BP officials say implemented plan is working - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

BP officials say implemented plan is working


By Jessica Bowman – email

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - While BP engineers are trying to stop the oil from pouring into the gulf, BP representatives spent Thursday afternoon explaining what they were going to do about the oil that's already there.

A select group of Mississippi Senators listened in as BP reps outlined from beginning to end the plan the company is currently implementing in regards to shoreline protection and marine response.

BP Spokesperson Maureen Johnson said the plan is crucial to coastal areas.

"It's fight it off shore, fight it on the sea floor," Johnson said. "Fight in on the beach if we have to."

The responsible party has been reaching out to state and local officials over the past several weeks to discuss in detail the ongoing response to the spill. Johnson said there are two main components within this trigger point plan.

"First of all in Marine Response it references deep water skimming.  We're out there skimming offshore between 50 and 73 miles. We've skimmed about 28,000 barrels of oil, which is a significant amount, roughly 60 miles south of Dauphin Island. That's where the real war is at the moment," Johnson said.

The second focal point is shoreline protection. According to BP, more than 350,000 feet of boom has been deployed in Mississippi waters alone to help protect sensitive areas.

"We expect to get at least 200,000 feet every week for the next several weeks into July at least."

Under this plan there will ultimately be three Shoreline Cleanup and Assessment teams, or SCAT teams. Two teams already exist right now. There is also a rapid response team that is in place. Both SCAT and rapid response teams have been on barrier islands cleaning where oil has been reported.

"The plan is already in place and it's working," Maureen Johnson said.

In addition to the core parts of the plan, the outline also highlights how to deal with wildlife and waste from the oil. However, Johnson said those areas still need to be discussed in more detail with the county officials.

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