Oil companies plan rapid response system to Gulf spills

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Four of the world’s biggest oil companies said on Wednesday that they were committing $1 billion to create a rapid-response system to deal with deepwater oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico, seeking to restore public confidence in the industry after the BP disaster painfully exposed how unprepared the industry was for a major accident.

The voluntary effort, which involves building a set of modular containment equipment that would be kept on standby for emergency use, comes as oil companies seek to persuade the Obama administration to lift a temporary ban on deepwater drilling. The moratorium was imposed after the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded on April 20 and spewed millions of gallons of oil into the gulf.

Officials said the spill served as a wake-up call for the industry, which had invested billions of dollars to develop oil and gas resources in ever-deeper waters offshore but neglected to devise spill-response technology that could be effective in thousands of feet of water.

Full Story: Oil Companies Plan Rapid Response System to Gulf Spills –