The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Industry Forms Task Forces on Well Control and Spill Response

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted June 10, 2010

The oil and natural gas industry is forming two new task forces to address both short-term and long-term issues involving subsea well control and spill response and cleanup.

The task forces will be developed by API, the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) and the National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) and will provide recommendations which will be presented to the presidential commission on the Deepwater Horizon accident.

"We will be working across our industry, bringing together experts and specialists, to improve safety and environmental performance by learning from any gaps identified in the handling of this spill," said API President and CEO Jack Gerard in a news release.

The findings and recommendations will assist industry to identify best practices to incorporate into future response planning and capabilities.

In other spill-related news today, the Coast Guard has sent a letter to BP giving the company three days to come up with plans for "parallel, continuous and contingency collection processes" to recover oil and gas still flowing into the water from the Macondo well. (The New York Times)

Interestingly, BP released two plans several days ago that appear to address the Coast Guard's request, and the company already is bringing equipment to the Gulf in preparation for deployment.

Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen reported that BP collected 15,000 barrels of oil from the well on Tuesday. Speculation continues on the amount of oil flowing into the Gulf.

In Washington, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar testified before a Senate panel, saying that he expects BP to pay the salaries of energy workers who lose their jobs due to the deepwater drilling moratorium. The Wall Street Journal reports legal experts haven't been able to identify any law or court precedent that would allow the federal government to recover funds for workers who are laid off due to a government-ordered moratorium.

And along the Louisiana coastline, sand will be dredged this weekend to build berms to protect marshes from the spill. About 40 miles of berms will be constructed. (The Wall Street Journal)