Update: The Ongoing Administration-Wide Response to the Deepwater BP Oil Spill
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Deepwater Horizon Incident
Joint Information Center
Phone: (713) 323-1670
UPDATED July 15, 2010, 7:00 PM
* For a full timeline of the Administration-wide response, visit the White House Blog.
PAST 24 HOURS
Federal Government Closely Monitors BP Well Integrity TestBP began conducting the well integrity test, which is being closely monitored by the federal government. Earlier today, Admiral Allen issued the following statement:
“We’re encouraged by this development, but this isn’t over. Over the next several hours we will continue to collect data and work with the federal science team to analyze this information and perform additional seismic mapping runs in the hopes of gaining a better understanding on the condition of the well bore and options for temporary shut in of the well during a hurricane. It remains likely that we will return to the containment process using this new stacking cap connected to the risers to attempt to collect up to 80,000 barrels of oil per day until the relief well is completed.”
DOI Notifies BP of Liability for Reporting & Royalties on Oil and Gas from Leaking Well
The Department of Interior has informed BP that it must report all oil and gas-related activities at its damaged well and pay royalties on all oil and gas captured from the leaking well. The company also will be liable for royalties on lost or wasted oil and gas if it is determined that negligence or regulatory violations caused or contributed to the Deepwater Horizon explosion and subsequent leak.The Interior Department’s chief oil and gas regulatory official, Director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEM) Michael Bromwich, officially notified BP in a July 15 letter, noting that the company’s failure to fulfill these obligations could be considered a knowing and willful violation of the Federal Oil and Gas Royalty Management Act. For more information, click here.
EPA Officials Continue to Oversee BP’s Waste Management Efforts
Environmental Protection Agency Assistant Administrator of Solid Waste and Emergency Response Mathy Stanislaus visited a waste site in Grand Isle, La., today with representatives from the Sierra Club, Gulf Coast Fund, Gulf Restoration Network and BISCO Environmental.On June 29, the U.S. Coast Guard, in consultation with EPA, issued a directive to BP outlining our expectations for the management of waste and materials collected in the Gulf oil spill response. The directive ensures that BP's waste plans will receive community input, that all of their operations will be fully transparent, and that state and federal authorities will have strong oversight roles throughout the process.
Successful Controlled Burn
Favorable weather conditions allowed responders to conduct a successful controlled burn operation. As part of a coordinated response that combines tactics deployed above water, below water, offshore, and close to coastal areas, controlled burns efficiently remove oil from the open water in an effort to protect shoreline and wildlife. To date, 377 controlled burns have removed nearly 11 million gallons of oil from the water.
Personnel Continue Wildlife Rescue and Recovery Missions Across the Region
From the Houma, La., Incident Command Post, a total of 282 personnel, 85 vessels, five helicopters and two plans participated in reconnaissance and wildlife rescue and recovery missions, responded to reports of oiled and injured wildlife received on the Wildlife Hotline. From the Mobile, Ala., Incident Command Post, 35 two-person teams, 29 support personnel and 11 vessels responded to 24 calls. To report oiled wildlife, call (866) 557-1401.
Approved SBA Economic Injury Assistance Loans Surpass $13.8 Million
SBA has approved 168 economic injury assistance loans to date, totaling more than $13.8 million for small businesses in the Gulf Coast impacted by the BP oil spill. Additionally, the agency has granted deferments on 648 existing SBA disaster loans in the region, totaling more than $3.5 million per month in payments. For information on assistance loans for affected businesses, visit SBA’s Web site at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance, call (800) 659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the hearing impaired), or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Administration Continues to Oversee BP’s Claims Process
The administration will continue to hold the responsible parties accountable for repairing the damage, and repaying Americans who’ve suffered a financial loss as a result of the BP oil spill. To date, 112,254 claims have been opened, from which more than$191 million have been disbursed. No claims have been denied to date. There are 1,101 claims adjusters on the ground. To file a claim, visitwww.bp.com/claims or call BP’s helpline at 1-800-440-0858. Those who have already pursued the BP claims process and are not satisfied with BP’s resolution can call the Coast Guard at (800) 280-7118. Additional information about the BP claims process and all available avenues of assistance can be found at www.disasterassistance.gov.
By the Numbers to Date:
- The administration has authorized the deployment of 17,500 National Guard troops from Gulf Coast states to respond to this crisis; currently, 1,616 active.
- Approximately 45,000 personnel are currently responding to protect the shoreline and wildlife and cleanup vital coastlines.
- More than 6,900 vessels are currently responding on site, including skimmers, tugs, barges, and recovery vessels to assist in containment and cleanup efforts—in addition to dozens of aircraft, remotely operated vehicles, and multiple mobile offshore drilling units.
- More than 3.27 million feet of containment boom and 6.84 million feet of sorbent boom have been deployed to contain the spill—and approximately 855,000 feet of containment boom and 2.68 million feet of sorbent boom are available.
- More than 32.9 million gallons of an oil-water mix have been recovered.
- Approximately 1.84 million gallons of total dispersant have been applied—1.07 million on the surface and 763,000 sub-sea. Approximately 513,000 gallons are available.
- 377 controlled burns have been conducted, efficiently removing a total of more than 10.98 million gallons of oil from the open water in an effort to protect shoreline and wildlife. Because calculations on the volume of oil burned can take more than 48 hours, the reported total volume may not reflect the most recent controlled burns.
- 17 staging areas are in place to protect sensitive shorelines.
- Approximately 581 miles of Gulf Coast shoreline is currently oiled—approximately 333 miles in Louisiana, 109 miles in Mississippi, 68 miles in Alabama, and 71 miles in Florida. These numbers reflect a daily snapshot of shoreline currently experiencing impacts from oil so that planning and field operations can more quickly respond to new impacts; they do not include cumulative impacts to date, or shoreline that has already been cleared.
- Approximately 83,927 square miles of Gulf of Mexico federal waters remain closed to fishing in order to balance economic and public health concerns. More than 65 percent remains open. Details can be found at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/.
- To date, the administration has leveraged assets and skills from numerous foreign countries and international organizations as part of this historic, all-hands-on-deck response, including Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Qatar, Russia, Spain, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, the United Nations’ International Maritime Organization, the European Union's Monitoring and Information Centre, and the European Maritime Safety Agency.
- For information about the response effort, visit www.restorethegulf.gov.
- For specific information about the federal-wide response, visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/deepwater-bp-oil-spill.
- To contact the Deepwater Horizon Joint Information Center, call (985) 902-5231.
- To volunteer, or to report oiled shoreline, call (866) 448-5816. Volunteer opportunities can also be found here.
- To submit your vessel as a vessel of opportunity skimming system, or to submit alternative response technology, services, or products, call 281-366-5511.
- To report oiled wildlife, call (866) 557-1401. Messages will be checked hourly.
- For information about validated environmental air and water sampling results, visit http://www.epa.gov/bpspill.
- For National Park Service updates about potential park closures, resources at risk, and NPS actions to protect vital park space and wildlife, visit http://www.nps.gov/aboutus/oil-spill-response.htm.
- For daily updates on fishing closures, visit http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov.
- To file a claim, or report spill-related damage, call BP’s helpline at (800) 440-0858. A BP fact sheet with additional information is available here. For those who have already pursued the BP claims process and are not satisfied with BP’s resolution, can call the Coast Guard at (800) 280-7118. More information about what types of damages are eligible for compensation under the Oil Pollution Act as well as guidance on procedures to seek that compensation can be found here.
- In addition, www.disasterassistance.gov has been enhanced to provide a one-stop shop for information on how to file a claim with BP and access additional assistance—available in English and Spanish.
- Any members of the press who encounter response personnel restricting their access or violating the media access policy set forth by Admiral Allen should contact the Joint Information Center. Click here for more information, including a list of regular embed opportunities.
- For information about the response effort, visit www.deepwaterhorizonresponse.com.