AirTalk for May 10, 2010

Oil spill update: new options & environmental impact

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Joe Raedle/Getty Images

A shrimp boat passes through a heavy oil slick as it uses the deployed oil boom and absorption pads to collect the oil from the massive spill on May 5, 2010 in Breton and Chandeleur sounds off the coast of Louisiana. Oil is still leaking out of the Deepwater Horizon wellhead at a estimated rate of 1,000-5,000 barrels a day.

After a failed attempt to stem the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, BP officials are considering several new approaches to stopping the leak. One option would be trying a smaller container than the 100-ton box previously used to contain the spill and funnel oil to tankers on the surface. Other choices include drilling a hole into the broken pipe to draw the oil into a new pipe, or plugging the well head with a rubbery material. It's estimated that almost 4 million to as many as 21 million gallons of oil have spilled into the Gulf of Mexico. Will the latest containment efforts work? How bad will the environmental impact be?

Guests:


John Curry, spokesman for BP at the Joint Incident Command center for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill response in Louisiana

Regan Nelson, senior oceans advocate and marine specialist for Natural Resources Defense Council

Greg Butcher, PhD, Director of Bird Conservation, National Audubon Society


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