BP CEO Tony Hayward told a House hearing on “The Role Of BP In The Deepwater Horizon Explosion And Oil Spill”, on Thursday that oil from the leak could flow for up to four more years.
“The oil reservoir that feeds the well and leak still holds about 2 billion gallons of oil, according to the first public estimate Hayward has given of the size of the undersea oil field,” reports CBS news.
“That means the reservoir is believed to still hold 94 percent to 97 percent of its oil. At the current flow rate, it would take from two years to nearly four years for all the oil to be drained from it.”
According to the US government, 60,000 barrels a day are already flowing into the Gulf of Mexico from the leak caused by an explosion on the “Deep Horizon” oil rig on April 20th, leased by BP. But scientists such as Steven Wereley from Purdue University estimate as much as 84,000 barrels could be flowing out.
The oil has already reached the Gulf Stream and the powerful ocean currents that can transport it as far as Canada, the Artic, Europe and eventually around the whole world, causing a catastrophe of unprecedented proportions as fish and sea animals die, and the process of evaporation of sea water to form rain is affected.
In addition, tsunamis of 20 to 80 feet could inundate the Gulf of Mexico coast when enough oil has flowed out of the reservoir to normalize the pressure. At that point, it is believed, sea water will be sucked in to the cavity by the ocean pressure. The water will evaporate to steam at the temperatures of 400 degrees centigrade, which are found in the deep sea rock. The steam will expand in volume and could generate enough pressure to blow the Gulf of Mexico sea bed apart, tiggering gigantic tsumani waves that could reach up to 200 miles inland.