- October 21, 2012
- By: Deborah Dupre
By Friday, over 52,000 gallons of crude oil have been collected out of the Louisiana sinkhole according to officials fingerprinting the crude, but they have yet to identify the source of it or how to stop what a citizen reporter’s in-depth video exposes as a rapidly expanding, out-of-control, ecological disaster unfolding in Bayou Corne and beyond.
Assumption Parish Officials stated Friday in a new report that, according to the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, Texas Brine LLC. has “collected a total of 1242 bbls (cumulative total as of 18 October, 2012) hydrocarbons from well during flow back operations prior to production of brine water.”
The total of 1242 bbls (barrels) is equivalent to 52,290 gallons, according to the Aqua-Calc converter. That is 5000 gallons a day that the company has been collecting as it conducts DNR-ordered operations on their investigatory well.
As of Oct. 18, the company has also flared a total of 323 mcf (million cubic feet) of gas, only during flow-back operations, officials report.
The Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) is testing water well samples and will issue a letter to parish officials once the tests and data reviews are completed.
Despite public concern about the methane bubbling sites percolating as far as 50 miles west of the sinkhole, DHH reports that it has received no new water samples.
“Surface Water at Bubble Sites – No new surface water data received during this operational period,” DHH states in the parish Operational Situation Summary.”
Responding to public questioning about the size of the sinkhole, officials have said that it has not gown, it just looks that way.
“Floating grass that can be seen all along the pipeline right of way was removed (on the direct perimeter of the sinkhole) during clean up effort,” officials stated on their blog Saturday.
Citizen reporters work to provide documentation needed in best interest of the public
Parish officials are attempting to keep locals abreast of the disaster. The parish president Martin Triche has said, “There still is bubbling in the bayou and USGS reports there is seismic activity, so we’re still trying to find out what happened and in the mean time we have a sinkhole so we’re trying to put all the clues together ourselves.”
The local police jury maintains a blog, usually with posts a few times daily. But evacuees and others want and need more, they say at meetings.
As citizens become frustrated over a lack of real-time information from officials and contemporary news sources, more are turning to citizen reporters, such as “Idahopicker.”
This citizen reporter has produced a video documenting that the sinkhole area is subsiding more than official reports indicate, the area appears to have a second sinkhole (denied by officials), and seismic activity is experienced in the area on a regular basis.
Seismic activity has registered on local monitors before major changes in the sinkhole and before the Crosstex flare occurred last week.
(Watch the YouTube video on this page for viewer-friendly documentation of sinkhole-related maps, charts, photos and video clips of methane bubbles, seismic activity and expanding subsidence.)
Citizen reporter Idahopicker also provides the links below, demonstrating the rapid deterioration of the sinkhole area. (He notes that some “reports are No longer Available. Been deleted??”)
“http://climateviewer.com/ Thanks you the man who built this. HERO!
How to read charts: http://www.mgs.md.gov/seismics/help.shtml
More well apps: http://dnr.louisiana.gov/index.cfm?md=pagebuilder&tmp=home&pid=779&am…
Compliance Order: http://dnr.louisiana.gov/assets/OC/BC_All_Updates/BC_TB_COMPLIANCE_ORDER_8_17…
So called “Relief Well Updates: http://dnr.louisiana.gov/assets/OC/BC_All_Updates/DRILLING_OPERATIONS/Oxy_3A_…
Bubble Pic Slide Show: http://www.flickr.com/photos/assumptionoep/sets/72157630330363084/show/
MAP of Bubble Spots found: http://www.edsuite.com/proposals/proposals_280/bubble_map_9-8-12_fi_448.pdf
Map 2 of Bubble Spots found:http://www.edsuite.com/proposals/proposals_280/bubbling_site_17_-_tloc_fi_481…
GEO Probe Locations: http://www.edsuite.com/proposals/proposals_280/geoprobe_map_fi_470.pdf
Overhead Measurements: http://www.edsuite.com/proposals/proposals_280/distance_map091912_fi_465.pdf“
Officials have confirmed that the crude oil that had been covering the giant sinkhole in Assumption Parish, LA was from a massive underground formation(s) of crude oil and gas that officials have said they do not know how to stop.
The 1-mile by 3-mile Napoleonville Salt Dome below the sinkhole contains caverns leased by seven oil and gas industry companies that have injected an estimated 500 billion cubic feet of gas and 200 million gallons of crude oil into the dome’s caverns.
Through fingerprinting, four sources of the leaking hydrocarbons have been ruled out so far, according to DNR in an Oct. 11 state declaration: “Chevron Natural Gas Cavern, Acadian Natural Gas Cavern, Crosstex Butane Caverns, Residual Gas from 2003 Gulf South Blow-out.”
According to that declaration, formations of crude oil and methane (natural gas) are sole sources still publicly discussed for the crude oil and gas surfacing for miles around the sinkhole.
A community meeting with officials is scheduled Tuesday evening this week in Pierre Part.
Sinkhole size 5 football fields, ground breaking far from it
- October 20, 2012
- By: Deborah Dupre
Crews continuing to move hydrocarbons from the breached cavern under the giant sinkhole in Assumption Parish Thursday morning spotted more than shocking chemicals. They also saw that the monstrous sinkhole had grown to 300,000 square feet, approximately the size of five football fields.
Moving hydrocarbons from the inside the cavern under the giant Bayou Corne sinkhole in Assumption Parish continued Thursday morning, according to officials. When those hydrocarbons will be vented or flared, as ordered, remains unknown.
A map of the ever-increasing sinkhole dimensions was uploaded to the Assumption Parish website at 11:45 a.m. ET on Oct. 14.
Since then, photos show signs of the ground breaking up in areas far outside giant sinkhole’s official border.
The sinkhole was first reported on August 3, after two months of locals reporting to officials that there were ongoing earthquakes and odd bubbles percolating in their bayous. Since then, the state government has blamed Houston-based Texas Brine LLC for the quakes, bubbles and the sinkhole. One of the company’s storage caverns in the sinkhole area 1-mile by 3-mile Napoleonville Salt Dome has collapsed and is leaking hydrocarbons into the bottom of the cavern.
It remains unknown whose hydrocarbons are leaking inside the massive salt dome. It also remains unknown whether there is a solution to the insatiable monstrous sinkhole.
The Bayou Corne area is under a mandatory evacuation and the governor has declared a state of emergency.
The future of sinkhole area residents, those who heeded the mandatory evacuation order, those who stayed and those sickened by the chemicals further from the evacuation zone, hangs in the balance. Some are already energy refugees, run out of their home for health and safety, while others face becoming such refugees, victims of another Louisiana oil and gas industry disaster.
In recent years, Louisiana residents have suffered from more oil spilled during Hurricane Katrina than oil spilled in the Exxon-Valdez spill, the largest at the time.
Since April 2010, thousands of south Louisiana residents have been experiencing untold suffering from the BP-wrecked Macondo Well “oil spill” that keeps on spewing.
No Louisiana sinkhole solution
- October 20, 2012
- By: Deborah Dupre
Emergency leaders in Assumption Parish said they saw improvements at the Bayou Corne sinkhole site Friday afternoon in terms of crude-soaked vegetation, but admit there is still no solution or cause of the disaster.
Assumption Parish Office of Emergency Preparedness Director John Boudreaux told WAFB TV News reporter Friday that is clear Texas Brine is making progress with its breached salt dome cavern, but it is unknown how long the company will take to report a cause and a solution to the Bayou Corne sinkhole disaster remains to be seen.
“I tell you, that’s the $50 million question right now,” local business owner Dennis Landry said.
Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) civil engineer who is coordinating the science group studying the sinkhole, Chris Knotts said just over three weeks after the sinkhole appeared that, “If it’s a cavern fracture, failure, whatever, there’s little that you can do.”
La. sinkhole methane caused Minden explosions is possibility physicists say
- October 19, 2012
- By: Deborah Dupre
At least ten powerful explosions Monday night at Camp Minden after a meteor shower have raised many questions, including whether Louisiana’s sinkhole area aquifer explosive-level methane could have traveled north where hit by a meteorite causing the blasts, a possibility according to a physicist and an astrophysicist interviewed by Deborah Dupré Friday. Heavier meteor showers are predicted this weekend.
“If there is enough methane in the air, just about anything (like a rock hitting another rock, causing a spark) could ignite explosions,” physicist Steve Knudsen said in an email Friday.
While some believe Monday night’s explosions could not have been caused by a meteorite because the objects are cold when they reach Earth, Knudsen and chair of West Virginia University Department of Astrophysics Dr. Duncan Lorimer refute that.
“Meteors burn up up but meteorites hit the ground and are hot on impact,” Dr. Lorimer told Dupré Friday in a separate email.
“Depending on the size of the meteor, it would not necessarily be cold by the time it hits the earth,” explained Knuden.
“[O]f course, they have sufficient energy to heat up and burn in the atmosphere, so if there is any methane there then that could happen,” replied Lorimer, after asked if a meteor’s impact on methane in Louisiana could cause an explosion.
The “Camp Minden” explosion was felt in three states, in communities including Lake Bisteneau community that was particularly hard hit by the blasts.
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