Starting as early as tonight, engineers are planning a two-part strategy that could plug the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, once and for all.
The first part, called a “static kill,” includes pouring cement from above into the well. Then comes the “bottom kill,” when engineers will put mud and cement into the well’s bottom through a relief well, a process that could take up to seven days.
A temporary cap is all that is currently keeping oil contained, and it has worked for two weeks. Officials expect to complete this last effort by the end of August.
Though these steps are promising, government officials warn that people shouldn’t get their hopes up. “We should not be writing any obituary for this event,” said Retired Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen.