Message of the day: Where has all the oil gone?
On Wednesday, a federal interagency team led by the Department of the Interior and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released a report detailing the fate of the estimated 4.9 million barrels of oil that was released in conjunction with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The findings from this report were developed using the Oil Budget Calculator. This tool used both direct measurements and scientific estimates to determine the disposition of the oil at this point in time.
Wednesday’s interagency report estimated that through direct recovery efforts, including burning, skimming and in-situ removal, twenty-five percent (25%) of the oil released by the wellhead has been removed from Gulf of Mexico waters. Another twenty-five percent (25%) either naturally dissolved or evaporated into the environment. Twenty-four percent (24%) of the oil was dispersed, either naturally or as a result of operations, as microscopic droplets into the water. The remaining portion of the oil, twenty-six percent (26%), is still on or in the water as sheen and weathered tar products, is ashore or has been collected from shore or is buried in sediments. Currently, oil that has been dispersed or is in the residual category is being actively degraded through natural processes. Learn more.
· The State Emergency Operations Center is activated at Level 1 or full activation.
· The State continues to focus on mitigating impacts to Florida’s shoreline.
· As part of the static kill procedure, BP has been authorized by the National Incident Commander to begin cementing operations on the well. Cementing operations are anticipated to begin on Thursday. Learn more.
· No new oil has been discharged from the Deepwater Horizon well since July 15.
· State reconnaissance teams operating by air, land and sea continue to identify potential impacts and are actively coordinating with cleanup teams. View the latest reconnaissance reports.
· Although sporadic sightings of tar balls may continue, Florida’s shoreline is not expected to receive additional impacts over the next 72 hours.
· The remnant tropical wave of former Tropical Storm Colin, located a few hundred miles north of the Virgin Islands, is getting better organized and there is a 50% chance that Colin could regain tropical storm status later today or on Friday as it moves northwest around 20mph. Hurricane Hunter aircraft will investigate the system this afternoon. A tropical wave over western Caribbean Sea remains very disorganized and there is only a 10% chance of development through the next 2 days before it moves inland over Central America.
· Oil Impact Notices are posted for all Escambia County and Walton County Gulf beaches, as well as designated beaches in Okaloosa County. Signs may remain in place until local authorities determine that beaches are no longer impacted by the oil spill. Learn more.
· The coastal state waters previously closed to the harvest of saltwater fish were reopened on July 31. The area will remain closed to the harvest of shrimp and crabs pending additional testing. Learn more.
Learn More About Florida’s Response:
· Visit www.deepwaterhorizonflorida.com to learn more about Florida’s response to the Deepwater Horizon incident, sign up for daily updates, view tips for businesses and consumers, find a listing of Unified Command, BP and Florida phone numbers, and more.
· The Oil Spill Information Line is available at 1-888-337-3569 from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. seven days a week. Persons with disabilities can contact 1-800-955-8771 (TDD) or 1-800-955-8770 (voice).