Seems people might be interested in what BP is doing to close that well in our Great Gulf of Mexico that is spewing ~5000 barrels of oil per day. Consider the Exxon Valdez dumped 250 thousand barrels, in a bay. It would take 50 days of this BP well running to equate, so don't get your panties in a bunch, it only been 38 days. Actual flow rates are not known, though. The New York Times had this nice diagram to describe the process. BP's diagram is below, prettier, but not as informative. You can summarize the process as trying to chug a whole beer while you vomit up that chili cheese dog with extra onions you ate this morning that was left on the kitchen counter last night. Who will win, the beer [BP top-kill] or the hotdog [spewing oil]? I just hope after the investigation this turns out to truly be an accident and no serious negligence is found on the part of BP or the drilling company. Our illustrious President Obama is killing all the drilling contracts as we speak. Can anyone say knee-jerk....emphasis on jerk.
UPDATE: EPIC FAIL...to date [6 June 2010] the oil still flows and the flow rates are much higher than thought. It is believed it has more than surpassed the Exxon Valdez spill. One glimmer of hope is they have been able to start collecting some of the oil at the broken well head and pumping it aboard ships.