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Comment of the day

Commenter Joseph at Econbrowser:

What is disturbing is that we shouldn't have to guess the leak rate [for BP's Deepwater Horizon blowout]. There are lots of instruments that could make the measurements easily but BP has simply chosen not to. BP has also restricted access to videos that could at least provide better estimates. Without good data, scientists can't make good models either for this incident or to evaluate risks for possible future incidents. Whether we like it or not we have the occasion of a unique environmental experiment and we should be taking advantage of it. It is shameful that the Obama administration has totally deferred to BP in the management of information. They should be demanding more transparency and timeliness in release of data and information to scientists.


Those BP execs! They sure are "savvy businessmen"!

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Walter Wit Man's picture
Submitted by Walter Wit Man on

about the government subpoenaing or taking this information from BP then Obama already has a team of lawyers ready to argue the "public danger" exception.

okanogen's picture
Submitted by okanogen on

Given that this is effectively pipe flow (with some caveats), most hydrologists, geologists, hydrogeologists, petroleum geologists, reservoir engineers, etc. would be able to approximate fairly accurately what the flow is, given the size of the borehole (which BP knows and hasen't told), the pressure in the borehole (which they also know and haven't told), and the estimated effective viscosity of the fluid and/or fluid mixtures (which they have a fair idea of, and haven't told). Although that last factor adds considerable uncertainty, still, a reasonably accurate range is possible to determine.

That information has alll been withheld.

See Darcy's Law, Hagen-Poiseuille, Stokes, and Navier-Stokes, all available at your local wiki or elsewhere.