When it comes to preventing future oil spills from wrecking our coastlines and underwater ecosystems, Kevin Costner is thinking big. Like “nearly $1 billion” big.
The actor/entrepreneur testified before a congressional panel yesterday and pitched a $895 million dollar plan he wants the federal government to adopt to combat future threats akin to the BP oil spill this past summer.
“Our choices are clear,” Costner told members of a House committee. “We can choose to enlist a fleet of 6,000 vessels that are hampered by their lack of training and preparedness or we can create a dedicated fleet of 190 state-of-the-art vessels.”
If adopted, Costner’s plan would run through a company he created, Blue Planet Solutions. Naturally, that company would then equip those vessels with the centrifuge technology created by Costner’s firm Ocean Therapy Solutions. Guess they’re not looking for outside bids…
According to The Times-Picayune, Costner’s plan differs from the $1 billion rapid-response proposal announced earlier this year by a consortium of oil companies in that it directly deal with oil hitting the ocean surface. The competing proposal would “redesign existing blowout prevention equipment used in deepwater drilling to better capture oil in the event of an accident.” Costner calls their response plan “nonexistent”.
“They never seem to go to that place the public wants: overwhelming response,” Costner told The Times-Picayune via phone. “‘Adequate’ is the word that is their order of the day, and it’s just not the way to do business when so much is at stake,” he said.
With billions already spent cleaning up the Gulf and sealing the oil well — perhaps both plans would merit implementing. But logistics remain — not to mention where a 190-boat fleet might reside, never mind maintenance, crew, etc. No doubt, however, you can expect Costner to continue to have the government’s ear (much to the chagrin of others in the oil filtration industry) and be heavily involved somehow going forward.