This is remarkable. The PR spin that these folks are putting out….and even taking them at their word that the spill is only “modest” – who the fuck are they to say that – it’s OUR environment.
The chief executive of BP has told Sky News he believes the massive Gulf of Mexico oil spill will end up having only a “very, very modest” environmental impact.
Experts had feared the Deepwater Horizon disaster could have led to one of the worst environmental catastrophes in US history.
But the British oil giant has risked outrage along the Gulf Coast by predicting a far smaller impact.
Dr Tony Hayward said: “I think the environmental impact of this disaster is likely to have been very, very modest.
WATCH HIM SAY THIS WITH A STRAIGHT FACE HERE:
“It is impossible to say and we will mount, as part of the aftermath, a very detailed environmental assessment but everything we can see at the moment suggests that the overall environmental impact will be very, very modest.”
BP has begun capturing some of the leaking oil after inserting a suction tube into the fractured riser pipe on the seabed.
BP image shows the main leak at the Deepwater Horizon site (Pic: BP plc)
It is gathering up an estimated one fifth of the oil pumping out of the fractured well.
Dr Hayward said: “Over the last 36 hours we have made a lot of progress on containment on the seabed.
“We have a piece of technology engineering which we have developed and which is now allowing us to produce oil from the leak to the surface.”
The BP chief spoke to Sky News after completing a visit to Florida where he handed over $25m (£17m) to pay for an advertising campaign for the state’s tourism industry.
He appeared upbeat as he met teams at BP’s vast crisis control centre in Houston.
The centre has been working around the clock for more than three weeks trying to identify solutions to the crisis.
The company believes the next stage of its response effort could see the leak sealed completely within seven to 10 days if all goes to plan.
Hearings on continuing into the cause of the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig
It will use a process known as “top kill”, pumping sealing material into the crippled well mechanism in an attempt to seal it once and for all.
The chief executive also dismissed suggestions that the Obama administration has been excessively tough on BP because it is foreign-owned.
He said: “I think there is understandable frustration about the situation and a desire to get it under control.
“I think it somewhat natural that the administration here wishes to demonstrate that they’re on top of it.”
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has cast doubt on claims that scientists had found huge underwater “plumes of oil” in Gulf of Mexico.
NOAA says no definite conclusion can be drawn about “undersea layers”.
BP again promised to pay for the clean-up operation and to compensate those who have lost out financially.
Hearings are continuing in Washington and Louisiana into the cause of the explosion and the failure of equipment which should have prevented the spill.