Small Slick Visible At Site of Chevron’s Blowout and Fire off Nigeria

Teri noticed a small slick on today’s Envisat ASAR radar satellite image covering the site of Chevron’s blowout and fire off the coast of Nigeria. We measure it at about 18.6 kilometers long, extending about 39 square kilometers.  It appears to be very thin.  Assuming the slick is, on average, one micron thick, that amounts to about 9,500 gallons of some oily substance — possibly unburned natural gas condensate, since this was reported by Chevron to be a gas exploration well that was not creating any oil slick:

Detail from Envisat ASAR image taken February 8, 2012. Location of blowout marked by rig symbol.  Image courtesy European Space Agency.

This MODIS image taken on February 3 (and this one from February 5) shows the ongoing fire where the KS Endeavor drill rig used to be, before it toppled over and sank:

Matching detail from a NASA/MODIS image taken February 3, 2012 showing continuing fire (red spot) at site of Chevron blowout.  Image courtesy MODIS Rapid Response Team.