Representative Joe Barton (R-TX), Energy & Commerce Committee Ranking Member, Excerpts from Tony Hayward's hearing, June 17, 2010:
So could you give us some assessment of why BP and other companies go to such extraordinary measures to drill in these areas?
What is it you think you've found or are hoping to find beneath the Gulf of Mexico? ...
I was told that it was in the order of magnitude of 500 million barrels.
Hayward answered that BP believes there is only 50 million in the blown-out Macondo well drilled by the Deepwater Horizon rig.
On Wednesday's edition of the Situation Room, Wolf Blitzer reported that the reservoir beneath the well may contain 1 billion barrels.
- CNNâ€™s Wolf Blitzer: â€œBillion potential barrels of oilâ€ under BPâ€™s ruptured well; â€œThing could really explodeâ€ expert says.
On Tuesday, Oil insider Matthew Simmons surmised that over 1 billion barrels was beneath the well.
Why is it important how much oil is underneath the blown-out well? See the following links:
- BP says wellbore may be compromised
- Bush Energy Adviser: Relief well will fail, 46 billion gallons could flow into Gulf
- Engineer to Congress: BP â€œhorribly negligentâ€ when completing well
- White House officials: Explosives to stop well may cause â€œuncontrolled situationâ€; Oil may already be escaping into â€œrock formations below the sea floorâ€
- Oil Expert: Only way to shut well off is to â€œlet it complete which might take 30 yearsâ€ or â€œa nuclear deviceâ€; Hurricane will â€œpaint the Gulf Coast blackâ€
- UK Engineering Mag: Well casing could have been ejected from the well; â€˜Doomsday Scenarioâ€™ happening?
- Former Shell Oil President: â€œRelief well may not be enoughâ€, next step â€œto implode well on top of itselfâ€
- Oil Expert: BP must â€˜keep the well flowing to minimize oil and gas going out into the formation on the sideâ€™
- Senator confirms reports that wellbore is pierced; oil seeping from seabed in multiple places
- BP Officials: â€œpart of the subsea safety infrastructure may have rupturedâ€ 1,000 feet beneath oil wellhead.
- Oil Expert: â€˜Well to flow for probably more than a decadeâ€™ if not plugged successfully
- Expert: â€˜Gusher would continue until the well bore hole collapsed or pressure in the reservoir dropped to a point where oil was no longer pushed to the surfaceâ€™
- BP lost control of well one month before blowout
- Blown-out BP well cracked and leaking since February