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11/6/2010

BP oil spill size is doubled by US experts

Story link: BP oil spill size is doubled by US experts by Kay Murchie
BP oil spill size is doubled by US experts

The latest report on the BP oil spill shows that twice as much oil as previously estimated has been gushing out from the damaged well in the Gulf of Mexico.

The US Geological Survey said as much as 40,000 barrels (1.7 million gallons) of oil a day may have been flowing from the well – doubling many estimates.

US President Barack Obama said he wants to know whose “ass to kick” at BP and British Prime Minister, David Cameron, will speak to the President over the weekend about the handling of the BP disaster.

Speaking during a visit to Afghanistan, Mr Cameron said: “I completely understand the US Government’s frustration. The most important thing is to try to mitigate the effects and get to grips with the problem. It’s something I will discuss with the American president when we next talk”.

The disaster started after an explosion on a BP oil rig on 20 April, which left 11 workers dead.

Two days later, oil began to leak into the Gulf of Mexico from the damaged well and BP has been battling to contain the leak.

The cost of the clean-up and containment efforts had now reached $1.43 billion (£979 million).

BP shares have taken a battering over recent weeks because of the incident and there has been speculation that the oil giant will slash its dividend in order to pay for the costs relating to the disaster.

So far, four US states have been affected by the oil slick – Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.

Earlier this week, officials banned swimming on a six-mile stretch of beaches in north-west Florida and it is feared that tourism could slump by half.

 

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