Saturday, July 3, 2010


 Here is a transcript from the CNN show "Ricks List" with PHILIPPE COUSTEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR.
Philippe gave a good talk about the spill while my video played as a back drop.

If anyone has a video of this I would certainly appreciate a link...

Now, Rick and Philippe...

"I want to take you to something else now. Ready? Now to the Gulf crisis, the other Gulf. Here's how Hurricane Alex has affected it. Strong winds, choppy waves are still complicating the cleanup effort, still, even though the hurricane's gone.

According to BP, Alex created waves of up to 12 feet. Hundreds of oil skimmers had to be docked. A BP spokesperson says the winds also affected a cap. Yes, you know, that cap, the one that's trying to capture the oil that's gushing into the Gulf of Mexico, that one right there.

The cap can be seen actually bouncing in the water at times. And this raises the question, is BP capturing less oil now? Also, give me a shot of the booms. Remember these things, these big booms here? They were laid out to keep the oil from reaching the shore, right?

Well, the rough seas may force crews to replace or have to reorganize.

And joining me is Philippe Cousteau, who is's newest contributor.

First of all, Philippe, welcome to the family.

PHILIPPE COUSTEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Thanks. Thanks very much, Rick. SANCHEZ: All right, you and I are going to look at a couple of pictures here, because these things have gone viral on the Internet. And I was stunned when I first saw this.

It's as good a report as I have seen from any network or newspaper producer in this country. Watch this video. It's produced by a defiant pilot. His name is John Wathen. And when you look at what he says about the dispersants mixing with the oil, the burning of the oil and the animals and how they're being affected in the Gulf, you get a real insider's perspective on this thing.

Roll it, Rog.


WATHEN: From the size of these fires, it seems as though we're not only trying to kill everything in the Gulf of Mexico, but everything that flies over it as well.

This toxic environment can't be good for the birds that fly over the Gulf and certainly nothing can live in these rainbows of death that cover the entire horizon.


SANCHEZ: It's incredible to watch. This thing goes on for quite a bit. We're going to show you different parts of it. But let's stop it right there.

And I guess what I come away with as I watch him explaining -- talking about the dispersants, the animals, the smoke, is the cure in this case as harmful as the disease itself? I'm speaking, obviously, metaphorically, but you get my drift, right?

COUSTEAU: Well, absolutely. And actually I met John on my last trip down to the Gulf about a week ago. And I will be headed back down next week.

And I think very much this helps illustrate just how unprepared for this spill we were and that our solutions, burning, skimming, these feeble booms that do very, very little, on average catch only about 20 percent of the oil, the application of these toxic chemical dispersants that I filmed the first time I went to the Gulf diving underwater about two months ago, these solutions aren't very much solutions at all.

And as we see, the oil is washing up on the shores. It's not really helping the situation. And with a storm like Alex that didn't even hit the site, let alone the multiple storms that are probably coming the rest of the year...

SANCHEZ: Oh, yes.

COUSTEAU: ... it's not good.

SANCHEZ: By the way, this next video that I'm going to share with you, this is kind of heartbreaking, especially for guys like you and guys like me. I grew up in Miami. I have been around these waters my whole life. Watch the effect it's having on sea life there. Go ahead, Rog. Hit this next -- hit -- this is number two.


WATHEN: Then we found this guy. A sperm whale swimming in the oil had just breached. Along his back, we could see red patches of crude, as if he had been basted for broiling.

Then there was this pod of dolphins found later, some already dead, some in their death throes. It seemed to be that they were raising their heads and looking at the fires, wondering, why is my world burning down around me? Why would humans do this to me?

As we approached the Chandeleur Islands, I wasn't surprised to see patches of oil along the beach. Given the difficulty in putting boom out and making it stay along these islands, it's going to be impossible to try and keep the oil out. I shudder to think what's going to happen when a storm does some through here.

All the oil that we have just flown over will be alongside this. The marshes and all this boom that you see now will be piled up on the shore covered with oil.


SANCHEZ: This guy tells a hell of a story. And you know what's interesting about him? There's supposed to be a no-fly zone over this oil. As a journalist, it makes me think that they don't want planes flying over this area because they don't want this story told.

COUSTEAU: Of course not.

SANCHEZ: But this guy tells a story as well as anybody I have ever heard tell a story.

And now we're hearing, by the way, the the EPA wants the dispersant usage dropped to 75 percent. BP's declined to drop it. They're saying, by the way, that this thing -- this dispersant they're using is no more toxic than house soap. Are they right?

COUSTEAU: Not from my understanding.

When we went diving in this, we had to wear full hazmat equipment. All the research that I have seen is quite opposite. You wouldn't want this in your own kitchen. You wouldn't want this stuff in your house. It affects the nervous system. It attacks red blood cells. It causes dizziness, headaches. And that's even with short- term exposure.

So, no, this chemical dispersant is quite toxic, and it's very concerning they're applying this much into the Gulf. But, listen, it makes it out of sight. And when things are out of sight, it's a lot easier for them to be out of mind.


COUSTEAU: And I think that has to do a lot with it.

SANCHEZ: Well, let's keep it in sight. Here's another clip. Roger, roll this third part.


WATHEN: At 23 miles out, we encountered the heaviest sheens yet. Some of it looks as if a child had sprayed silly string all over the surface, but there's nothing silly about these strings of oil that float on the Gulf of Mexico today.


SANCHEZ: He's good.

Look, are we as Americans -- it's not until you look at these pictures, as grandiose as they appear on this big screen, that we start to really get the impact of this.

Are we as Americans underestimating the impact of this story in the Gulf because it's gone on for so long?

WATHEN: Well, I think that's one of the big challenges, Rick, with this whole disaster, is just that it's something that's lasting a very, very long time.

And we have a short attention span in this country. And we have to remember this is far from over. And it's very likely going to get a lot worse before it gets better. And I think John is an example of the anger and the resiliency at the same time and the passion that so many of the people feel along the Gulf. And especially here in this Fourth of July weekend, it reminds us about spending time with our families on the beach and swimming in the water. And this is an affront against our entire country.


Well, I'll tell you what. And there are some people who are saying, we're still not sure if actually -- we had all been told and we felt reassured that, by August, we're going to be done with this thing. Now I'm hearing that there's a possibility that it may not be done by August. And...

COUSTEAU: Well, they have got to drill through 18,000 feet of rock to hit a pipe that's seven inches wide.

SANCHEZ: Good luck.

COUSTEAU: Relief wells are not a guaranteed solution the first time. I certainly hope beyond hope, though, that these will be successful.

SANCHEZ: Philippe Cousteau, a good-looking guy, part of the new CNN family. The gals in the control room say, we didn't have you on enough. So, we will get you back. All right. Thanks, man.

WATHEN: Pleasure. Any time, Rick. Thank you.

SANCHEZ: You're a smart guy. Appreciate your time.

1 comment:


    i can't do more than post this link all over again. Maybe that's a way at least a part of the oil can be get on with... and most importantly: after the spill is stopped!!! otherwise everything is useless.


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