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Tar balls discovered on the Florida Keys shoreline are not connected to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the Coast Guard said Wednesday.
Tests done "conclusively show" that the tar balls found on the shoreline do not match the type of oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The source of the tar balls remains unknown at this time.
Coast Guard officials said the tar balls were being recovered at a rate of nearly three an hour throughout the day, but they aren't sure where they came from.
Government scientists who surveyed the Gulf on Tuesday said tendrils of light oil were near or already in a powerful current that could take it to Florida. The loop current circulates in the Gulf and takes water south to the Florida Keys and the Gulf Stream.
As if to reassure, a statement from Tallahassee noted that just last year there were 681 reports of ``oil and petroleum incidents along Florida's waterways and beaches,'' advising ``these types of occurrences are not as unusual as one might think.''
According to the Minerals Management Service, a United States government entity, tar and tar seepage are natural parts of the environment. It is evidenced that oil, tar and gas have occurred throughout the coastlines for thousands of years, and are particularly prevalent along the California coastline due to its mountainous regions. Scientists often cannot tell the difference between oil from naturally-occurring seeps and oil from offshore spills. Along the California coastline, there is a large amount of oil seeping naturally from the rocks under the ocean. environmentalism.suite101.com...
The Tiber oilfield is a deepwater offshore oilfield in the Gulf of Mexico, discovered by BP in September 2009.
Described as a "giant" find, it is estimated to contain 4 to 6 billion barrels (640×10^6 to 950×10^6 m3) of oil in place, although BP states it is too early to be sure of the size - a "huge" field is usually considered to contain 250 million barrels (40×10^6 m3).
It required the drilling of a 10,685-metre (35,056 ft) deep well under 1,260 metres (4,130 ft) of water, making it one of the deepest wells drilled at the time of discovery (the drilling rig's owner states "the deepest ever".)