“A tanker loaded with 1 million barrels of Venezuelan heavy crude has been stranded for over a month off the coast of Louisiana, not because it can’t sail but as a result of Venezuela’s imploding economy, and its inability to obtain a bank letter of credit to deliver its expensive cargo. . . . “
” . . . it has come to light that the oil industry is conducting offshore fracking in the Gulf, which is even more dangerous than conventional oil drilling, according to the Center for Biological Diversity.”
“2017 could be an “above-normal” year for large hurricanes, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a potential problem for Gulf Coast oil drillers and refiners.”
The Advocate – Report: Major figure in Katrina aftermath says no FEMA, NOAA leaders at start of hurricane season ‘should scare hell out of everybody’
“. . . Trump appointed former Alabama Emergency Management Agency Director Brock Long to lead FEMA in late April, but the Senate has not yet confirmed the selection, CNN reported. Trump has not appointed anyone to the NOAA position.”
Pipeline drilling accident burns for 45 years in Turkmenistan (!)
A picture taken on May 3, 2014, shows people visiting “The Gateway to Hell,” a huge burning gas crater in the heart of Turkmenistan’s Karakum desert. The fiery pit was the result of a simple miscalculation by Soviet scientists in 1971 after their boring equipment suddenly drilled through into an underground cavern and a deep sinkhole formed. Fearing that the crater would emit poisonous gases, the scientists took the decision to set it alight, thinking that the gas would burn out quickly. More than 45 years later, the flames are still burning, which gives some indication of Turkmenistan’s vast gas reserves.
A well operated by BP Exploration Alaska Inc. on Alaska’s frigid North Slope is no longer spraying crude oil after leaks were discovered Friday morning.
The well, located in the Greater Prudhoe Bay area, was venting gas, which caused a spray of crude oil to impact the well pad. By Sunday afternoon in Alaska, that had been stopped. A second leak had been reduced but was still emitting gas, the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation said in a statement. Well pressure was monitored throughout the night and excess pressure was bled off to keep it within a safe range. . . .
In some sectors of the economy, accidents frequently occur and employees are put at risk. Fortunately, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration exists to protect workers in the U.S. and penalize corporations when they put their workforce in danger. OSHA’s mission is to “assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance.”
Still, OSHA cannot prevent every accident — explosions and falling equipment, along with freak accidents, cause fatalities annually. FindTheCompany, a corporate data site by Graphiq, found the companies with the most serious safety violations using data from OSHA’s safety inspection records. The data experts at FindTheCompany calculated the total financial penalty for a given inspection to determine the severity of the company’s violations. In the case of ties, the company with the greater number of citations is ranked higher. For context, Find The Company also included the total number of citations associated with each violation.
British oil giant BP is a repeat offender, receiving heavy penalties on numerous occasions. Because OSHA’s jurisdiction does not extend to offshore oil rigs, this list does not even include BP’s $4.5 billion settlement resulting from the Deepwater Horizon tragedy which killed 11 people in 2010. Other than oil companies, construction corporations and large factories producing aluminum, steel, automobiles and wheat have committed expensive safety violations.