A group of scientists says as much as 79 percent of BP Plc’s leaked oil remains in the Gulf of Mexico, challenging an Obama administration assessment that the crude is largely gone or rapidly disappearing.
Most of the oil that leaked from BP’s Macondo well from April 20 to July 15 is still beneath the water’s surface, scientists including Samantha Joye, a professor of marine sciences at the University of Georgia in Athens, concluded in a memo made public yesterday. The researchers say they drew upon the U.S. government’s study while reaching different conclusions.
The Obama administration’s Aug. 4 report indicated that almost three-fourths of the crude that leaked has disappeared or soon will be eaten by bacteria. Jane Lubchenco, administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, has said at least half of the oil released is now “completely gone.”