Underwater Oil Plumes Definitely from BP Oil Spill
|USF chemical oceanographer David Hollander|
It's official -- the oil plumes USF scientists found deep underwater in the Gulf are definitely from the BP blowout.
USF researchers said Friday they used chemical fingerprints to directly tie the clouds of oil to the Deepwater Horizon disaster.
When USF scientists first discovered the plumes, top BP officials questioned the findings, saying oil should float to the surface. Researchers believe the use of chemical dispersants may explain why oil remains suspended deep underwater.
Researchers have been saying for some time that they believe massive plumes of oil in the Gulf were related to the BP disaster.
According to USF chemical oceanographer David Hollander, extensive water samples tests during a research cruise in late May were compared to samples BP provided last month.
USF chemical oceanographer David Hollander says microscopic droplets of oil were found between 400 and 1,400 meters below the surface. And unlike oil at the surface, it doesn't appear to be going away anytime soon.
“The subsurface oil is not degraded nearly at the rate of surface oil degradation is. There appears to be a lengthy persistence of these molecules in the environment,” he said.
In Hollander's words, their discoveries transform the notion of what an oil spill is.
“It has gone from a two-dimensional disaster to a three-dimensional catastrophe.”
CLICK HERE to listen to Hollander and others explain what they found.
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