BP was locked in a tense standoff with the Environmental Protection Agency, which had ordered the company to stop using a chemical dispersant called Corexit by Sunday. But BP continued spraying the chemical on Monday despite the E.P.A.’s demand that it use a less toxic dispersant to break up the oil. The company told the agency that no better alternative was available.
Durbin was joined by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, who were sent to the region Monday by President Obama in response to increasing criticism that the White House was not acting aggressively enough on the spill.
“The federal government has mounted the largest response to fight this oil in all of the history of this country,” Mr. Salazar said. Speaking of BP, he reiterated the phrase that the government would “keep our boot on their neck until the job gets done.”
Ms. Napolitano said the government had formed a group of “the best scientists available within the federal government” to calculate new estimates of how much oil has been released into the Gulf, suggesting that the government was not satisfied with BP’s estimates, which have attracted widespread criticism as too low. The group is expected to have its assessment ready by early next week.
So if I have this right, BP is doing what it can to stop the spill and contain the damage, while Obummer has sent his tools down there to point fingers, “assess the situation” and demand impossible, dream solutions, like a non-toxic, magic oil dispersant. We can sleep tonight.