Divers have found at least three damaged pipelines on the ocean floor in the Gulf of Mexico about two miles off Port Fourchon, Louisiana, that may be responsible for a 14-mile-long oil slick that appeared there after Hurricane Ida. The spill was so large that NOAA took pictures of it from space.
The Coast Guard and other agencies have been monitoring the oil spill and they report that the rate of new oil flowing to the surface has slowed dramatically. Originally, the Coast Guard said it did not know where the oil was coming from.
Talos Energy Inc., a Houston-based oil and gave exploration company that had pipelines in the area, hired Clean Gulf Associates to work with the Coast Guard and respond to the spill, although it said that none of its pipelines were involved. Talos sent two 95-foot response boats to the scene.
Talos paid for divers and reported that a 12-inch pipeline was “displaced from its original trench location, which appears to be bent and open ended.” Talos did not own that pipeline, or two others that appeared to be leaking.
Clean Gulf Associates is running skimmers in the area to reduce the spill’s environmental impact. Lt. John Edwards, a Coast Guard spokesman, said that once the source of the leak is determined, the Coast Guard will work on a recovery and control plan.
Meanwhile, the Coast Guard captain-of-the-port New Orleans has opened the Lower Mississippi to traffic in New Orleans and other major ports in Southeast Louisiana. Several powerlines obstructing the river near mile maker 106 had been removed.
Even though the waterways are open for traffic, the Coast Guard warns that shoaling, storm debris and other hazards may still exist. And aids to navigation may be damaged or missing. Read more: