BP completes cementing the Macondo well, starts testing effectiveness

By Phaedra Friend Troy

According to a post by the British producer on Twitter, BP has completed the cementing process on the Macondo well in the deepwaters of the Gulf of Mexico. 

For comprehensive coverage of the Deepwater Horizon incident, oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and efforts under way to resolve them, visit PennEnergy's Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico special section.

After a successful injectivity test, BP pumped heavy drilling fluids into the Macondo well, achieving “static condition,” meaning the company could finally control the pressure in the runaway well.

The National Incident Commander gave the oil spill response team approval to commence cementing the well, and BP began pumping the concrete into the well at 9:15 a.m. (CDT) August 5.

After the well is pumped with cement, the slurry must be left to dry and harden, permanently sealing the well.

The first relief well is expected to intercept and perform a bottom kill on the Macondo well in mid-August.

The incident began with a blowout that caused an explosion aboard and the subsequent sinking of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig while it was performing plugging operations on the Macondo discovery well. It’s been more than 100 days since the Mississippi Canyon 252 deepwater oil and natural gas well began uncontrollably spewing hydrocarbons into the Gulf of Mexico.

The world has watched as BP and a team of government officials and industry experts have worked relentlessly to plug the well. Myriad subsea efforts have been deployed to wrangle the runaway well; some have been successful, others not.

Additionally, oil skimming, controlled burns and miles and miles of boom have been deployed to help contain the spill. Teams onshore have been cleaning the coast, simultaneously.

US President Obama’s administration revealed yesterday in a scientist-backed report that nearly 75 percent of the spill has been cleaned, captured or dissipated.

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