BP plug plans delayed by bad weather

City A.M. Reporter
BP’S efforts to permanently plug the Deepwater Horizon well have been delayed by stormy seas caused by Hurricane Earl.

The firm said it would have to wait at least two days before proceeding with a plan it hopes will stop the leak for good.

Thad Allen, the US official overseeing the Deepwater Horizon work said waves in the area were up to eight feet. “For now we are in a hold pending further calming of the weather out here. The current weather looks like it’s going to hold for at least the next two to three days.”

Meanwhile, the Obama administration has imposed a new ethics policy on employees overseeing offshore drilling as the government moves to clean up a regulatory regime tarnished by the BP oil spill.

Under the new rules issued to employees, inspectors for the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management are barred from conducting inspections on any projects employing family members or close friends.

The bureau has faced intense attacks since the Gulf oil spill, with critics saying the agency was too close to the industry it was supposed to regulate.

However, there are concerns in the industry that the rules might make it difficult to find
inspectors in some areas, which could slow the approval process of projects.