The Los Angeles Times
August 22, 2010

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t
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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released a controversial “oil spill budget” Aug. 2 estimating that a large part of the oil released into the Gulf of Mexico by the Deepwater Horizon spill was gone. But in a hearing on Capitol Hill, a NOAA official conceded that three-fourths of the pollutants from the 4.1 million barrels spewed into the gulf are still lingering in the environment.

Bill Lehr, senior scientist with NOAA’s Office of Restoration and Response, said booming and burning probably cleaned up only about 10% of the spilled oil. Much of the oil has evaporated or dispersed, but remains a source of hydrocarbons in the ecosystem, he said.

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“This is a continuing operation,” Lehr emphasized. “The spill is far from over. We’re beginning a new phase, and NOAA and all the other agencies will be involved in this.”

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