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June 16, 2010



I find it hard to believe that a scientist (whut I'm not) couldn't accurately measure the flow from that pipe. We know the size of the hole, we should know the flow rate of the stream. We also know how long it's been flowing. It seems that it should be a simple mathematical exercise.

Then again, what the hell do I know?

EDITOR'S NOTE: Well, for starters, consider the variables: we don't know the pressure, we don't know the ratio of oil to methane, and we don't know if variability of either is involved.

Now, what we COULD do is set up a pixel-analysis computer program (similar to the H264 codec that security cameras use to detect movement) to analyze the images coming from the underwater camera, and THEN we might get a handle on the variability issues. If we did THAT, then we could narrow the range of our guesswork on the pressure and consistency of the effluent, and maybe make more accurate guesses.

I'm no scientist, either, but I understand the principles involved, and I understand the legal principle that a by-the-gallon fine cannot be applied until we find out how many gallons have escaped from that well.


The amount of the spill is now being reported in gallons almost exclusively rather than in barrels to create a perception that the spill is worse than it is. As you note no one at this time really knows how bad the leak is. If the reports on the effectiveness of the Dutch skimmers are correct the EPA wonks that refused them should be held responsible for criminal stupidity. This whole fricken mess proves once again the .gov is the problem not the solution.

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