The emission from a leaking natural gas well off the Texas coast could no longer be seen from shore by Wednesday and was down to about 5 per cent of what it was the day before, officials said.
The well located on a platform about 5 kilometres offshore from Padre Island’s Bob Hall Pier was spewing a visible cloud of natural gas, water and condensate Tuesday, in addition to making a sound like a jet engine.
Texas General Land Office spokeswoman Karina Erickson said Wednesday morning that the release from the platform could no longer be seen from shore.
U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman Hailye Reynolds said the emission from the well was down to about 5 per cent of what it was on Tuesday. She said it was unclear why dramatic decrease happened.
Efforts to get to the unmanned platform owned by Houston-based Magellan E&P Holdings Inc. by boat have been stymied by rough waters from high winds.
A spokesman for Witt O’Brien’s, the company that’s handling Magellan’s operational response to the incident, said that as soon as weather permits, a crew will be sent by boat to make the repairs. The spokesman, Sean Fitzgerald, said they expect the repair to be completed some time over the weekend.
Officials so far have said the environmental impact has been minimal. The U.S. Coast Guard said a light natural gas sheen that surrounded the platform on Tuesday was gone by Wednesday and there hasn’t been an impact to the shoreline.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said Wednesday that so far air monitoring has not detected anything at levels of concern.
Last month four people were killed when a dredging vessel in the Port of Corpus Christi hit a submerged propane pipeline, causing an explosion.