The causes of the massive Gulf oil spill will be laid out for the first time Monday by investigators working for President Barack Obama's independent commission, potentially shifting the blame and settling disputes between companies over the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history.
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#22 Nov 8, 2010
Nalco (NLC): Warren Buffetts Small Cap Stock Investment in Water Industry (BloggingStocks)
Mar.07, 2009 Water Industry, Water Technology
(March 4, 2009, BloggingStocks)
"Warren Buffetts Berkshire Hathaway revealed a new position in Nalco Holding (NYSE: NLC); its my favorite pure play on water filtration, says Chris Mayer in Daily Wealth.
With a $1.6 billion market cap, Nalco is a small-cap stock, but its actually one of the worlds largest water-treatment companies. Customers use Nalcos products and services to prevent corrosion, contamination, and the buildup of harmful deposits.
Buffett picked up 8.7 million shares. That makes Berkshire the second-largest shareholder in the company, with a little more than 6% of the shares.Its easy to see what Buffett likes.
Nalco generates a steady stream of free cash flow $142 million in its fiscal year ended September 30. Today, the market cap is about $1.6 billion. So youre getting nearly a 10% free cash flow yield. Put another way, youre only paying about 10 times free cash flow. Not earnings, but cash flow.
On the downside, Nalco has a leveraged balance sheet with $3.1 billion in net debt. However, its business model ensures steady cash inflows from service contracts, which is less of a risk than it might seem.
Also, the first significant maturities dont come until November of 2010 plenty of time for the credit markets to return to some friendlier state. In any event, the debt was not enough of a risk to put Buffett off the scent.
There is also a nice backdrop to the Nalco thesis. Water is a scarce commodity. Two-thirds of the worlds population face water shortages by 2025, according to the United Nations. And according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, about 36 states face water shortages by 2013.
These issues may not seem so pressing to you, since every time you turn on the tap, the water flows. But it is an important issue for industrial users of water all over the world.
Nalco is right in the heart of this issue. Nalcos customers are industrial users. Nalcos services improve water efficiency. The company also offers services to reduce air pollution, treat industrial wastewater, and more. In this, Nalco is the global leader, with a 17% global market share. Its bigger than GE in water."
#23 Nov 8, 2010
#24 Nov 8, 2010
"What BP And The US Government Don't Want You To Know"
#25 Nov 8, 2010
"CitizenGlobal Gulf News Desk received photos that matched the report and are being published on Karl's blog today. Local fisherman in Alabama report sighting tremendous numbers of dolphins, sharks, and fish moving in towards shore as the initial waves of oil and dispersant approached in June. Many third- and fourth-generation fisherman declared emphatically that they had never seen or heard of any similar event in the past. Scores of animals were fleeing the leading edge of toxic dispersant mixed with oil. Those not either caught in the toxic mixture and killed out at sea, or fortunate enough to be out in safe water beyond the Source, died as the water closed in, and they were left no safe harbor. The numbers of birds, fish, turtles, and mammals killed by the use of Corexit will never be known as the evidence strongly suggests that BP worked with the Coast Guard, the Department of Homeland Security, the FAA, private security contractors, and local law enforcement, all of which cooperated to conceal the operations disposing of the animals from the media and the public.
The majority of the disposal operations were carried out under cover of darkness. The areas along the beaches and coastal Islands where the dead animals were collected were closed off by the U.S. Coast Guard. On shore, private contractors and local law enforcement officials kept off limits the areas where the remains of the dead animals were dumped, mainly at the Magnolia Springs landfill by Waste Management where armed guards controlled access. The nearby weigh station where the Waste Management trucks passed through with their cargoes was also restricted by at least one sheriff's deputies in a patrol car, 24/7.
Magnolia landfill during initial cleanup, courtesy of Press-Register, Connie Baggett
Robyn Hill, who was Beach Ambassador for the City of Gulf Shores until she became so ill she collapsed on the job one morning, was at a residential condominium property adjacent to the Gulf Shores beach when she smelled an overwhelming stench. She went to see where the odor was coming from and witnessed two contract workers dumping plastic bags full of dead birds and fish in a residential Waste Management dumpster, which was then protected by a security guard. Within five minutes, a Waste Management collection truck emptied the contents and the guard departed.
The oceans are empty, the skies tinged yellow by evaporating oil and toxic dispersant devoid of birds, dogs mysteriously have no fleas, and in an area usually besieged by mosquitoes, there is little need for repellent, and the usual trucks spraying are nowhere to be seen.
Shell Beach, in Hopedale, Louisiana, was one of the sites where carcasses of sperm whales were suspected of being destroyed. The operational end of the island was closed to unauthorized personnel and the airspace closed. The U.S. Coast Guard closed off all access from the Gulf. This picture shows the area as it was prepped to receive what were suspected to be whale carcasses for disposal."
From Huffington Post
Posted: August 4, 2010
“Truth to Power!”
Since: Apr 07
#29 Nov 9, 2010
In May, Mother Nature Network blogger Karl Burkart received a tip from an anonymous fisherman-turned-BP contractor in the form of a distressed text message, describing a near-apocalyptic sight near the location of the sunken Deepwater Horizon -- fish, dolphins, rays, squid, whales, and thousands of birds -- "as far as the eye can see," dead and dying.
According to his statement, which was later confirmed by another report from an individual working in the Gulf, whale carcasses were being shipped to a highly guarded location where they were processed for disposal.
“DEMOCRATS ARE JACKASSES”
Since: Oct 09
#30 Nov 9, 2010
You are kidding right? You the simpleton to has your head in the sand let alone you put the same damn people into office even though your state has te second hightest unemployment rate out west and a budget shortfall of 42 billion dollars and you have the nerve to make it out like I have a problem. Bottom line you freaking Liberals had your chance and all you did was increase our debt by 5 trillion dollars in almost 2 yrs. Yea the same morons that keep the lioke of Pelosi and Boxer. You all got your azzes whipe so now you resort to being sore losers because the days of free handouts is over.
#31 Nov 9, 2010
#32 Nov 12, 2010
"New Evidence Links BP to Health Crisis in the Gulf
Severe headaches, nausea, respiratory problems, burning eyes and throat, earache and chest pains -- and that's just the beginning. "
November 5, 2010 |
" BP's stock has already bounced back. The media has mostly moved on. But the long-term health impacts on Gulf Coast residents from the catastrophic oil spill are only beginning.
Exhibit A, says chemist Wilma Subra of the Louisiana Environmental Action Network, is a recent evaluation she performed of blood sample analyses from eight BP cleanup workers and residents in Alabama and Florida.
Originally collected on four separate dates throughout August, all the blood samples -- from three females, age 44, 46 and 51, and five males, age 30, 46, 48, 51 and 59 -- contained dangerously high levels of volatile organic chemicals found in BP crude oil, including Ethylbenzene, m,p-Xylene and Hexane, Subra explained during a wide-ranging interview with Alternet.
She clarified that the subjects whose blood was analyzed had been exposed to the oil for at least three full months before samples were collected on August 2, 3, 12 and 18.
Testing for the same chemical markers, Subra hunted down BP's crude fingerprints out in the field all along the coast, in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida's panhandle.
"I've found there's still huge amounts of BP crude oil on the sediment soils, in the wetlands, on the vegetation, and in the tissue in the oysters, crabs and mussels."
The acute health impacts of these chemicals include severe headaches, nausea, respiratory problems, burning eyes and throat, earache and chest pains.
Subra, who is also a microbiologist and the recipient of a 1999 MacArthur Fellows "genius grant" for her environmental work, pointed out that coastal residents have already entered an early phase of long-term exposure, where they're experiencing chronic effects such as liver, kidney and central nervous system damage, decreased lung function and heart disease.
"A whole host of different kinds of cancers" can follow, she added, including cancer of the lungs, liver, kidneys and blood.
The original analysis of these blood samples, which was performed by Metametrix Clinical Laboratory in Pensacola, Florida, wasn't evaluated for chemicals found in the dispersants used by BP. But Subra said those dispersant chemicals have many similar acute and long-term impacts.
Contrary to rosy statements by BP and Obama administration officials about the Gulf's swift restoration, her prognosis for those sickened by the oil spill is grim.
"The people that are sick are going to be sick for the rest of their lives," Subra said. "This isn't just a short time that they're sick and then they'll get well. These issues are long-term chronic health impacts that will linger."
She pointed out that 21 years after the Exxon Valdez oil spill, people in Alaska are still experiencing related health issues today.
BP has seen all of Subra's findings but hasn't responded.
"I've sent them the data," she said, "but I didn't really expect them to respond""
""The Louisiana Environmental Network [LEAN] actually provided protective gear and respirators," said Subra. "But the fishing community was told,'If you wear the respirator, YOU'RE FIRED.'"
Article continued here
#33 Nov 12, 2010
Continued from previous page
"How They Got Sick"
"In her meetings with coastal residents, cleanup workers and volunteer health care providers, Subra has seen firsthand the devastating effects of the mix of oil and dispersants on the health of vulnerable populations.
She explained that many people have become sick through contact with these chemicals while working to clean up the oil spill and blames BP directly for not only failing to provide proper protective gear, such as respirators, but also threatening to fire cleanup workers if they wore them.
"The Louisiana Environmental Network [LEAN] actually provided protective gear and respirators," said Subra. "But the fishing community was told,'If you wear the respirator, you're fired.'"
The workers, many of whom were fishermen who had joined the cleanup to earn money after the waters were despoiled and closed by the spill, had to choose between supporting their families or protecting themselves from chemicals found in the oil and dispersants.
But these fishermen also had another prime incentive to get those BP jobs.
"They desperately wanted those cleanup jobs to protect their natural resource, their estuaries and marshes," Subra noted. "So they thought that if they got out there to put out enough booms and do enough skimming that they would protect it enough that the resource would be there."
As a consequence, they've been made ill but most are too frightened to speak out because they're afraid to lose their jobs.
"Their wives spoke out early on and they were told if their wives continued to speak out they'd be fired, or if they spoke they'd be fired," said Subra, adding that, for this reason, LEAN had stepped in to help voice the concerns of the fishing community.
According to all the reports she's received, she confirmed that BP officials and BP contractors, not federal officials, leveled these threats against cleanup workers attempting to wear adequate protective gear or speaking publicly about the related health effects.
While BP's cleanup in the Gulf is winding down and many workers have already been laid off, a lot of them are still out there and this practice continues today, said Subra.
"So right now, the ones that are continuing to work out there are provided gloves and bootie covers or feet covers and that's it. No adequate protective gear, no respirators."
She added, "And they're just getting full of oil as they work. Routes of exposure are inhalation, ingestion and skin contact. And they're exposed to that every single day, the whole time they're out there."
But some coastal residents not involved in the cleanup have also been sickened by the oil and dispersants.
Even before the slick began moving inshore, Subra explained, many people were exposed to the aerosol formed when the crude was pushed up into the air by high winds and heavy seas.
As the dispersants began being applied, they mixed into this aerosol as well, followed then by the toxic brew of the controlled burns of oil on the water, all of which drifted to populations along the coast.
"A huge number of people on the coast were exposed to this aerosol," Subra said, adding that this issue has received even less attention than the health impact to the cleanup workers."
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