A Louisiana newspaper is reporting that a new oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico has been traced back to a Houston-based oil company.
The Times-Picayune broke the story that state agents had traced the oil back to a well operated by Anglo-Suisse Offshore Partners, and just hours later the company put out a statement acknowledging their responsibility.
According to Nola.com, “Anglo-Suisse also accepted responsibility for cleanup, even though the statement also said company officials were surprised by the Coast Guard’s ‘suggestion’ because the well is ‘non-producing and has been monitored closely for the last six months.’”
Over the weekend, several people said they saw a dark cloud of oil spreading through the water near the Louisiana coastline, but the Coast Guard and state officials intially dismissed these observations, saying the plumes were caused by mud and silt in the water from dredging operations near the mouth of the Mississippi River.
New reports show that the leaky well is one the company was plugging for permanent abandonment, in the West Delta Block 117 west-southwest of Southwest Pass.
Although the sheen is at least five miles wide, Coast Guard officials claim that only 1/4 to 1/2 of a mile of beach was directly affected by oily material. So far, both the company and the Coast Guard claim that less than 5 gallons of oil were spilled.
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