Drowning in Oil: BP & the Reckless Pursuit of Profit by Loren C. Steffy

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By Loren C. Steffy

The definitive account of ways BP's win-at-all-costs tradition resulted in this era's maximum commercial catastrophe

"A rigorously and powerfully written story." monetary occasions

"When an writer makes use of a loaded note like 'reckless' in a book's identify, the load of evidence is excessive. . . . Steffy meets the load via demonstrating that company behemoth BP (formerly British Petroleum) may have avoided the eleven deaths on April 20, 2010, aboard the Deepwater Horizon. . . . The deaths and the large oil spill following the sinking of Deepwater Horizon would certainly develop into a landmark of company ineptness and greed for the rest of human heritage, thank you partly to Steffy's outstanding account." San Antonio Express-News

"Steffy has produced a desirable, gripping, revealing account. . . . The publication info occasions aboard the Deepwater Horizon in April of 2010 to begin, however it digs deeper into what's printed as a tradition of cost-cutting boiling over inside BP. Steffy files years of incidents and negative administration judgements, detailing the increase of key characters like John Browne and Tony Hayward along riveting outlines of frightening occasions in Texas urban and at different BP destinations. . . . The ebook reads like fiction now and then, with the author's heavily-detailed bills of explosions and conversations developing vibrant, approximately fantastical photographs. The tragic historical past of BP is all-too-real, even though, because the misplaced lives and environmental harm definitely attest to.. . . Steffy is a radical, ordinary writer. His matters principally lie with the dying and the overall tradition of cost-cutting of BP, portray an apt and terrifying photograph of rampant, regular, high priced neglect." Seattle put up Intelligencer

"Steffy offers important perception and the most important company context in explaining how loads oil ended up within the Gulf of Mexico." BusinessWeek

"[Steffy's] investigations demonstrate a company tradition of cost-cutting tasks that positioned gains sooner than employees' lives and the surroundings, with repeated safeguard violations and an abysmal coincidence historical past. . . . Steffy information how, within the context of BP's list, the catastrophe was once simply a part of a development of terrible choice making within the relentless pursuit via BP to develop into the biggest and such a lot ecocnomic oil corporation within the world." Booklist

About the publication

As evening settled on April 20, 2010, a chain of explosions rocked Deepwater Horizon, the big semisubmersible drilling platform leased by way of British Petroleum, positioned forty miles off the Louisiana coast. the resultant inferno claimed eleven lives, and it is going to rage uncontained for 2 days, till its wreckage sank to a last resting position approximately a mile underneath the waves. at the ocean flooring, the unit's wellhead erupted. Over the subsequent ten weeks, as repeated makes an attempt to cap the geyser failed, an anticipated two hundred million gallons of oil—the similar of 20 Exxon Valdez spills—spewed into the Gulf of Mexico, finally lapping up on seashores as distant as Florida.

Drowning in Oil , through award-winning Houston Chronicle company reporter and columnist Loren Steffy—considered by means of many to be the author with the simplest entry to the story—is an unheard of and gripping narrative of this disaster and the way BP's winner-take-all company tradition made all of it yet inevitable.

Through never-before-published interviews with BP executives and staff, environmental specialists, and oil insiders, Steffy takes us backstage of a hundred years of BP company background. starting with the conglomerate's early gambits within the center East to its fresh ascent between strength titans, Steff finds the roots of the Gulf oil spill within the unwritten cut price among oil manufacturers and shoppers, whose insatiable appetites force the hunt for brand new offers swifter, farther, and deeper.

Beyond this, the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe came about after a historical past of fee slicing in pursuit of earnings, really lower than the tips of its latest ex-CEOs, John Browne and Anthony Hayward.

Exhaustively researched and documented, Drowning in Oil is the 1st in-depth exam of the way a scarcity of company accountability and govt oversight resulted in the most important offshore oil spill in U.S. background. it's an goal, no-punches-pulled account of the power undefined: its environmental influence and the serious festival between stakeholders in trendy oil markets.

This ebook places all the things jointly, delivering a definitive account of BP's pursuit of oversized gains because the commercial international awakens to the bleak realities of top Oil.

" They fumbled round the darkened room and located an guide. through flashlight, they learn the beginning approaches. They have been doing every thing correct. After 5 - 6 futile attempts, they gave up and headed again towards the bridge. again at the bridge, alarms have been shrieking and the captain knew they have been working out of time. The subsea engineer had hit the emergency disconnect for the good, and even supposing the keep watch over panel confirmed the rig might be loose, it wasn't. The hydraulics have been lifeless. hearth endured to shoot from the head of the derrick. The rig had no energy, and with no energy, it had no pumps for the firefighting gear, no approach to close off the move of gasoline from the good, and no approach to disconnect the rig from the flaming umbilical that had it tethered to the wellhead. " —from Drowning in Oil

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Williams stood up. If this had any chance of working, it would take more than one person. They couldn’t send a man back into the maw of the flames alone. Williams grabbed the supervisor by his shirt and told him that he wasn’t going by himself. Paul Meinhart, a motorman who’d joined Transocean just three months earlier, went with them. The three men headed back across the main deck and into the generator room. For 10, or perhaps 15, minutes they frantically tried to start the generator. The generator had a battery starter, and Williams was reading a 24-volt charge on the battery, but the engine wouldn’t start.

He’d spent six years in the dusty, sweltering deserts of Persia, and D’Arcy had forfeited a sizable piece of his fortune, only to be told to return home in defeat. Reynolds decided to stall. He couldn’t rely on a telegram for orders of such importance. Who knew what errors might have been typed into the message? He would need written confirmation, which, he hoped, would take at least a month. Two weeks later, while most of the drilling crew was sleeping, they were awakened at four in the morning by a rumbling and then the sounds of shouting.

As he made it to the door, he realized that what he had thought was air was actually methane. He could feel the droplets on his face. Everyone was in danger. Another explosion could doom them all. As he crawled down the hallway, he came across Wyman Wheeler, another toolpusher, who was covered in debris. As he cleared it off, a flashlight approached, bobbing around like a bouncing ball of light. It was Murray. The hallway was chaos. A few people came and went; several people were injured, and others were trying to help them.

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