Sunday, February 4, 2007

Lusi In The Sky With Mud

Once again someone has done something really, really stupid to upset the Earth. No, I'm not talking about the global warming report just put out by the U.N. that showed the phenomenon is man-made, I'm talking about some morons who went drilling for natural gas and wound up making a gigantic mud volcano.

Here's a news report: http://www.physorg.com/news89653591.html

And here's the Geological Society of America journal article from February's issue: HERE

The morons in question were an Indonesia gas-drilling company called Lapindo Brantas. Back in May 2006 they were boring a hole in the ground near Surbaya, East Java, to look for gas and didn't line the sides of their hole with steel casing like they should have, which would prevent against unexpected expulsion of pressurized water. As a result, they drilled through an area of limestone, exposing an underwater aquifer, and up the water went. Only the aquifer wasn't just water, it was mud. Lapindo Brantas tried to blame the accident on an earthquake that happened days before, but the study reported in the journal of the GSA proves it was man-made.

I can imagine the conversation that led to the accident:

Bore-hole guy: "Hey, Foreman, should I put some steel casing down the bore hole? You know, like we are required to."

Lapindo Foreman: "Naw, Bambang, what's the worst that could happen? A little mud? Let's save some time and money and just dig without it. Get to work!"

What resulted was a mud volcano – a giant cone of constantly-spewing mud. This one has come to be named "Lusi". Ten square kilometers around the volcano are now uninhabitable and 13,000 people are permanently displaced. Four villages were completely erased, along with 25 factories, and 13 people died when a gas pipeline collapsed. The mud flow will likely continue for years, and there will probably be a collapse of earth around it resulting in the formation of a caldera.

How do you say "Oops" in Indonesian?

Maybe some good could come of this, eh? The power of positive thinking! Why, this could be the world's largest mud bath. They could make a spa for tourists. No? How about an SUV off-roading mud race? Yeah, that's the ticket. Those crazy Javanese and their monster trucks….

Okay, fine, it's a horrible catastrophe with no possible golden lining that resulted from someone's stupidity. Go figure.


UPDATE: http://angrylabrat.blogspot.com/2007/02/plugging-volcano.html

7 comments:

MikeJkt said...

This article proves nothing: it does not have a SINGLE LUSI-related source...
See also http://mikejkt.livejournal.com/13516.html

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