Macondo Well-Deepwater Horizon Blowout examines the causes of the blowout and provides a series of recommendations, for both the oil and gas industry and government regulators, intended to reduce the likelihood and impact of any future losses of well control during offshore drilling. According to this report, companies involved in offshore drilling should take a "system safety" approach to anticipating and managing possible dangers at every level of operation -- from ensuring the integrity of wells to designing blowout preventers that function under all foreseeable conditions-- in order to reduce the risk of another accident as catastrophic as the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill. In addition, an enhanced regulatory approach should combine strong industry safety goals with mandatory oversight at critical points during drilling operations.
Macondo Well-Deepwater Horizon Blowout discusses ultimate responsibility and accountability for well integrity and safety of offshore equipment, formal system safety education and training of personnel engaged in offshore drilling, and guidelines that should be established so that well designs incorporate protection against the various credible risks associated with the drilling and abandonment process. This book will be of interest to professionals in the oil and gas industry, government decision makers, environmental advocacy groups, and others who seek an understanding of the processes involved in order to ensure safety in undertakings of this nature.
Cavnar explains what happened in the Gulf, explores how we arrived at deep water drilling in the first place and then charts a course for how to avoid these disasters in the future.
Two decades ago, British Petroleum, a venerable and storied corporation, was running out of oil reserves. Along came a new CEO of vision and vast ambition, John Browne, who pulled off one of the greatest corporate turnarounds in history.
BP bought one company after another and then relentlessly fired employees and cut costs. It skipped safety procedures, pumped toxic chemicals back into the ground, and let equipment languish, even while Browne claimed a new era of environmentally sustainable business as his own. For a while the strategy worked, making BP one of the most profitable corporations in the world. Then it all began to unravel, in felony convictions for environmental crimes and in one deadly accident after another. Employees and regulators warned that BP’s problems, unfixed, were spinning out of control, that another disaster—bigger and deadlier—was inevitable. Nobody was listening.
Having reported on business and the energy industry for nearly a decade, Abrahm Lustgarten uses interviews with key executives, former government investigators, and whistle-blowers along with his exclusive access to BP’s internal documents and emails to weave a spellbinding investigative narrative of hubris and greed well before the gulf oil spill.
Blending exclusive first-person interviews and penetrating investigative reporting, oil rig captain John Konrad and veteran Washington Post writer Tom Shroder give the definitive, white-knuckled account of the Deepwater Horizon explosion—as well as a riveting insider’s view of the byzantine culture of offshore drilling that made the disaster inevitable. As the world continues to cope with the oil spill’s grim aftermath—with environmental and economic consequences all the more dire in a region still rebuilding from Hurricane Katrina—Konrad and Schroder’s real-time account of the disaster shows us just where things went wrong, and points the way to a safer future for us all.
A suspense story, a mystery, a technological thriller: This is Joel Achenbach’s groundbreaking account of the Deepwater Horizon disaster and what came after. The tragic explosion on the huge drilling rig in April 2010 killed eleven men and triggered an environmental disaster. As a gusher of crude surged into the Gulf’s waters, BP engineers and government scientists—awkwardly teamed in Houston—raced to devise ways to plug the Macondo well.
Achenbach, a veteran reporter for The Washington Post and acclaimed science writer for National Geographic, moves beyond the blame game to tell the gripping story of what it was like, behind the scenes, moment by moment, in the struggle to kill Macondo. Here are the controversies, the miscalculations, the frustrations, and ultimately the technical triumphs of men and women who worked out of sight and around the clock for months to find a way to plug the well.
The Deepwater Horizon disaster was an environmental 9/11. The government did not have the means to solve the problem; only the private sector had the tools, and it didn’t have the right ones as the country became haunted by Macondo’s black plume, which was omnipresent on TV and the Internet. Remotely operated vehicles, the spaceships of the deep, had to perform the challenging technical ma-neuvers on the seafloor. Engineers choreographed this robotic ballet and crammed years of innovation into a single summer. As he describes the drama in Houston, Achenbach probes the government investigation into what went wrong in the deep sea. This was a confounding mystery, an engineering whodunit. The lessons of this tragedy can be applied broadly to all complex enterprises and should make us look more closely at the highly engineered society that surrounds us.
Achenbach has written a cautionary tale that doubles as a technological thriller.