Power Blackouts And Water Shortages Threaten Florida

Tyler Durden's picture

Some bad news for our Tampa Bay/Mons Venus-based (yes, they do have WiFi) readers: globalresearch.ca notes that Florida "faces severe fresh water shortages and power blackouts if the thick crude oil from the Deepwater Horizon disaster clogs sea water intakes at the largest seawater desalinisation plant in the United States -- the Tampa Bay Seawater Desalinisation Plant at Apollo Beach in Tampa, Florida." And some even worse news for America's purported democratic/free speech regime: "The Obama administration has taken a page from the government of Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and Chernobyl in censoring the bad news from the Gulf oil mega-disaster. The Chernobyl cover-up largely resulted in the hastening of glasnost and the ultimate collapse of the Soviet Union." 

From Globalresearch.ca

nformed emergency planning sources in Florida have informed WMR that the state faces severe fresh water shortages and power blackouts if the thick crude oil from the Deepwater Horizon disaster clogs sea water intakes at the largest seawater desalinisation plant in the United States -- the Tampa Bay Seawater Desalinisation Plant at Apollo Beach in Tampa, Florida.

The plant, which uses seawater reverse osmosis to turn seawater into 16 to 19 million gallons of drinking water daily for residents of the Tampa Bay area, faces the threat of filtration membranes becoming clogged if oil from the Gulf of Mexico enters its intake pipes. Such an event would render the plant unable to process seawater, resulting in a major fresh water shortage for the Tampa Bay.

Similarly, oil clogging the water cooling intakes at the Crystal River Nuclear Power Plant on the Gulf of Mexico coast, some 80 miles north of Tampa, could force the shutdown of the Unit 3 pressurized water nuclear reactor. Such an event would result in power shutdowns in the Florida areas served by the power plant.

The Obama administration has taken a page from the government of Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and Chernobyl in censoring the bad news from the Gulf oil mega-disaster. The Chernobyl cover-up largely resulted in the hastening of glasnost and the ultimate collapse of the Soviet Union.

All that is needed is the US government to now take charge of this fiasco. Unfortunately, it appears this will happen quite soon.

h/t John

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George the baby crusher's picture

I'm guessing the Obama administration isn't the first to use Gorbachovian methods.  Disturbing development all the same.

Augustus's picture

The website collects every unconfirmed conspiracy theory and makes them easily and convienently accessible for the nutters who are wired that way.  Make up something about a minisub observing the cleanup and post it somewhere.  Unnamed sources in Washington DC confirm " . . BS of the Day . . ."  It will show up there eventually.

williambanzai7's picture

If you do a news search you will see that many news organizations are complaining about the information lock down.

OnTheFelt's picture

Well from your comments, it is quite apparent that your geographic location is no where near the Gulf.....so do me a favor and kindly go fuck yourself.

I mean sure, business as usual, we love the fucking status quo.  Stock market's up, BP stock is up, Obama says seafood safe to eat.

Fuck it, I'm going surfing this afternoon.


Popo's picture

Yawn.  Another pissy, irrational poster from the Yahoo boards.  The situation in the Gulf is tragic.  Not once did I claim otherwise.  Not once did I support the "business as usual" or the "status quo". 

Have fun surfing this afternoon.


russki standart's picture

I will keep it short and Sweet, Popo FUCK OFF!

Popo's picture

Oh you'll keep it "short and sweet"?   Looks to me like you're incapable of forming a logical response.

Duhh.. fuck off... duhh.   Uh huh...

Thank you for your contribution to the conversation.



merehuman's picture

popo, up your bucket! ZH is about life on the front lines.

Popo's picture

Oooh.. "life on the front lines".  That sounds so edgy.   How's suburbia, MH?

Another non-response from another non-thinker.

WaterWings's picture


What is the probability of oil clogging the filters? You seem to think zero. That's funny. You. If ya didn't notice, Ty didn't write the piece, you piece.

Whizbang's picture

I am in awe of the infantile attacks launched on anyone who calls bullshit on the constant "end of the world" crap on this site. Anyone who dares challenge a ridiculous statement (12k gold, imminent economic collapse, loss of drinking water to Florida...etc)  is met with a storm of vitriol from a dozen unemployed college aged conspiracy theorists living in mommy's basement. I love half of the stuff on this site, the other half is straight conjecture and hyperbole.

A simple engineering solution would be to extend the pipes below the water line sufficiently far to ensure that surface water is not drawn in. Problem solved...no collapse of capitalism.


Awaiting junking and ad hominem attacks.


WaterWings's picture

Whizbang = dumbshit

Corexit has pushed most of oil down into the water.

You forgot space aliens.

Whizbang's picture

thank you for proving my point. I would love to see the engineering analysis you have prepared proving your hypothesis. Oh, don't have one huh? What a shame.

WaterWings's picture

Have you even been watching the news? At all?

ZerOhead's picture

Perhaps you may wish to reconsider.

Normally I don't like to post long articles... and I am trying to keep this one as short as possible by posting only the relevant information. This comes from someone in the know at theoildrum.com. There is more if you wish to see it from the June 13th article.

Enjoy Mr. Happypants!

What is likely to happen now?

Well...none of what is likely to happen is good, in fact...it's about as bad as it gets. I am convinced the erosion and compromising of the entire system is accelerating and attacking more key structural areas of the well, the blow out preventer and surrounding strata holding it all up and together. This is evidenced by the tilt of the blow out preventer and the erosion which has exposed the well head connection. What eventually will happen is that the blow out preventer will literally tip over if they do not run supports to it as the currents push on it. I suspect they will run those supports as cables tied to anchors very soon, if they don't, they are inviting disaster that much sooner.

Eventually even that will be futile as the well casings cannot support the weight of the massive system above with out the cement bond to the earth and that bond is being eroded away. When enough is eroded away the casings will buckle and the BOP will collapse the well. If and when you begin to see oil and gas coming up around the well area from under the BOP? or the area around the well head connection and casing sinking more and more rapidly? ...it won't be too long after that the entire system fails. BP must be aware of this, they are mapping the sea floor sonically and that is not a mere exercise. Our Gov't must be well aware too, they just are not telling us.

All of these things lead to only one place, a fully wide open well bore directly to the oil deposit...after that, it goes into the realm of "the worst things you can think of" The well may come completely apart as the inner liners fail. There is still a very long drill string in the well, that could literally come flying out...as I said...all the worst things you can think of are a possibility, but the very least damaging outcome as bad as it is, is that we are stuck with a wide open gusher blowing out 150,000 barrels a day of raw oil or more. There isn't any "cap dome" or any other suck fixer device on earth that exists or could be built that will stop it from gushing out and doing more and more damage to the gulf. While at the same time also doing more damage to the well, making the chance of halting it with a kill from the bottom up less and less likely to work, which as it stands now?....is the only real chance we have left to stop it all.

It's a race now...a race to drill the relief wells and take our last chance at killing this monster before the whole weakened, wore out, blown out, leaking and failing system gives up it's last gasp in a horrific crescendo.

We are not even 2 months into it, barely half way by even optimistic estimates. The damage done by the leaked oil now is virtually immeasurable already and it will not get better, it can only get worse. No matter how much they can collect, there will still be thousands and thousands of gallons leaking out every minute, every hour of every day. We have 2 months left before the relief wells are even near in position and set up to take a kill shot and that is being optimistic as I said.

Over the next 2 months the mechanical situation also cannot improve, it can only get worse, getting better is an impossibility. While they may make some gains on collecting the leaked oil, the structural situation cannot heal itself. It will continue to erode and flow out more oil and eventually the inevitable collapse which cannot be stopped will happen. It is only a simple matter of who can "get there first"...us or the well.

We can only hope the race against that eventuality is one we can win, but my assessment I am sad to say is that we will not.


Whizbang's picture

I have been one of the greatest (and most vocal) proponents on ZH that there is an information restriction put in place over the leak. I have also shared rumors I have heard in D.C. claiming that the u.s. navy is monitoring the leak, because the feds don't trust BP any more than I do. I have been describing the oil release as a "volcano" for over a month. I am just sick of the hyperbole, outrageous claims, and the way a question mark is often used to justify making a conjecture into a news story. I agree that the gulf is fucked, but I don't think it's appropriate to try to pass off misinformation as real news. 

ZerOhead's picture

Perhaps I over-reacted Whizbang... my apologies Big Guy... let me offer my thoughts...

End of the world?                                       Certainly not.

Years of messy beaches?                              Definitely.

Death of life in the Gulf forever?                           Nope.

A decade of lost fisheries within a 200 miles radius.    Probably.

Will the Gulf recover 100%?                      In time 100% Yes.


But for now? This is only going to get worse from here on in and what you have seen so far is nothing.

MsCreant's picture

Cats and dogs fight. Old news. Besides, you called him happypants, not exactly very ugly. 

BTW, you are more optimistic than I am. NOLA is reporting toxic air clouds, one day the toxins read a smidge over 40 (the highest safe number) the next day almost 1200, the next day like 46, the next day 1100. I posted the link last night and can't find it. We haven't seen all that is coming out of this yet.

ZerOhead's picture

That would be part of the "you ain't seen nothing yet" part.

Localized  air health effects could cause deaths to the elderly and perhaps increased cancer rates among the general population... expect the administration to deny or suppress those reports.

If she blows before she fizzles out or is sealed (long shot for the foreseeable future...) get the people the hell away from there. Seriously.

Rule of thumb to those living in the gulf:

If you can smell any petroleum (or even hydrogen sulphide rotten eggs...) smell?

Leave... it's already in the PPM (parts per million) zone. Short and long term exposure limits are listed in the OSHA safety standards for industry. Check them out... I hear many of those who are working on the clean-up are already getting ill.

Hulk's picture

Most folks too poor to move ZO. Perhaps we shouldn't tear down all those homes in Detroit quite yet. but these folks are going to need financial assistance to move.

ZerOhead's picture

My sincere condolances to those who live alongside the Gulf.

From Katrina and Bush to Obama and BP... I think I would have snapped and gone psycho already... that Cajun blood sure is strong stuff... but how many times can you kick someone in the nuts before they strike back.

I used to live outside of Detroit for a year. It wasn't funny. We have some largish RE holdings there right now.

Yup fill the homes with people (you can buy them for a couple bucks) create a free trade zone with no taxes for manufacturers to bring some jobs (and dignity) back to the region.

Congress has done it for foreign territories (and to line their own pockets) so why the fu%& not for Americans?

Or hand the city over to Canada in a 100 year lease arrangement. Things would improve.


Ben Fleeced's picture

All due respect. Won't the deaths of the elderly and the higher cancer rates lower the financial pressures on the Social Security and the "health care" systems long term? Wouldn't "end of life counseling" in the health reform law draw down the political blow- back?



ZerOhead's picture

Only if they die quickly and inexpensively... I think the same argument was made in favor of smoking and driving while drunk!

WaterWings's picture

Whizbang = dumbshit

Let's take a look at his one post on this story:

The Cover-up: BP's Crude Politics And The Looming Environmental Mega-Disaster


"how was there zero volume for that bounce. I mean, literally 0 volume?!"



Most vocal? What a dumbshit. Did I call Whizbang a dumbshit? Yes, a dumbshit and a fucking liar troll.

ZerOhead's picture

We should examine and critique and perhaps even attack ideas here WW... preferably not people who hold opposing (however ill thought out) views!

ZH is an education in progress for me.

Heck... I say stupid things often too here's one of many...

I can think of a couple of things on this BP fiasco I'd love to take back... Christ I actually believed the Government (Obama) was telling the truth about the spill being 5,000 barrels for a while. I couldn't find anything credible and contrary on the net the first few weeks. Based on that info I recommended no short on BP.

I'm a fucking idiot for believing the goddamn government is what I am... amongst other reasons that is! :)


MsCreant's picture

You are my kind of idiot. Open. Don't typically take things too personally. You'd be a good neighbor. Water Wings is frustrated. I go in and out of it myself. Love is the plan, the plan is death (James Triptree Jr.)

ZerOhead's picture

Guys... THIS is how you get laid by the really hot chicks!

(Please take notes!)

Iam_Silverman's picture

OK, OK, me too!  I believed them too!

Hows that - do I score?


Seriously though - how was anybody outside of BP really going to be able to determine the size of the leak?  Remember, they are the only ones with enough magic to have a camera at that depth, so we only know what they show us!

ZerOhead's picture

Ya... I don't know. If this where my country to run I think I'd get an independant second opinion from my own guys sometime during the first oh say 6 weeks or so... especially in light of the media attention and potential bad carreer destroying PR.

You? :)

Hephasteus's picture

Zero you are ONE extremely smart guy but I think you are underestimating  a bit.

End of the world?                             No but this is going to really really really hurt

Years of messy beaches?             There will be too many sick hungry people to go so who cares.

Death of life in the Gulf forever?     Nope. The basic eco system will spring back extremely fast but what we use it for lobster, shrimp etc won't come back for a generation or two.

A decade of lost fisheries within a 200 miles radius. Think in reverse Fishing other spots and programs trying to learn factors in transplanting.

Worse case scenario. Something about the pipe deep down causes the rushing oil to set up a nasty cavitation process. It ruptures into the bedrock at say 5000 feet down. This whole setups a cavitation site further up the pipe wich ruptures a hole into less solid bedrock. That erodes out a side channel which sets up even further laminar flow. The oil slows down but comes out in very destructive curly vortex flows. This causes pressure differntials on the pipe walls and strain formations which start disassembling the pipe and spitting it out. The well head collapses sealing off the flow a little bit which seems good. The first releif well misses. The second relief well misses. They decide to nuke anyway in a desperate attempt to seal it off. It doesn't seal completely. Sets up a delayed erosion pattern that a year from now rips into the upper portion of the collapsed well head. It starts leaking thousands of gallons from a half square mile area in dozens of spots. It continues to collapse in on itself and seal itself off partially then one day millions of gallons of sea water disappear out of the gulf and millions of gallons of crude oil come gushing up through a couple square miles of sea floor.

The above scenario is not very likely. It could go down that way. Here's a simple scenario with much much more devestating results. BP continues dumping tons and tons of dispersant in the oil in an effort to hide it, keep it from reaching surface and looking as bad as it is. The dispersant gets soaked up into the rain water and reaches 2.6 parts per million toxic levels even AFTER it rains. That destroys all farming on over half of the US people starve. A massive fraction of our fresh water supply is brought in from the gulf through the vaporization engine. If the gulf stream keeps in a low latitude run we lose enough food production to cause massive problems. If it stays up north we lose way too much farm production and we are in serious freaking trouble. If it effects corn feed stocks everything is trouble from pigs to chickens to cows. Grazing lands are usually not lawns and consist of huge varieties of weeds and grasses but if the most nutritious varietes are affected the most and corn feed is down....

RichardP's picture

You could also step off of a curb and get hit by a car tomorrow.  Possible?  Yes.  Likely to happen?  No.  Why don't we wait until the relief wells are declared a failure in the fall before we speculate like this.


Hephasteus's picture

Look. They dump corexit on the oil for one reason and one reason only. To make it somewhat safer to work on the surface. Without the corexit there's a LOT more noxious gasses at surface and a lot more dangerous flamable liquids. It doesn't help anything other than the safety of people working on fixing it. It's going to make it safer to work on the well and it's probably going to kill hundreds of thousands of people by using it through destruction to the eco system.

Likely doesn't matter. BP will trade risk to hundreds of thousands of people for safety for a few thousand just as damn sure as the banking system will trade risk from  a few institutions onto millions of tax payers. So it's nice of you to be able to shrug and say this is going to be alright. The best case scenario won't be pretty and the best case scenario won't be what we get.

ZerOhead's picture

I agree with your assessment Hephasteus but microbial activity (bioremediation) in warm climates works fast. Nature will clean this up once the spill is sealed... which admittedly may take years. I am even reconsidering my initial opposition to the use of a nuclear weapon... it is a very risky proposition.

We could have a dead Gulf by the fall for all intents and purposes... but life will return in time and with some effort. The human toll will of course will be unfathomable.

The corexit 9500 is deodorized kerosine and was used to break the oil up into tiny droplets (make it undetectable to the eye...) and to keep in on the bottom where it cannot be seen. (For civil litigation liability advantage purposes). It will make things much worse for life in the waters... but should assist in speeding up the eventual recovery. That stated I would rather see the oil on the beaches but the effect on our industries and economy would necessarily be greater.

I was addressing the end-of-the-world 2012ers mostly my friend. I don't want people to freak out like some are but yes I know how serious the situation is and it WILL get much worse. We may have to evacuate coastal areas in the not-to distant future if the casings blow out and the well collapses in toto.

I just hate to see people live in fear... fear has very debilitating effect. I do wish to see them be justifiably angry however or things will never change.

Make no mistake... hundreds and perhaps thousands will die from the indirect effects that will not show up in civil courts or official body counts. I am thinking primarily those who live in the area with a special emphasis on the young and elderly. Hydrocarbon contamination of the air will be the primary cause.

It is a nightmare of epic proportions but it is NOT the end of the world IMHO!

That said... I've beeen known to be wrong before!

Hephasteus's picture

I agree with you on the microbial remediation blessings. The thing that worries me the mos at this point is the corexit. We have had such huge problems with funky weather patterns and all it takes is some sort of freak heat engine combination that brings a bunch of the corexit onto land in toxic amounts. Grocery stores go from being light on seafood to heavy on meat and big shortages on vegetables. Couple it with a global currency breakdown and america being forced to pay gold for food when it has little left.

I'm not going to sit here and entertain unreasonable things like 600 dollar packages of french fries or anything. But I will entertain progression of 20 percent of the population taking the brunt of this misery to suddenly 40 percent being under the hammer with the upper class being so brutally selfish as to even stop worrying about them. We could literally have 200 to 250 million people in harm's way in us canada and mexico by end of august.

ZerOhead's picture

Absolutely... but the same goes for surface oil. The lighter fractions floating on the surface will become airborne and precipitate out inland in the rain all through the Mississippi and Ohio valley coridors when a storm system sweeps in.

I am sure this is happening already in the PPB range. More oil on the surface = more hydrocarbons in the rain. It's tha simple... which is why the administration continued to allow the use of Corexit over Dispersit a soap based dispersant that would not prohibit the oil from reaching the surface.

Out of sight out of mind meets both parties objectives. And public safety as well. I thought the same way as you originally but I have since changed my mind.

These things happen frequently to me!


ZerOhead's picture

You are not far off the mark my friend... we are basically in agreement.

Read my post just a little above.

It is the worst environmental disaster this country is likely to ever see. And it has not begun to start in earnest yet.

My point is that the world will NOT end. Plain and simple. But they way things have always been for this region is soon to become a distant memory... that is a fact.

Clycntct's picture


Maybe you could tell   the secret you've been holding out on them.

ZerOhead's picture

Ha!!!  I beat you by minutes... then edited.

This is the same article from which my posted exerpt was taken. It contains a link through to the entire drilling process. A must read for those even only slightly curious as to what is going on the the Gulf of Mexico.

That said... there is one possible other saviour to this situation... namely we can hope that the reservoir pressures (and flows) decrease over time before complete failure occurs.

Clycntct's picture

Yep. I get lost in the computer looking for where is it in here somewhere.

Found it and post and in that time there are other posts.

Very scary what he runs down, and I just don't see best case scenarios.

Wish it wasn't so but most hopeee is fading for me.

Popo's picture


Thanks for the effort Whizbang, but as you can see, my original comment has been junked out of existence.  

All I did was challenge the premise of this article on logical grounds.   There was no ranting, no name-calling, no hyperbole.   I got junked, trashed and insulted by a bunch of conspiracist losers -- none of whom made a logical rebuttal to my post.

ZH's policy of allowing the rabid junkers to rule the comments section, while stripping the junked posts means one thing:  The quality of ZH comments will and must consistently plunge to the level of the lowest common denominator.  (How's that for doom and gloom?)

It's a sad day for ZH.


WaterWings's picture

Your own post defied logic. That's why you got junked. And it was also a strawman. That doesn't make sense to you?

hamurobby's picture

A collapse of Florida's economy which is fueled by tourism and retirement is more like it. Our unemployment rate is around 12% and the housing crisis is horendous, and this is just fuel to the fire. My perspective from Florida pretty much mirrors the (article), so I guess its the readers perspective that validates the content.

edit, I meant the article, not popos post

 I guess a few more hurricaines are next. this mess is going to really hurt fla and the rest of the gulf states.

Thoreau's picture

Here, Here! What's a little oil hitting Tampa to do with money/financials/economics? You're my hero, Bonzo.

nmewn's picture

Carnac nmewn says, the envelope please.

May the coming hurricanes suck up copius amounts of oil from the gulf and hold their breath until over your neighborhood.

FrankIvy's picture

It's a big Internet.

Why spend time on a board of which you have such a low opinion?

The Alarmist's picture

Are you saying this is a conspiracy to publish conspiracies?

FASB 666's picture

Time to give Florida back to the Native Americans.