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Earth Science

New Batfish Species Found Under Gulf Oil Spill 226

Posted by timothy
from the had-to-flush-'em-out-somehow dept.
eDarwin writes "Researchers have discovered two previously unknown species of bottom-dwelling fish in the Gulf of Mexico, living right in the area affected by the BP oil spill. Researchers identified new species of pancake batfishes, a flat fish rarely seen because of the dark depths they favor. They are named for the clumsy way they 'walk' along the sea bottom, like a bat crawling."
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New Batfish Species Found Under Gulf Oil Spill

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  • by h4rr4r (612664) on Thursday July 08, 2010 @04:54PM (#32844494)

    What are the odds we found out more about them just as they get wipped out?

    How is BP going to fix this?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:12PM (#32844672)
    Also, these recently discovered species are now extinct. Thanks BP.
  • by Bakkster (1529253) <Bakkster.man@gm a i l . com> on Thursday July 08, 2010 @05:26PM (#32844778)

    I mean seriously, what did this guy do or fail to do?

    Lead and instill a culture of safety and accountability in a company with a history of dangerous cost cutting.

    He also produced some of the most incredible PR gaffes in recent memory. It's easy to hate someone when they're wholly unlikeable.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 08, 2010 @06:20PM (#32845322)

    It's easier to make these things about villians and heros than it is to delve into the sticky and complicated issues as they exist in the real world. Check out this article [independent.co.uk] for some interesting facts about the rig,

    There were 126 people working on the Deepwater Horizon rig, yet no more than eight of them were BP employees. Some 79 worked for Transocean, the firm that owned and operated the rig. A further 41 worked for contractors such as Anadarko Petroleum Corp, a BP partner on the well. BP had 65 per cent of it, Anadarko 25 per cent and Mitsui Oil Exploration 10 per cent. There was also a firm called M-I Swaco, a contractor providing mud-engineering services on the rig, two of whose workers were among the 11 killed. Halliburton, Dick Cheney's former company, had four staff on the rig, and was responsible for "cementing" on the sea bed. Another firm, ironically called Cameron International, supplied the rig's blowout preventer valves, which, as it happened, prevented no such thing.

    Further, the New York Times ran a great story [nytimes.com] examining the technology at work. It makes for some head-smack-inducing reading. It includes such gems as
     

    blowout preventers used by deepwater rigs had a “failure” rate of 45 percent.

    BP and other oil companies helped finance a study early this year arguing that blowout preventer pressure tests conducted every 14 days should be stretched out to every 35 days. The industry estimated the change could save $193 million a year in lost productivity. The study found that blowout preventers almost always passed the required government tests — there were only 62 failures out of nearly 90,000 tests conducted over several years — but it also raised questions about the effectiveness of these tests.

    As with BP, the rig’s owner, Transocean, was aware of the vulnerabilities and limitations of blowout preventers.
    But they were not the only ones.
    The Minerals Management Service knew the problems, too. In fact, the agency helped pay for many of the studies that warned of their shortcomings, including those in 2002 and 2004 that raised doubts about the ability of blind shear rams to cut pipe under real-world conditions.

    approved BP’s permit without requiring proof that its blowout preventer could shear pipe and seal a well 5,000 feet down...Mr. Patton said he had approved hundreds of other well permits in the gulf without requiring this proof, and BP likewise contends that companies have never been asked to furnish this proof on drilling applications.

    As part of its assessment of the blowout preventer, Transocean hired West Engineering, which had a checklist of more than 250 components and systems to examine. It did not perform 72 of them, mostly for a simple reason: at the time, the Deepwater Horizon was operating in the Gulf of Mexico, and the blowout preventer was on the seafloor and therefore inaccessible.

    According to a West Engineering document, one of those 72 items was verifying that the blowout preventer could shear drill pipe and seal off wells in deepwater. This checkup appears to be the last time an independent expert was asked to perform a comprehensive examination of the Deepwater Horizon’s blowout preventer.

    The list goes on and on, a litany of errors from everyone involved.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 09, 2010 @12:21AM (#32847550)

    Couldn't the limited liability of a corporation be insurance sold by banks, instead of as a cost implicitly underwritten by society?

    What, and give banks even more money, power and influence than they already have?

    You're kidding, right?

    How about this: We revoke corporate citizenship, completely, first, in the US, as an implicit part of incorporation, and reclaim, proclaim, citizenship as the sole province of individual human beings, once and for all, and return "limited liability" to the internal financial operations of the corporations?

    Once done, and the ability of corporations to influence government via huge amounts of money is eliminated as a side-effect, we then insist that corporate officers be held personally responsible for the decisions that they make on behalf of their companies that have detrimental effects on everyone outside their companies. They can keep the limited financial responsibility with regards to internal finances, certainly, can keep their stock options, golden parachutes, etc., but once they start fucking around with the rest of us, all bets are off.

    The problem with incorporation isn't itself, per se - it's that it's been expanded from limited, internal financial responsibility to "it's OK for me, as CxO, to do whatever the fuck I want, have my company do whatever the fuck makes us money, regardless of anything other than profit, and I'll never have to answer for it personally, regardless of who gets hurt, who dies, the effect on anyone or anything else in the world, so long as my company continues to make money, and so will pay for the battery of lawyers needed to tie up any such actions in court for the rest of my life."

    In short, it's about personal responsibility, and that's what is missing, has been missing, for so very long in the US.

    And, certainly, it's not universal (or at least, I'd like to think that it isn't), but it IS growing, and rapidly becoming the norm, almost expected. THAT is bad.

    But, the good news is this: All of you reading this have, by definition, access to information, knowledge, that you can use to make things better, albeit slowly. It's taken almost 100 years for the US to get this messed up, and it's going to take time to fix it, but YOU can.

    WE can.

    You can't trust the politicians, the corporations, to do it for you: You already know that they don't serve your best interests - you've seen it, continue to see it.

    But, the Internet changes everything: I truly believe that. It spans the world, and you are part of it, and by extension, you are part of the world in a way that has never been possible before. Political power, corporate power, is by necessity concentrated, insulated, isolated, though exercised externally. The Internet now surrounds it all, it's part of our society, our culture, and CAN be used to break the hold that so few have over us... which leads me to this caveat:

    "You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant."
    - Harlan Ellison

    You have at your disposal, without effort, access to more knowledge and information now than any of those of us that have preceded you, and such is growing every day. More, you have, by the same means, the ability to talk about what you learn, share what you know, and listen and learn from others all over the world.

    In short, there's no longer any reason for any of you to be ignorant, save by choice, especially about the things that effect us all. And so, there's no reason for you, once informed, to not act upon your informed opinions, in the real world, and work to make it better, regardless of the failures of the past, save for apathy, laziness or selfishness.

    So many of you enjoy access to something that I deem so wondrous, take it for granted, treat it as a mere replacement for TV or radio.

    It's more than that, far more - but it's true potential can only be realized by you.

God is real, unless declared integer.

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