Fire explodes in Gulf of Mexico following ruptured gas pipeline
“The Gulf of Mexico is literally on fire because a pipeline ruptured”, Brian Kahn, Editor-in-Chief of Earthling, tweeted a few hours ago. He shared a video that looked like CGI, but unfortunately it wasn’t.
Gulf of Mexico is literally on fire with ruptured pipeline pic.twitter.com/J4ur5MNyt1
– Brian Kahn (@blkahn) July 2, 2021
Reuters reported that the fire occurred west of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula and was triggered by a gas leak from an undersea pipeline. The fire took more than five hours to extinguish completely, according to Pemex, the oil company whose pipeline was responsible for the leak. The pipeline connects to Pemex’s flagship oil development, Ku Maloob Zaap. The platform is located near the southern edge of the Gulf of Mexico. Pemex confirmed that no one was injured and that its output from the project was not affected. He is also investigating the cause of the fire.
Reuters pointed out that Pemex has a long record of major industrial accidents at its facilities. Angel Carrizales, head of Mexico’s oil safety regulator, ASEA, took to Twitter to give some updates as it was technically Mexican Gulf territory.
The @agencia_asea da seguimiento al evento ocurrido esta mañana en la Sonda de #Campeche, relacionada con una linea de #gas, la cual ya fue atendida y controlada por personal de @Pemex conforms to the Protocolos de Respuesta a Emergencias. El hecho no generó ningún derrame.
– Carrngel Carrizales (@acarrizales_) July 2, 2021
Translated (via Twitter), he said EASA had followed up on the blaze and had previously been “monitored and controlled” by Pemex staff “in accordance with its emergency response protocols” . Good to know. “The event did not generate any spills,” they added.
One of ReutersSources said the Pemex incident report read: “Turbomachines at Ku Maloob Zaap’s active production facilities were affected by an electrical storm and heavy rain.”
Ku Maloob Zaab is Pemex’s largest crude oil producer and accounts for over 40% of its daily production of around 1.7 million barrels.
Although the fire is extinguished, the fact that there was gas leaking into the ocean and then exploding in a fire should alarm you. It is not known how long he was on the leak before the gas caught fire. It could have been minutes, it could have been weeks. Seriously, it takes a lot for something underwater to catch fire. Lightning hitting the ocean where there is gas is a possibility.
Fossil-fueled disasters are never good for the ocean – or our planet
What we do know is that toxic spills that leak or dump into the ocean are never good. People magazine Just today reported that several hundred dead marine animals, including dolphins, were stranded in Sri Lanka after a cargo ship filled with toxic chemicals caught fire and sank. So far, 4 whales, 20 dolphins and 176 turtles have been found dead.
Local authorities believe that the death of the animals is linked to toxins released by the fire from the boat. The New York Times interviewed the Chairman of the Sri Lanka Marine Environment Protection Authority, Dharshani Lahandapura. “It is very evident that the death of these marine animals is linked to the ship,” said Lahandapura. “Last year, during the same period, only two turtle deaths were reported.”
One of the ship’s containers was already leaking nitric acid by the time it entered Sri Lankan waters. After catching fire, petroleum, caustic soda, methanol and plastic granules also spilled into the ocean, the article notes.
While gas is not as bad as oil, it is still bad when there is a gas leak, as you can see from the videos. The gas is highly flammable and it is really not known how much gas has leaked into the water. How will this affect our ecosystem? How will this affect food chains? Your favorite seafood might have an extra spice that’s not good for you. No matter how serious underwater gas leaks are, they are all too common.
In 2012, Watershed Sentinel published an article by Dr Irene Novaczek titled “Environmental Impact of the Offshore Oil and Gas Industry”.
“The environmental consequences of discharges of natural gas into the sea are particularly serious when they occur near the shore, in shallow water or in areas with slow water circulation. “
She added that it is toxic to fish and shellfish and explained that natural gas can quickly enter the body of fish, damaging their gills, skin, eyes, etc. Gas leaks make fish unable to control their buoyancy.
“At concentrations of 0.02 to 0.05 mg / L, the gas will be detected by the fish and they will move away. If, however, fish are exposed to concentrations greater than 1 mg / l, they become excited within seconds of contact, then disoriented and unable to flee. Within 15 to 20 minutes, fish exposed to such concentrations show signs of acute poisoning and die within 1 to 2 days of exposure. Seashells are also killed by exposure to gas. Zooplankton and phytoplankton can tolerate higher gas concentrations than fish or crustaceans (i.e. they die at 2 – 5 mg / l).
Sometimes I seriously think the fossil fuel industry is secretly trying to kill us all and destroy this planet.