Saturday, September 25, 2010

NOAA to Look for Oil on Bottom

Gulf Live reported:

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ship Pisces departed Pascagoula on Friday for a two-week mission to collect samples around the Deepwater Horizon wellhead.

U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Paul Zukunft said the Pisces' mission to see what is on the seafloor and the water column. "

"Just as we were very aggressive in our skimming operations, our removal operations, it is just as imperative that we look below the surface and down to depths as great as 5,000 feet," he said.

Whoa!  Aggressive in skimming operations?  Admiral Thad Allen said it took awhile to organize skimming due to forming the Vessels of Opportunity program.  He then held a skimming tutorial without supplying the response's daily skimming capacity.  

It turned out the response didn't skim one day's worth of BP's hedged skimming number.  Zukunft's comment has me worried about the quality of NOAA's work, which follows that of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and University of Georgia.  Let's hope it's not more spin.

Update 10-2-10:  NOAA says sediment on Gulf floor not visibly oiled.

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