Friday, May 15, 2015

Drilling Mud "STP" Questions for Alameda Power

"Did anyone at AMP question why CTI's bid showed a substantially shorter duration than others?"

Suspect #2 in my search for the cause of the 2015 Seabird Massacre is a 2014 horizontal directional drilling (HDD) project to lay power conduit to Coast Guard Island from Alameda under the Estuary downstream from where a plume of greyish-tan sludge was reported prior to the massacre of hundreds of seabirds by a mysterious grey goo clinging to their bodies, causing death by hypothermia.

Laboratory analysis by California Fish and Wildlife of the Mystery Goo matches a type of oily "STP"-like* drilling mud additive that accelerates the rate of penetration (ROP) in earth-boring projects such as this drilling mud nightmare.

Drilling mud nightmare

Following is a list of questions I submitted today to Alameda Power about the 2014 CGI conduit drilling project.
"Previously asked:
1. Dates drilling began and ended.
2. What type drilling mud and drilling mud additives were used.

3. Please enumerate if exceptions were made to generally-accepted engineering standards for environmental protection.
4. Were exceptions made to City standards for bidding? If so, how were they justified?
5. What, if any, previous experience did California Trenchless Inc (CTI) have with directional drilling projects of this type and scale?
6. How did CTI control and dispose of waste drilling mud? (The on-line contract documents specified a "mud pit" for retaining waste drilling mud, but there was none observed during the several days I watched the drilling during my daily walks.)
7. What geological data did CTI and AMP use to ensure environmental safety, e.g., the nature and composition of the subterranean geologic formation?
8. Did CTI or AMP do post-project testing for drilling mud leakage? If so, what were the results?
9. What level of on-site supervision did AMP have throughout the project? (The drilling was only yards away from AMP's headquarters.)
10. How otherwise did AMP assure themselves of contract compliance?
11. Did AMP perform on-site testing regarding environmental risks such as frac-out and waste mud leakage and disposal?
12. Do AMP and CTI have insurance coverage for environmental risk?
13. Did anyone at AMP question why CTI's bid showed a substantially shorter duration than others? (The use of a drilling mud additive would have accelerated the ROP [rate of penetration], reducing cost by speeding up the project, but would also increase environmental risk.)
Some of the information may not be readily available and can be provided later, but please provide what you can early next week.
I live nearby and am available should my assistance be needed.
Thanks again for your cooperation."

We will get to the bottom of this.

*STP is a popular additive for motor oil that is advertised to reduce friction.


  1. If you were to try to use a non-hammer type drill, you would have a hard time penetrating the hardened concretehere

  2. Oh, definitely it was very bad to do this work... But I hope that everything will be fine.

  3. Actual problems now for the planet as a whole. Thank you for having people interested in solving such problems.


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