The well is capped, right? So how come a fishing boat captain, speaking on NPR early this morning, is asserting the amount of oil in the water has increased?
Because there's a seep. And that's bad news.
...Tests had detected a seep — usually a flow of hydrocarbons from the seafloor — “a distance from the well.” And while the letter said the federal government would allow the test to continue for now, the discovery of a seep and the unspecified anomalies suggest that the well could be damaged and that it may have to be reopened soon to avoid making the situation worse.
And on top of that, BP is trying to avoid uncapping the well because it would enable more accurate estimates of the amount of oil that has escaped into the Gulf since mid-May.
If the well is not reopened, it could mean that the precise volume of oil that leaked — the well has been estimated to be flowing at a rate of 35,000 to 60,000 barrels a day — may never be known. That raises the question of whether the company might escape some liability for the spill. ...NYT