Did someone plug the hole yet?
BP PLC is pushing to fix its runaway Gulf oil well by July 27, possibly weeks before the deadline the company is discussing publicly, in a bid to show investors it has capped its ballooning financial liabilities, according to company officials.
At the same time
, BP is readying a series of backup plans in case its current operations go awry. These include connecting the rogue well to existing pipelines in two nearby underwater gas and oil fields, according to company and administration officials.
Much of the additional planning has been pushed by the U.S. government, which has urged BP to develop what one official called the "backup to the backup plan." Both BP and the federal government
are concentrating on their next steps, particularly because of uncertainty caused by the imminent hurricane season and the protracted political and financial damage caused by the endless spill.
Both BP and the Coast Guard continue to state publicly they're aiming to have a fix in place in early to mid-August. BP has discussed its backup plans only with administration officials, who in turn have briefed President Barack Obama.
Good thing Obama has been briefed.