US regulators approve sub-sea dispersant for leaking BP oil well

15 May 2010 21:18  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--US regulators will allow BP to use dispersants under the water to help break up the oil leaking from a well in the Gulf of Mexico, officials said on Saturday.

By applying the dispersants near the source of the leak, less material should be required, said Doug Suttles, BP's chief operating officer for exploration and production.

Suttles made his comments during a press conference held at the Shell Robert Training and Conference Center in Robert, Louisiana.

Essentially, the sub-sea dispersants would help prevent the oil from reaching the surface, Suttles said. That, in turn, should require less dispersants.

The US Coast Guard and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had approved BP using the dispersants underwater.

Suttles said BP was relying on two types of dispersants: Corexit, produced by Nalco, and Sea Brat #4, produced by Alabaster, a company based in Pasadena, Texas.

Oil started leaking from the well after a 20 April explosion at the Deepwater Horizon offshore rig, causing it to sink.

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By: Al Greenwood
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