak

The scientist, Gayl has been knocking on Congressional doors with a Power Point presentation showing how the non-nuclear Mother of All Bombs might cauterize the leak without catastrophic consequences. But, it doesn't appear he's found too many politicians willing to risk their careers to pull BP's bacon out of the fire—or, if you will, out of the oil. According to Gayl's presentation—modeled after the Soviet's four successful super well closures—the heat and massive shock wave caused by detonating the GBU-43B would seal the drill hole and the fissure. And, he claims, the massive underwater pressure at that level under the seabed floor would contain the blast. (Gayl, if you recall, was the whistle-blower in 2007 who criticized the military bureaucracy for not buying mine resistant vehicles for use in Iraq.) The military, due to pressure applied by voters on Congressmen and Senators, are now being used in both Iraq and Afghanistan. But that does not make Gayl a popular figure in Washington. In fact, it pretty much makes him persona non grata in every Congressional office on the Hill. Which in this case, is probably good. Because its not likely the GBU-43B, which uses only shock and not nuclear heat, would likely not generate the heat needed to seal the fissure in the mantra of the Earth after the shock wave moves the subterranean base and theoretically sealing the bore hole. MOAB works on the same principle as the Daisy Cutter, which most Americans have seen in action in Afghanistan. Again, its a concussion devise and not a heat explosive. The only positive thing you can say about the GBU-43B with respect to Gayl's idea is that it is designed to work underwater. I'm not quite sure it will work under 5,000 feet of water since its GPS guidance system must remain in contact with the signal from the satellite on its way to the seabed floor. If sunlight has trouble penetrating 5,000 feet of water, will sound?

In the end, if the military—authorized by the White House—uses a bomb to stop the Gulf oil leak before the Gulf of Mexico is renamed the Great Oil Sea, what is going to be placed on the drawing room table will have be a low yield nuclear bomb about the size of the one-and-a-half kiloton bomb that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And, of course, no one in the room will talk about the discussion that took place there when they leave the building. And, that's a decision no occupant of the Oval Office will be willing to make since this detonation will be 43 miles from the coastline of Louisiana. Since its a career-ender for anyone who makes the decision, we are about to see more indecision than we saw during the Carter years. He gave away the Panana Canal two decades after he left office, placing the blame for the giveway on another Democrat, Bill Clinton. That's how its done in Washington. Post-date the blame. Let history blame someone other than the guilty.

I think its time for the White House to seek counsel from its friendly-enemies and allies in Europe. Not the 13 nations who offered to help (unless they've had success sealing leaks in superwells), but from the former Soviet Union which is the only nation to successfully seal 4 out of five super wells. I suspect the GBU-43B MOAB, which is a percussion bomb, will merely make the matter worse. I suspect the blast of the shock wave, instead of sealing the leak could instead fracture the seabed of the Gulf of Mexico even more, creating a fissure that could extend the leak from Louisiana to the Yucatan Peninsula.

Serious minds already understand this is a catastrophic problem that is going to require a catastrophic solution. But, before irreversible decisions are made, the best scientific minds in those 13 nations and the scientists who made the hard decisions in Soviet Union need to sit down and look at the seabed and the fault lines, and look at both the best case and worst case scenarios—and then take decisive action. But remember this: in the five attempts the Soviets made to seal magma leaks, only four were successful. And, all of them were wells on dry land. One last thing...if you live along the Gulf coast of the United States, and your home is threatened with foreclosure, I think I'd walk away from the mortgage and move inland at least 100 miles.

 

 

Just Say No
Copyright 2009 Jon Christian Ryter.
All rights reserved
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