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A summary of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico (Part 1)

The political fallout from the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico trundles on apace, but there has been little media coverage of the spill itself over the last couple of weeks and most of it seems directed at BP CEO Tony Hayward.

Although the Deepwater Horizon blowout preventer has now been capped, it is estimated that at least half the oil from the well is still leaking in the Gulf of Mexico.

BP has faced many challenges since the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded on the 20th of April and two months on they are still facing a serious public, political and media backlash.

We thought we would bring you a synopsis of the developments so far:

20th April

The Deepwater Horizon oil rig explodes due to an oil and gas surge. The blowout preventer valves on the seabed fail and oil starts to leak.

22nd April

The burned out oil rig sinks to the sea bed. Oil and gas continues to leak from the now damaged riser pipe. In response to the ever growing oil slick, booms and oil dispersants are used in an effort to control the spill, as oil continues to leak, skimmers, tugs and aircraft are used, as is controlled burning of surface oil.

2nd May

Relief well drilling starts, early estimates suggest that it will take 3 months to complete.

We will continue our synopsis in the next article.

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