BP PLC and local and federal authorities successfully brought under control an onshore well on the North Slope of Alaska that began leaking oil and gas last week, the company said Monday morning. What's more, an earlier statement from the Unified Command Task Force tackling the spill said that the amount of oil leaked was small compared to the amount of gas that is being released.
Based on aerial pictures, the release appeared to be confined to the gravel pad surrounding the well head and had not reached the surrounding tundra, BP said.
Clanton said BP is focused on safely securing the well. In 2006, a corroded pipeline released almost 5,000 barrels of crude oil, the largest oil spill in the North Slope at the time. The damage to the well is extensive: it has risen three or four feet out of the ground and its pressure gauge has been severely damaged, according to the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) on Saturday.
BP and state regulators are investigating the cause. The spill was discovered on Friday, and the oil leakage has since been contained but gas is still flowing from the well, according to the Alaskan Department of Environmental Conservation. "The bottom leak has been reduced, but is now leaking gas as well as some minor amount of crude oil".
The ADEC also said that two leaks have been identified at the well, one near the top and one further down the well assembly.
The crude spray onto the well pad was discovered Friday morning, and capped on Sunday. The production of the North Slope rose to about 565,000 Barrels per day in the month of March, which was the highest since the year 2013's month of December. Fortunately, there were no reports on the matter of injuries or any kind of unintended harm towards the wildlife of Alaska.