Oil Spill? Kevin Costner To The Rescue!

VictorB

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Gulf oil spill: Kevin Costner donates 'Ocean Therapy' invention to clean oil from sea; BP OK's tests

Could there be a Hollywood ending to the Gulf oil spill?

Enter "Waterworld" star Kevin Costner, who has invented a device that cleans oil from sea water.

British Petroleum - desperate for ideas - gave the okay to test six of Costner's gizmos Wednesday, after the Army Corps of Engineers gave the machine a thumbs-up.

Costner's $24 million centrifuge machine has a Los Angeles-perfect name, "Ocean Therapy."

Placed on a barge, it sucks in oily water, separates out the oil and spits back clean water.

"It's like a big vacuum cleaner," said Costner's business partner, Louisiana trial lawyer John Houghtaling.

The "Field of Dreams" star told reporters he started paying a team of scientists millions to create the device after the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, while working on his epic 1995 flop "Waterworld."

"I'm just really happy that the light of day has come to this," Costner said.

"It's prepared to go out and solve problems, not talk about them."

Costner's has 300 machines in various sizes, with the largest able to clean water at a rate of 200 gallons a minute, WDSU-TV reported.

A minimum of 210,000 gallons of oil per day is gushing into the sea from the well that exploded April 20. BP has tried several novel ways to stop the leak, but none have worked so far.

Meanwhile, the 50 or so tar balls that washed up this week in the Floriday Keys are not from the BP spill in the Gulf, the Coast Guard announced Wednesday, temporarily calming tourism jitters.

Oil from the spill is being drawn into the Gulf Stream, prompting fears that the slick could threaten the Sunshine State's tourist industry.

But if the oil is coming to Florida, it hasn't arrived yet.

"The results of those tests conclusively show that the tar balls collected from Florida Keys beaches do not match the type of oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico," the Coast Guard said in a statement.

"The source of the tar balls remains unknown at this time."
 

Rich

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Might as well give it a try. Lord knows those GOP shitheads blocking the cost that oil companies are responsible for aren't coming up with any ideas other than leaving it up to all of us to suck up the costs, just like the banks.
 

Makeitstop

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I think Costner's a little batty, but you gotta hand it to a guy who ponies up $24 mil of his own dough to try to find a solution.

I realize that to a lot of people here Costner is a 'Hollywood elitist' and that's inherently bad :rolleyes:, but at least he's willing to put his money where his mouth is.

- D
 

geochem1st

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Oil water separators are good ideas and have been used in environmental remediation projects that I have worked on.

The problem is collecting the oil in the first place. A good amount of it is below the surface now.
 

twinrider1

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Wow. I opened this thread fully expecting to crap on Costner as another Hollywood blowhard with no grasp on reality.

My apologies to Costner. I hope it can be effective.
 

Caleb

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Might as well give it a try. Lord knows those GOP shitheads blocking the cost that oil companies are responsible for aren't coming up with any ideas other than leaving it up to all of us to suck up the costs, just like the banks.

Hmmm, GOP shitheads? I wasn't aware they controlled the White House and both houses of Congress right now.:hmm:
 

KP

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Hmmm, GOP shitheads? I wasn't aware they controlled the White House and both houses of Congress right now.:hmm:

I guess we both did not get that memo. :hmm: :rolleyes:
 

txbruno

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Costner has been involved in this for years. Here is an article from 2003:

The Offshore Technology Conference at Reliant Center is an endless maze of booths with thousands of companies and subsidiaries represented.

Each booth vies for the attention of passers-by with giveaways like pens and candy.

But Booth No. 2269 offered Kevin Costner, and it was mobbed.

Women froze in their tracks.

"Oh, my God. That is Tin Cup," one said.

Costner's appearance was not some company stunt. He is the company -- the driving force behind Costner Industries Texas, whose product, the liquid-liquid centrifugal separator, separates oil from water and was designed to clean up major oil spills.

Costner, who said he has sunk almost $15 million into the 9-year-old business, was joined by three of his associates at the conference.

Costner said he invested millions he's made from movies into Costner Industries Texas, or CIT, because of his longtime dream to find a way to minimize damage from oil spills.

He obtained the license for his product, which was developed 30 years ago, from the U.S. Department of Energy in 1993.

A liquid-liquid centrifugal separator spins fluids very fast, and the centrifugal force from the spinning motion causes oil and water to separate.

CIT's product is a simple device that is efficient and easy to maintain, according to Chuck Harrison, the company's director of field management. The equipment performs separation, extraction and washing functions, and has applications to other industries, including food, pharmaceutical, mining and printing.

So far, the company has installed hundreds of its machines for companies outside the oil industry and has just begun to push into the oil market, Harrison said.

CIT has not yet had the opportunity to clean up a big oil spill, but Harrison said he is confident of the product's effectiveness.

Until recently, the company was based in Carson City, Nev., and was called Costner Industries Nevada Corp.

Over the past year or so, the company changed its name, moved its headquarters to Houston and brought in a new management team.

Costner has majority ownership of the privately held business but is not involved in its daily operations.

He founded the company with his brother, Dan Costner, who is no longer involved. He has since brought on Joe Bradford as president and chief executive officer, and venture capitalist Rod Lake as chairman of the board.

Costner and Lake have been friends since age 18 and have been partners in other investments, including a bank.

Lake has invested in two of Costner's movies, Dances With Wolves and The Bodyguard, "the two that made the most money," he noted.

An Academy-Award winning actor, Costner has a strong entrepreneurial bent.

For years, he said, he has been trying to develop a resort in South Dakota, but so far has had little luck finding investors.

Yet to show a profit, his CIT is a major financial risk, Costner said, but so was the decision to go into acting.
 

Caleb

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Cue corporate apologists in 3..2..1... :laugh2:

- D

Not a corporate apologist at all.

On another note, I do know this about the GOP: If they were running the show right now, they'd be getting their way. Look at that as good or bad. I don't know where the Dems balls are.
 

Makeitstop

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Not a corporate apologist at all.

On another note, I do know this about the GOP: If they were running the show right now, they'd be getting their way. Look at that as good or bad. I don't know where the Dems balls are.

Not directed at you.

We do have a few of them on this forum, though. Not mentioning any names, though. :laugh2:

I do get the feeling that the liability cap will be raised pretty significantly at the end of the day, though.

- D
 

CenCalPlayer

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Not directed at you.

We do have a few of them on this forum, though. Not mentioning any names, though. :laugh2:

I do get the feeling that the liability cap will be raised pretty significantly at the end of the day, though.

- D

Agree with you on this one...It should be raised in cases like this.....the finger pointing really pissed me off.....if something is screwed up, then the company has a responsibility to get it fixed....

I was also ticked that the Feds have done about two point squat to help in this matter.....not a big government fan, but in cases like this all resources should have been made available to the companies trying to shut this well down as it affects the whole Gulf Coast and potentially the Eastern seaboard.....Congress having "hearings" isn't solving shit....lets stop the bleeding first, then the toads in DC can start running up their political opportunity stunts....

I love the GOP bashing though, while BO and his cronies are at Wall Street fund raisers collecting big bucks themselves....both parties have their hands out way too much.....
 

Makeitstop

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Agree with you on this one...It should be raised in cases like this.....the finger pointing really pissed me off.....if something is screwed up, then the company has a responsibility to get it fixed....

Yep. BP and Halliburton should be made to pay every cent of the cleanup

I love the GOP bashing though.....

I only bashed corporate apologists. Gently. :D

- D
 

KSG_Standard

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Stranger...can you explain what the raising of the liability limits would do, or not do? Do you think Imhofe and the other evil GOPers are just trying to protect BP and the other evil corporations? Please explain the deal to me....after all if Senator Menendez introduced the legislation, it MUST be good...right?
 

Makeitstop

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Stranger...can you explain what the raising of the liability limits would do, or not do? Do you think Imhofe and the other evil GOPers are just trying to protect BP and the other evil corporations? Please explain the deal to me....after all if Senator Menendez introduced the legislation, it MUST be good...right?

I think Imhofe doesn't have two brain cells to rub together and thinks obstructing something a Democrat has proposed is a good thing, honestly.

I want BP and Halliburton liable for every red cent of damage that this causes, and I don't want their lawyers to be able to negotiate them out of paying for the damage they caused.

As for your baiting in the rest of the post - sorry, not gonna bite. :D

Oh, and why not ask CenCalPlayer the same loaded questions? He seems to agree with me on making BP fix what they broke.

- D
 

KSG_Standard

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Senate panel plans hearing on offshore spill liability limits - Oil & Gas Journal

WASHINGTON, DC, May 20 -- US senators continued to raise questions about the adequacy of offshore crude oil spill liability limits as the Energy and Natural Resources Committee announced that its next hearing on May 25 will address the issue.

The committee’s ranking minority member, Lisa Murkowski (R-Alas.), applauded the May 18 announcement by Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) that the hearing would address offshore oil spill liability limits. Mischaracterizations of what these liability limits are show that the Senate needs to better understand how these complex legal and statutory provisions interact, she suggested.

Current state and federal law provides for a limit on strict liability, liability without limit for cleanup, and unlimited liability for compensatory and economic damages, according to Murkowski. The strict liability cap under the 1990 Oil Pollution Act refers to the amount an oil company is responsible for without being found at fault for an accident, she said.

She emphasized that there is absolutely no limit on the compensatory or punitive damages a company can be made to pay if it is found responsible for a spill, or on how much a company has to pay to clean up a spill.

Murkowski noted that arbitrarily setting the cap at $10 billion might make a good television sound-bite, but it could do significant harm to the nation’s energy security and the ability of American firms to compete against large nationalized oil and gas companies. “Such a cap would only exclude all but the biggest oil companies from operating offshore,” she said. “The irony is that under such a bill only BP and other foreign supermajors—most of them nationalized companies such as Saudi Aramco, the Chinese National Oil Co., Russia’s Gazprom, and Venezuela’s state-owned oil giant PDVSA—could produce America’s offshore resources.”

‘It’s very simple’
But another Energy Committee member who introduced a bill, S. 3305, which would raise the limit to $10 billion from $75 million on May 4 in response to the Gulf of Mexico crude oil spill, sought unanimous consent a second time for the Senate to debate the measure on May 18. “This is very simple: Whose side are you on?” said Robert Menendez (D-NJ). “Are you on the side of fishermen, working hard to make a living; the small inns that benefit from the tourism in the gulf region; the coastal communities that are going to be affected by virtue of the spill; or are you on the side of multibillion-dollar oil companies?”

His bill has 16 cosponsors. A companion bill in the US House, HR 5214, introduced by Rep. Rush D. Holt (D-NJ) on May 5, has 35. Murkowski and other congressional Republicans who think offshore spill liability limits should be increased after 20 years say an increase to $10 billion would have unintended consequences.

“Big Oil would love to have these caps up there so they can shut out all the independent producers,” said US Sen. James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.), as he opposed and effectively defeated Menendez’s motion. “Right now 63% of the gulf's natural gas and 36% of its oil are produced by independents. If you raise the caps right now, precipitously, this high, you are going to help the five big oil companies, including BP, and help the nationalized big oil companies, such as those in China and Venezuela, and shut out the small and medium-sized independents.”

Menendez rhetorically asked if a producer’s simply being an independent, “some valued at $40 billion,” should limit their liability for a spill. “I am for creating that liability across the entire range. If you are involved in a dangerous activity, one that can create enormous environmental and economic damage, then you should face the liability for such whether you are BP or you are some intermediate entity,” he said.

Inhofe responded that while he usually doesn’t agree with US President Barack Obama, they both believe the liability limit should be raised but are not sure yet where it should be set. Oil spill legislation, which the White House sent to Congress on May 12, would raise the oil spill liability fund’s statutory exclusion for a single incident to $1.5 billion from $1 billion, and the cap on natural resource damage assessments and claims from $500 million to $750 million. It also would raise the caps on liability for responsible parties but did not specify a new amount. “I don't know where the cap should be,” said Inhofe. “We are going to have to find out as this thing moves along.”

Other bills, concerns
US Sens. David Vitter (R-La.) and Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) introduced another spill liability bill on May 13 which would establish a new cap equal to a responsible company’s profits for the last four quarters or double the current $75 million level.

“Making a company at fault pay their last four quarters of profits is a much more effective way to ensure that energy companies actually pay for their mistakes without chasing many of them out of business,” Vitter explained. “Under our bill, the bigger companies would be liable for more than the $10 billion cap others propose.”

Other federal lawmakers argued that more immediate solutions are needed. In a May 18 floor speech after Menendez’s unanimous consent motion was defeated, US Sen. George S. LeMieux (R-Fla.) said that he asked BP PLC, operator of the well that is the source of the gulf spill, to set up a $1 billion fund for gulf states and communities to use now to handle problems from the spill.

“Right now we need dollars to get together our volunteers; our businesses; our local, county, city, and state governments to try to prevent this oil from coming ashore,” he maintained. We need the funds to do that today. We do not need them a month from now, six from now, or a year from now to pay claims. We need to get volunteers, senior citizens, and others on the beaches to help mitigate this damage that I think, unfortunately, is going to come ashore.”

US Sen. Mary L. Landrieu (D-La.), at the Senate Energy Committee’s May 18 hearing on the spill, said that she would introduce legislation to accelerate federal offshore oil and gas revenue sharing for Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas which the 2006 Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act established, but which now is not due until 2017.

"The people of Louisiana support the oil and gas industry. We support this initiative off of our coast, and we most certainly want it to be safe and more secure," Landrieu said. "We are horrified by the Deepwater Horizon accident. But we are also managing a delta that loses coastal marsh the size of a football field every 38 min. Decades of mismanagement, not only by inadequate regulation of this industry, but also by a lack of investment in the delta itself, has caused this to be one of the most pronounced ecological disasters, as oil is being spilled on a marsh that is already fragile and weakened.”

Contact Nick Snow at [email protected].

I realize that I've not attained the level of enlightenment that some of y'all have, and I'm certainly no expert, but it seems to me that BP has already spent well over $75000000 on this deal and will be spending even more. It also seems like there might be more to this than just being a "corporate apologist" or an evil GOPer...as usual things are more complicated than some folks make them out to be. I could be wrong, Imhofe could just be a shill for the evil multinationals...
 

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