Sunday, October 14, 2012

Louisiana Sinkhole Shakes, Grows, Flares

Jeff Dubinsky
There's lots of activity down in Assumption Parish, Louisiana - but it's mostly geological. The sinkhole has grown about four acres since it started at the beginning of August. That's on top of the thousands of earthquakes - oops, "tremors" - recorded by the USGS. According to the article:
Last week, Dr. Raoult Ratard, State Epidemiologist with Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals Office (DHH) of Public Health, sent an environmental data report of the Bayou Corne oil and gas sinkhole event to Assumption Parish President Martin S. Triche, stating that methane, detected in the area industrial water wells, presents a potential health risk, a "Type 2 of fire/explosion.”
Meanwhile, about 150 families remain evacuated from their homes - they were told to leave August 4. Now, officials are warning people about the presence of methane, and some are wondering just how safe it is to stay in their homes.

Jeff Dubinsky flew over the sinkhole yesterday and took a series of photos. He also noted the intense petroleum fumes and odors:
... the heaviest and strongest I have ever experienced in all my time in Louisiana. Perhaps even worse still was that the odor was hovering directly over the community... 


  1. But hydrofracking is so safe......not.

  2. As of right now fracking is NOT one of the reasons for the methane (natural gas) bubbling and the sinkhole. It looks like Texas Brine washed out the under ground cavern too close to the side wall of the salt dome and the cavern wall feel into the cavern causing the release the methane from natural deposits and cause the sinkhole.

    1. you are correct. However, some salt domes are being converted to storage facilities for gas that was obtained through fracking - which could account for the previous comment.

    2. Not all (natural gas) methane is the result of fracking. In a lot of places methane is mixed in with crude oil. The salt caverns are NOT only used to hold methane but also butane, crude oil (US Govt stock pile of crude), and other chemicals that are NOT salt desolving.

      The caverns are washed out to get the salt out which is called brine for use in chemical plants--if you have bleach in your house it is one of the products that is produced from brine.