Source
Scholastic News Online

Scholastic News Online is a free resource with breaking news and highlights from the print magazine.

Available for grades 1-6, Scholastic News magazine brings high-interest current events and nonfiction to millions of classrooms each week.

Additionally, our subscribers have FREE access to Scholastic News Interactive, an exclusive online learning tool featuring digital editions, videos, interactive features, differentiated articles, and much more.


Sunset over the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. The sun sets over oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. (Saul Loeb / AFP / Getty Images / NewsCom)

Oil Leak Sealed for Good

Drillers drop cement plug on the worst oil spill in U.S. history

By Zach Jones | September 21 , 2010
<br />(Map by Jim McMahon)

(Map by Jim McMahon)

Late last week, the leaking oil well that poured oil into the Gulf of Mexico for five months was finally permanently closed.

The well was sealed in August, but engineers still had to find a way to release pressure from inside to prevent future leaks. So drillers first made a hole in the seal to release that pressure, then filled the hole with cement to plug the faulty well for good.

"No one involved will forget this job," says John Wright, one of the drillers who helped plug the well. "There is a sense of satisfaction that we have accomplished our goal as planned."

But Wright says no one on his team celebrated closing the well. Since April, more than 206 million barrels of oil poured into the Gulf only 40 miles off Louisiana's coast. Though the well is closed, the spill caused lasting problems that still must be addressed.

The spill's effects on the environment and local wildlife have particularly shocked and saddened the world. Many endangered animals like turtles and pelicans have been killed or poisoned by the oil spill, which originated with an explosion under Deepwater Horizon, an offshore oil rig. Scientists worry that animals that encountered the oil may be diseased for generations to come.

Thousands of people have been affected too. In June, British Petroleum (BP)—the company responsible for the spill—agreed to create a $20 billion fund to help pay for cleaning up the environment and also to help people who lost money because of the spill, like fishermen. The company has so far spent almost $10 billion.

On Sunday, President Barack Obama thanked "the thousands of men and women who worked around the clock to respond to this crisis."

TRACKING THE OIL-SPILL DISASTER

Scholastic News Online has been tracking the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Click here for a collection of news stories, video, a kids' poll, and other resources that will grow as the events of this environmental disaster unfold.

  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    Sea Otter Rescue

    Sea Otter Rescue

    by Roland Smith

    Another great title from Scholastic. Detailed description coming soon.

    $5.21 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grades 5-7
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    Sea Otter Rescue
    Grades 5-7 $5.21
    Add To Cart
  • Scholastic Store
  • The Scholastic Store  
    Oil Spill: Disaster  

    Oil Spill: Disaster  

    On April 20, 2010, disaster struck in the Gulf of Mexico. The offshore oil rig Deepwater Horizon exploded, causing one of the worst environmental catastrophes in American history. Every day for months on end, more than a million gallons of oil leaked into the water. As the oil company BP frantically tried to stop the spill, scientists and emergency response crews searched for ways to repair the damage. Experts predict that the Gulf of Mexico's environment, wildlife, and industries will take decades to recover.

    But what exactly is oil? Where does it come from and why do we need so much of it? What caused this disaster to happen and how can we stop it from happening again? Learn the answers to these questions and more as you find out about the oil spill, relief efforts, and the future of energy use in the United States.

    $5.99
    books;paperback books;paperbacks | Ages 9-12
    Add To Cart
    Oil Spill: Disaster  
    Ages 9-12 $5.99
Privacy Policy
EMAIL THIS

* YOUR FIRST NAME ONLY

* FRIEND'S FIRST NAME ONLY

* FRIEND'S EMAIL ADDRESS

MESSAGE
Here's something interesting from Scholastic.com