Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Case Study

Topics: Petroleum, Exxon Valdez oil spill, Oil well Pages: 1 (2105 words) Published: February 8, 2015
CASE STUDY: THE CAUSE AND THE EFFECTS OF THE DEEPWATER HORIZON OIL SPILL

ENEE 501 – POLLUTION PREVENTION AND CONTROL FOR THE ENERGY INDUSTRY

HARJOT BHANDAL

10106493

TABLE OF CONTENTS

ABTRACT3
INTRODUCTION3
BACKGROUND3
ANALYSIS5
CAUSE OF THE EXPLOSION5
ENVORNMENTAL EFFECTS6
ECONOMIC EFFECT7
CONCLUSION8
REFERENCES9

ABSTRACT
On the 20th of April 2010, a tragic event occurred just off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. British Petroleum’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded resulting in millions of gallons of crude oil to be spilled into the ocean. Previously the Exxon Valdez spill was considered the largest U.S. oil spill but was surpassed by the Deepwater Horizon spill within just a few days of the explosion. Due to poor reaction time by BP, a company that prides itself on its commitment to safety, this spill quickly became one of the largest in history. In this paper we will aim to assess what caused the rig to explode and the effect that the spill had on the environment. INTRODUCTION

The Deepwater Horizon (D.H.) oil spill is considered the largest marine oil spill to occur in U.S. waters in history. On April 20th, 2010 British Petroleum’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig was subject to an explosion which killed 11 workers and injured 17 others. The ruptured pipeline went uncontained for a total of 87 days releasing approximately 210 million gallons of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The main reason for this case study is to investigate the cause of the disaster and the effects it had on the ecosystem of the Gulf. In this paper we will consider sources that determined the cause of the explosion and sources that documented the environmental effect. BACKGROUND

A drilling rig is a machine that is used to create holes in the earths subsurface to allow for wells to be placed for the extraction of many resources. In the case of the Deepwater Horizon rig it was a...

References: 1. Carolyn, C. (2010, July 2). Los Angeles Times. http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-oil-spill-html-htmlstory.html
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3. Bea, R. (2010, May 20). Failures of the Deepwater Horizon Semi-Submersible Drilling Unit. http://www.eoearth.org/files/154601_154700/154669/dhsg_deepwaterbobbeaprelimanalysesrev52.pdf
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5. Elley, T. (2010, May 14). What caused the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon?. http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2010/05/spil-m14.html
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7. Huffington Post. (2013, April 25). Corexit, Oil Dispersant Used By BP, Is Destroying Gulf Marine Life, Scientists Say. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/25/corexit-bp-oil-dispersant_n_3157080.html
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9. Walsh, B. (2010, May 1). With Oil Spill (and Blame) Spreading, Obama Will Visit Gulf. http://content.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1986323,00.html
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