Nightly News   |  June 16, 2010

BP launches second system to collect oil

BP said Wednesday it increased its oil siphoning capacity to be able to capture another 5,000-10,000 barrels a day, for a total of 28,000 barrels a day—less than half the estimated amount pouring into the Gulf. NBC's Tom Costello reports.

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HOLT: While all this was going on, out in the gulf itself BP started up a second system to dispose of some of that oil spewing out of that pipe. NBC 's Tom Costello is in Venice , Louisiana , with the latest from there. Tom :

TOM COSTELLO reporting: Hi, Lester. This is called the Q400 . BP says it is now able to siphon even more oil, about five to 10,000 barrels a day, but they don't have the storage space for it so they're actually burning it. So that now brings the total containment, if you will, to about 28,000 barrels a day. But that is less than half of the 60,000 barrels a day, of course, that independent and government scientists now estimate could be spewing from that pipe at the bottom of the ocean. Meantime, we continue to see oil washing across the gulf. It appears to be moving to the east towards Mississippi , Alabama and Florida . And on the Florida coast today, south of Pensacola , they captured a huge tar ball, an accumulation of tar that the Coast Guard estimates weighed about one ton. Also, this news is just coming in. NOAA has just expanded the closed fishing zone and federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico off of the panhandle. Nearly 81,000 square miles are now closed to fishing. That is about a third of the total federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico closed to fishing. Back to you.