Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Gulf Coast oil spill will change the energy business - Profoundly

SHOOT: For starters the world's 4th largest company will no longer exist.

Matt Simmons: They're going to run out of cash from lawsuits, cleanup and other expenses. One really smart thing that Obama did was about three weeks ago he forced BP CEO Tony Hayward to put in writing that BP would pay for every dollar of the cleanup. But there isn't enough money in the world to clean up the Gulf of Mexico. Once BP realizes the extent of this my guess is that they'll panic and go into Chapter 11.
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We've got to stop the gusher first. Then we have to deal with the other issues. There's a lake at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico that's over 100 miles wide and at least 400 to 500 feet deep of black oil. It's just staying there. And only the lightest of that is what we're seeing hitting the shores so far. If a hurricane comes and blows this to shore, it could paint the Gulf Coast black. We should have been pumping this oil out onto other tankers weeks ago.

How do you think the U.S. government should handle this disaster?

I think the government should ask BP to leave the United States and turn its operation over to the military. Put the U.S. Navy in charge. Have all the contractors report to the Navy -- the cleanup efforts, the whole nine yards. Because as long as it's in BP's hands, they're going to spin the information as long as they can.

What do you think is in store for the future of BP?
They have about a month before they declare Chapter 11.
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