According to the Christian Science Monitor and other news outlets, BP’s third attempt to stem the flow of oil from the Macondo wellhead by pumping copious amounts of drilling mud down the shaft – a.k.a. top kill – has failed.
On Saturday, President Obama issued a statement “While we initially received optimistic reports about the (top kill) procedure, it is now clear that it has not worked. Rear Admiral Mary Landry today directed BP to launch a new procedure whereby the riser pipe will be cut and a containment structure fitted over the leak.”
The danger of course is that once the riser pipe is cut the oil, which is currently flowing out several small breaches, will now be shooting out at a much higher flow. Should the containment structure fail to seat or function, the increased amount of oil being discharged into the Gulf could dwarf anything we’ve seen thus far.