BP Says Gulf of Mexico Oil Well in 'Static Condition'
The pressure was stabilized by the so-called static kill process of pumping in mud, which began Tuesday, BP said in a statement.
"The well is now being monitored, per the agreed procedure, to ensure it remains static," BP said. "Further pumping of mud may or may not be required depending on results observed during monitoring."
BP began the static kill operation at around 4pm ET Tuesday, pumping in mud at a rate of 2 barrels a minute, the Washington Post reported. The next stage of the static kill would be to seal the underground oil reservoir with cement, a move that requires federal approval.
Even if the static kill process is successful, the ultimate solution for the ruptured well will be a relief well. The first relief well should reach the Macondo annulus by the middle of this month.
The government will announce today that about 74% of the oil that spewed out of the well has "evaporated, dispersed, been captured or otherwise eliminated," according to the New York Times. The remaining oil is quickly breaking down and is unlikely to pose a significant threat.