Kevin Costner’s oil spill cleanup machine to tackle BP oil leak

A casual, candid portrait of Kevin Costner

Kevin Costner's oil spill cleanup machine promises to siphon 210,000 gallons of oil from water a day and is being tested on the BP oil leak. Wikimedia Commons photo.

The next project for Kevin Costner is the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico 2010. Costner and a team of scientists he is funding demonstrated a centrifuge machine to BP oil leak officials Thursday. BP will start testing the Kevin Costner oil spill cleanup machines next week. The gulf oil spill cleanup has been intensifying since an oil rig leased by BP exploded and sank on April 20. A gushing oil geyser on the ocean floor that has poured millions of gallons of crude into the gulf has yet to be capped. The spreading oil slick is fouling the Louisiana shoreline and has entered a current that will carry it to Florida and beyond.

Kevin Costner’s oil spill cleanup machine

The Kevin Costner oil spill cleanup machine was inspired by a past oil spill disaster. Costner said he was deeply affected by the environmental devastation of the Exxon Valdez oil spill, which dumped 11 million gallons of crude into Alaska’s Prince William Sound. ABC News reports that Costner  has contributed $15 million — no mere payday cash loan — over the past 15 years to fund a team of scientists developing the technology to clean up massive oil spills. Costner bankrolled a company called Ocean Therapy Solutions, which has created a powerful centrifuge that separates oil from water, stores it in a holding tank and sends the water, 99.9 percent purified, back into the ocean.

Oil spill cleanup ideas pouring in

The Kevin Costner oil spill cleanup machine was demonstrated to BP officials in New Orleans last week. At the time the New Orleans Times-Picayune mocked Costner’s centrifuge in an article, listing it along with a growing number of other ideas people have submitted to a BP oil spill hotline for addressing the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico 2010. Oil-eating bacteria, bombs and a device that resembles a giant shower curtain are among the 10,000 fixes people have proposed to counter the environmental disaster. The New York Times reports that BP had approved six of Ocean Therapy Solutions’ 32 machines for testing. The giant vacuum-like machines suck oil from water and separate it. Costner will also donate $26 million to the cause.

Is Ocean Therapy the Solution?

BP oil spill officials and Ocean Therapy Solutions are working to determine where to test the Kevin Costner’s oil spill machines. Depending on the results of the tests, the Ocean Therapy Solutions technology could be running within a week. Ocean Therapy Solutions claims the largest machine can separate 210,000 gallons of oil from in one day, which nearly matches the volume of oil that BP and the U.S. Coast Guard have estimated is pouring into the Gulf. Other Scientists have said that the volume of the BP oil leak is as much as 3.4 million gallons a day.

BP oil spill gushes away

The Kevin Costner oil spill cleanup machines are the latest approach in an evolving response to the massive, month long oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico 2010. The Associated Press reports that heavy oil is starting to clog Louisiana marshes, while out at sea huge plumes of partly submerged crude have reached the loop current, a powerful stream of ocean water that could transport the BP oil leak to Florida and beyond. BP officials said a procedure called a “top kill” that pumps heavy mud that could possibly plug the BP oil leak will not be ready until next week.