Louisiana Sinkhole Updates, Technology, and Theory



Everything everybody thought they knew about the Louisiana Sinkhole changed with the latest ‘Belch’ event on January 19th, 2013, for the geology that existed prior, no longer exists.

This is a whole new animal we are now dealing with. With an overburden of water, the combination of the ‘thumper trucks’ performing a Vertical Seismic Profile (VSP) for the five days prior, and then Friday the ‘T-Rex’ Tri-Axial set off a chain of events, that has moved around the rock structures, and allowed new migration zones for the formation gas, and even the bedded gas from the salt edge, (whatever is left of it at the top), and that the prior VSP readings are now completely useless.

If ‘Officials’ had backed off when they noticed the seismic events, and the casing pressure rising at the Oxy 3A OBW to over 923 psig, then the event would have settled within days. Instead they kept it up, then proceeded to finish it off with the T-Rex tri-axial array, and render any and all readings taken to date useless.

Nothing is the same underneath this disaster area as it was. If this had been performed in September, then this whole situation may have been mitigated by now.


“Hoffpauir, a technical staff associate with the University of Texas’ Geotechnical Engineering Program, said the diesel-powered T-Rex, which has 6-feet tall wheels, can send seismic waves into the ground in three dimensions, or tri-axially, from a central vibrating plate.

“It’s the only one in the United States” that can do that, Hoffpauir said.”


“The waves started at a low frequency and quickly picked up speed, sounding something like a car engine revving from low to high revolutions. From behind the well, mild vibrations could be felt in the earth at the lowest frequencies but they dissipated at the highest frequencies.”


That is precisely how you set up resonance, and this after, five days of;
“A less versatile type of vibroseis truck, called a thumper truck, was used recently, Texas Brine officials said.”

“Texas Brine plans to do the most intensive seismic testing of all, 3-D seismic tests across a swath of the Bayou Corne area next month.

Expected to deliver a picture 7,000 feet deep, these tests may show whether any feared voids exist underground and the location of oil and gas traps.”

What form of 3-D testing or with what tools is not being disclosed at this time.

As this author reported on various websites on January 20, 2013;

Well venting gas is beyond belief in its surge! Low Pressure, high volume.



Great pictures of the damages at Well Pad 3, and they are plugging and Abandoning MRAA#3. That’s the aquifer vent and monitoring well close to Oxy 3.

This is ORW 12


OXY 3 Well Pad is royally screwed.


This also means there was extensive rock and possibly salt movement during this ‘belch’. It’s found a new path for the gas to migrate. Lots of rocks have shifted and changed position. This is not good news for the Crosstex Cavern 2.

More rock movements are being shown on all borehole heli’s and this event is not over. It is building up for another event…mark my words. This was not a burp, it was a belch and did a lot of damage. I would not be surprised if the salt is now laying twenty to thirty yards further west now and brining out, taking with it a good portion of the stability of the west side of the dome.

Many were claiming it was impossible that the Vertical Seismic Profile, along with the overburden of water over the thin layer of soils and claytard, to be causing the seismic activity that I based my earlier warnings upon.

Seems Dr. Stephen Horton, with the University of Memphis doesn’t agree with the naysayers.

“Recent seismic activity is possibly contributable to VSP activity or the unusually high water, according
to Dr. Horton (1/16/13)”


(Page 15)


Seismic Visual of the Event on January 19th, 2013 from Helicorder LA08.


Many questions have arisen as to why it was vital months ago to find out what the water flow rates were and what path it had taken. If there was just one water source in, then it would just brine an area out, no big deal. That does not seem to be the case here. Allow me to postulate..

First, we have the fracked out cavern full of brine spilling outwards towards the formation waters that is pushed upwards under 7-9000 ft. of overburden pressures, which dilutes the brine and pushes it with ever increasing frequency back towards the breached cavern zone.. Once brined out the pressures force the Formation Waters upwards and eroding the Salt Flank in pockets.. how far? We don’t know.

Then we have the subsidence area that has punctured into the aquifer, and a blowout of the bottom of the aquifer where the caprock broke off is just about a certainty, or there would be no communication with the oil formation, gas, and waters below, nor would methane be able to swell the aquifer.

So we have infiltration from the top of the salt rock from the bottom of the aquifer and under a part of the caprock, (entry from the broken section of caprock), which is most likely brining out into the voids, allowing fractures and large pieces of salt rock to continue breaking off and tumbling below. This in turn gives more space for the waters to continue eastward infiltration and salt rock fractures.

Evidence for this is shown by the recent cracking of the Oxy 3 Well Pad. So, we have infiltration from above, the west side flank, and beneath, with crushed rock and liquids banging around and changing the geology daily.

So, high pressure liquids underneath, pressuring upwards on the sides, and overburden pressures squeezing the aquifer where the caprock broke off, and nothing but water saturating the whole of the overburden that could easily be migrating into these fractures from above the aquifer and any other damaged sections around these cavern wellheads causing salt blowouts in-between.

Remember the funnel of Lake Oxy 3 is determined by nothing but natural materials and fill, and not by a Cement Casing as a Well is…. Make your own mind up, but I believe this theory will be borne out by the surveys they will never allow us to see, at least not in a timely fashion.


Many of these questions could easily have been answered early on by using a very well known tool and just what Representative Joe Harrison, (La. District 51), was stating at the November 08, 2012 Residents Meeting.

Louisiana State Representative Joe Harrison:

“I’m gonna tell you something, the infrared satellite vision that they have, these things can tell you more than you ever imagined. I learned a lot about that during the BP thing. At the base where they’re at, they can tell you more things and actual chemical compound makeups with their equipment than I ever imagined they could. And they’re doing that right now, it’s being monitored.”

Resident 1: They’re doing it through infrared?

Harrison: Yes ma’am they’re just not giving us the information.

Resident 2: Who is they?

Harrison: The federal government […] This thing just seems to escalate […] They need somebody to tie it all together […] It needs to be declared a disaster. Once it’s declared a disaster, a whole new set of rules and regulations are enforced. […]”


What I truly believe Rep. Harrison was talking about is a very well known technology called radar interferometry taken by the VHP Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR), you can learn all about it here:


InSAR’s monitors ground deformation, as well as ground based technology, taking gravity measurements using a Scintrex CG-5 gravimeter, such as those used just after the dramatic slough in of the Daisetta, Texas, May 7, 2008 Sinkhole. (Footnote: 1)



There are many such technologies available that can give the residents and the rest of the Public some much needed answers about the voids underneath, and the topography and low level subsidence over the whole of the salt dome.

Yet, it’s the methane, total dissolved solids, total dissolved chlorides and methane bearing waters with hydrocarbons that are being transmitted all over the area, and all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico, that makes this a National Emergency, and a tragedy, ecologically, environmentally, as well as the human toll upon people West, East, and South, of Bayou Corne that are being poisoned even as we speak.

It is time for answers, and since that cannot be achieved at the State level and it has been shown that this local disaster clearly qualifies as a Federal Disaster Area, then Public pressure needs to bear down upon ALL PARTIES INVOLVED, until such an emergency is declared.

It is time for this farce to end.

Footnote 1:






Louisiana Sinkhole and the Love Canal Connection



In the early morning hours of August 3, 2012, and after months of continuous tremors, and ‘bubbling sites’ of ‘swamp gas’, a portion of earth subsided and created what many locals just call, “The Stinkhole” in Bayou Corne, Louisiana operated by Texas Brine, LLC, and leased by and for the usage of the Occidental Chemical Corporation, dubbed in official records as Oxy Geismar #3 brine well.

For months on end residents complained of earthquakes and methane seeps in the swamps, and were told neither existed by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, and USGS.  Stubborn residents insisted differently, which spurred an investigation of the ‘bubble sites’ by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, and the Department of Environmental Quality, as well as Dr. Stephen Horton of Memphis State University to investigate and confirm resident’s suspicions of earthquakes.

This is by far, not the first incident in this area, known as the Napoleonville Salt Dome, with Gulf South Pipelines, and their Magnolia Operating Facility contained within, and the rest dominated by huge corporate interests, such as Occidental Chemical Corporation, Dow Chemical, Entergy/Koch Bros., Crosstex, Exxon-Mobil, K/D/S Promix, and a bevy of other big names in the pipeline, storage, and production of natural gas, and the drilling of oil and natural gas found in the oil sands surrounding the salt dome.

What many do not realize is that Occidental Chemicals acquired Hooker Chemical, and indeed the ruptured cavern ‘Oxy 3’ was once named ‘Hooker 8’. This is important because neither Hooker Chemical, nor Occidental are strangers to controversy or being entangled in the total destruction of entire communities and shown a total indifference towards the environment and the residential concerns of toxic health effects.

“Ending a 16-year legal case that became synonymous with toxic pollution, the Clinton administration announced Thursday that Occidental Chemical Corp. has agreed to pay $129 million to the federal government for its cost of cleaning up the Love Canal neighborhood near Niagara Falls.”

“For 11 years, beginning in 1942, Hooker Chemical and Plastics Corp., which Occidental purchased in 1968, poured about 20,000 tons of hazardous chemicals into the abandoned canal in upstate New York. Hooker sold its property for $1 in 1953 to the Niagara Falls school board.”

Source: http://articles.latimes.com/1995-12-22/news/mn-16926_1_love-canal

Below is the short story of the Love Canal.

As the good Doctor in Part 2 states, chemical solvents such as benzene, toulene, xylene, are all known cancer causing agents, cause liver disease, and even central nervous system disorders. The same chemicals and so many more have been found in the ‘sinkhole’ and industrial water wells in Bayou Corne, and has been known by the EPA, LDNR, LDEQ,Texas Brine LLC, (which is synonymous with Occidental Chemical Corporation), and all other actors involved, except the residents themselves, for years.

Below is a screen capture of just one page of the Water Well Report:



Many of these high value chemicals are known carcenogens, and according to nearly every resident I have spoken with, reports smelling the gases in the air, as ‘rotten eggs’. “If you smell it, you are inhaling it.” is the general rule.

As one resident that lived through the 2003 Gulf South/Dow methane disaster, and was relocated to Bayou Corne, Shelly Hernandez states, “My mom had seven children, and none of us can conceive..Infertility, cancer..my mom died of cancer…”

Please watch this video to the very end, for what this lady imparts to us all is chilling.

No reports have been found that informs the residents of Assumption Parish exactly what chemicals are emitted from the Lake over the sinkhole, which has now grown to the extent that it is communicating with the whole community via canals, as well as adjacent bayous, but the reports we do have from the industrial water wells tells a horrible story.

The parallels may not seem obvious, but when you have open waters, and pools kept close by the industrial water wells, such as are kept in the general vicinity, and a sinkhole transmitting oil and hydrocarbons, as well as methane, and who knows what else…. then you start to see the harmful health effects that were also suffered by those involved in the Love Canal, and as in the previous 1978 Hooker/Occidental Chem. debacle, are being completely ignored.

It took years before anyone paid attention to the Love Canal tragedy. Can we all in good conscience, ignore the victims of Belle Rose, Bayou Corne, Pierre Part, and possibly even as far as Napoleonville, again?

No matter what anyone may say about President Carter, at least he did not hesitate to declare the ‘Love Canal’ a federal disaster, whereas Obama has basically ignored the newest Love Canal, known as ‘Assumption Parish, La.’ Even the State’s own Governor Bobby Jindal refuses to visit the area, although begged to do so by his constituents, and the mainstream media also refuses to cover this disaster of unknown proportions.

While the rest of the country may be celebrating the holidays and looking forward to the New Year; the residents of Bayou Corne, and Belle Rose, wonder if the New Year will bring some answers and possibly relief, or just more political covering of all posteriors?

Before you dismiss this story as not being relevant to your world and go back to your everyday lives, consider this quote within the LA Times news article above….

“It is an issue with wide impact. The EPA says that one in four Americans, including 10 million children under the age of 12, lives within four miles of a toxic waste dump.”

What is it going to take to get someone to notice the plight of the remaining people, and of the children who wonder if they will even see a New Year?

December 24, 2012 Flyover of Bayou Corne “Oxy 3 Sinkhole” by Wings of Care.


This is Occidental Chemical Corp. and Texas Brine’s answer to the Resident’s that want to escape this nightmare!


Dangers of Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) and the Louisiana Sinkhole

According to Assumption Parish Police Jury;

Texas Brine has reported to parish officials low levels of H2S coming from the cavern well. DNR, Shaw representatives, and the OEP Director went to the site to validate Texas Brine’s reading and found no levels of H2S on their monitors. Readings will be repeated in the morning when Texas Brine flows the cavern well again. Should H2S be present at that time, appropriate actions will be taken. We will keep you updated.

Please note that no H2S readings were picked up on the community air monitors.


Also, take note that they also announced that Lake Oxy 3 has grown another Twenty Five Feet, so I thought it might be nice to know a little more about H2S and this was also requested by one of my readers. Thanks to Wiki, and Nora for the information contained in this article.

Hydrogen sulfide (British English: hydrogen sulphide) is the chemical compound with the formula H2S. It is a colorless, very poisonous, flammable gas with the characteristic foul odor of rotten eggs. It often results from the bacterial breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen, such as in swamps and sewers; this process is commonly known as anaerobic digestion. It also occurs in volcanic gases, natural gas, and some well waters. The human body produces small amounts of H2S and uses it as a signaling molecule.

Hydrogen sulfide is slightly heavier than air; a mixture of H2S and air is explosive. Hydrogen sulfide and oxygen burn with a blue flame to form sulfur dioxide (SO2) and water. In general, hydrogen sulfide acts as a reducing agent.

Small amounts of hydrogen sulfide occur in crude petroleum, but natural gas can contain up to 90%.[7] Volcanoes and some hot springs (as well as cold springs) emit some H2S, where it probably arises via the hydrolysis of sulfide minerals, i.e. MS + H2O → MO + H2S


Presence of H2S in oilfields

Oil and natural gas are the products of the thermal conversion of decayed organic matter (called kerogen) trapped in sedimentary rocks. Methane (CH4) is the main component of natural gas, comprising 70 to 90%, while other gaseous hydrocarbons, butane, propane, and ethane, account for up to 20%. Naturally occurring contaminants present in natural gas and which have to be removed at natural gas processing facilities include water vapour, sand, oxygen, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and rare gases such as helium and neon. High-sulphur kerogens release H2S during decomposition, which stays trapped within the oil and gas deposits and is frequently encountered in oilfields, often to high levels, as in west Texas (Schlumberger, 2007).

During oil exploration and production, H2S may enter drilling muds from subsurface formations and is also generated by sulphate-reducing bacteria in stored muds. Other sources of natural H2S emissions are volcanoes and geothermal sources such as hot springs. Natural gas, or any other gas mixture which contains significant amounts of H2S, is generally termed ‘sour’ if there are more than 5.7 milligrams of H2S per cubic meter of natural gas. This is equivalent to approximately 4 ppm by volume (http://www.naturalgas.org/naturalgas/processing_ng.asp).

Although the terms ‘acid gas’ and ‘sour gas’ are often used interchangeably, a sour gas is any gas that contains H2S in significant amounts, whereas an acid gas is any gas that contains significant amounts of acidic gases such as CO2 or SO2. CO2 by itself, therefore, is an acid gas but it is not a sour gas.

The H2S is removed (‘scrubbed’) from the sour gas by a process commonly referred to as ‘sweetening’ at what are termed desulphurization plants. Removal of H2S is normally done by absorption in an amine solution, while other methods include carbonate processes, solid bed absorbents (including solid desiccants like iron sponges) and physical absorption. The ‘amine process’ (also called the Girdler process) is used in 95% of US gas sweetening operations (http://www.naturalgas.org/naturalgas/processing_ng.asp).

In this process, sour gas is passed through a tower containing the amine solution, which has an affinity for sulphur and which absorbs it. Two main amine solutions are used: monoethanolamine (MEA) and diethanolamine (DEA). The emerging gas is virtually free of sulphur compounds and the H2S can be removed from the amine solution, allowing it to be reused to treat more sour gas.

The presence of H2S in an oilfield and, if exposed to the gas during oil and gas production, its possible impacts on human health, is a potential concern for potential UGS operators. H2S is a toxic, colourless gas that is odourless at high concentrations but has a smell of rotten eggs in low concentrations. Because H2S is heavier than air, it tends to accumulate in low-lying areas. It is an extremely poisonous gas and a few seconds of exposure in concentrations of anywhere between 750 and 10,000 ppm can prove lethal to people and animals. However, the effect of H2S depends on duration, frequency and intensity of exposure and the susceptibility of the individual

(Schlumberger, 2007). http://www.glossary.oilfield.slb.com/Display.cfm?Term=hydrogen sulfide

Research conducted at the University of Southern California Medical Facility has established nervous system damage can occur even at concentrations in air as low as 1 ppm (Chilingar & Endres, 2005).

H2S is hazardous to rig workers and is also corrosive, causing sulphide stress-corrosion cracking of metals, which may require costly special production equipment such as stainless steel tubing. A recent study concluded that H2S “will eventually destroy the integrity of both the steel and cement relied upon to prevent gas migration, including abandonments performed to the current standards of the DOGGR [Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources]. The corrosive conditions of hydrogen sulphide are well known, and have defied engineering solutions.”(Chilingar & Endres, 2005). Whilst this may be an extreme conclusion, it highlights the importance of proper procedures and monitoring of the presence and effects of H2S on plant and infrastructure. H2S is a recognized problem, with established procedures to mitigate it.

Incident at Gasfield, Chongquing, China

An incident in China illustrates the potentially deadly effects of H2S release during production from a gasfield. The disaster took place at the Chuandongbei gas field in Gao Qiao town in the north eastern part of Chongqing province. The incident involved a gas well blowout, which occurred at 10:00 pm on Tuesday, 23 December 2003 and resulted in the release of natural gas and H2S. According to press reports, the accident occurred as a drilling team was working on the 400 meter deep well and sent toxic fumes (sour gas – a high concentration of natural gas and (H2S) shooting 30 metres out of a failed well (UNEP: http://www.uneptie.org/pc/apell/disasters/china_well/china.htm#impacts )

The China Daily newspaper described the tragedy as “the worst of its kind in China’s history”.

“The poisonous gas hovering in the air made an area of 25 square kilometres a death zone, as many villagers were intoxicated by the fumes in their sleep”. Worst hit was the village of Xiaoyang next to the gas well, where 90% of the residents were killed, “many having died in their sleep or were too old to escape” (WSWS, 2003).

The incident was reported in Lloyd’s Casualty Week for 23rd Jan 2003 as follows: “officers investigating a gas leak which killed 243 people in western China have arrested three oil company workers on suspicion of dismantling safety features and mishandling drilling equipment……one of China’s worst industrial accidents…..the investigation has forced the resignation of a vice president of state owned China National Petroleum Corporation. …….The accident sent a deadly cloud of poisonous hydrogen sulphide over nearby villages in a poor mountainous area. Villagers died in their sleep or were struck down while trying to flee. More than 9,000 people were treated for injuries and 60,000 were forced to evacuate the area. Hospitals reported…… 396 were still being treated for injuries, several of them in critical condition.”