Water samples off Pensacola Beach indicate toxic gas mixture

Nick Doms's picture

The bubbling surf on Pensacola Beach indicates the presence of toxic chemicals in the water that evaporate in the air. While initially such was attributed to bubbles of methane gas, it is now clear that a chemical compound was formed between Corexit and methane at the bottom of the Gulf called 2-ethylhexane-1,3-diol.

BP has been spraying Corexit at the bottom of the ocean floor since the collapse of the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform which resulted in a break of the riser pipe. While Corexit is sprayed over the oil spill and would normally adhere to the oil molecules, the Corexit transforms into a gaseous state due to the water temperatures and easily forms a new chemical compound.

This is easy to explain from a pure chemical perspective taking into consideration the chemical structure of both products.

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Corexit is known in chemical labs as C6H14O2, while methane gas is known as CH4. Combining both in an oil environment results in a new compound C8H18O2 commonly referred to as 2-ethylhexane-1,3-diol.

The new gaseous chemical compound will rise to the surface of the Gulf and find its way to the Coastal beaches where it will bubble in the surf line and get airborne. The gas in itself is not dangerous in water but once inhaled poses a threat to human beings.

Once inhaled, the gas will store itself in the pulmonary alveoli where it will find its way into the bloodstream through natural osmosis. The Corexit, or its main component 2-butoxyethanol, will adhere to the red blood cells causing hemolysis and damaging liver and kidneys permanently.

The first signs of inhalation and extended exposure are sore throats, respiratory problems, nausea, dizziness, headaches and disorientation. This is not surprising because the chemical is also a small component in chloroform, although in very small particles that are not harmful.

Nalco Holding Company, the manufacturer of Corexit9500 and Corexit9527, denies that their product is toxic and helps to encapsulate the oil molecules so they can sink to the bottom of the ocean for natural degrading by bacteria. This is a fair and accurate statement but that is not the chemical reaction that occurs at the bottom of the ocean.

The company also states that the Corexit formula is a trade secret and has never been published, however the EPA lists the exact ingredients of Corexit as a matter of public information.

Swimming in the waters off Pensacola Beach is not recommended, but breathing the air is what may cause permanent damage.

Written by Nick Doms © 2010, all rights reserved


Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Nearly every word in this is wrong (without commenting on the grammar). Start with the most basic thing. C6H14O2 + CH4 -> C7H18O2 or C6H14O2 + 2 CH4 -> C8H22O2 or something else. The stoichiometry isn't even right.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Next time you wish to comment, identify yourself. Anything less is not acceptable. What you omit, probably because you were busy analyzing grammar rather than content, which is what most ignorant people do, is the existence of carbon molecules in crude. Do you understand now, or do you wish to take a class in organic chemistry and English?

Submitted by mary from pensacola (not verified) on
WHY?! aren't we burning the patches of oil BEFORE the hit land?? expert after expert says that is the singular solution but NO news is printing that. We know it is coming from miles out...lets burn it then I dont' want to set 40% of the Gulf on fire, just the large patches approaching land...studies show no toxic fumes, infact no fumes at all after 150 yards. WHY ISN"T SOMEONE BURNING THE OIL?? Scooping it up is NOT working...but plenty of companies are making money from BP...controlled burns cheap and effective...

Submitted by Cadfael (not verified) on
Did you not see the burning of the oilfields by saddam Hussein? The black poisonous clouds travelled hundreds of miles! You want to inflict that on even more people? Who's studies? Prove your sources ..if you can, which I very much doubt! How can you be so stupid with only one head? How can you talk such BS with only one mouth? This gutter journalism is only matched by saalem news ... a comic of a rag if ever there was one!!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
There needs to be done testing by the EPA immediately to verify this is true or not true or even by an independent scientist, as long as it is verified as true.

Submitted by Maresha (not verified) on
I've seen red streak lines along the sand where the tide has been, and it looks exactly like the color of Serratia bacteria. I then consulted my Microbiology text, and it said that Serratia is used industrially in the productions of 2-3 butanediol. Is that chemical in Corexit, or can the chemistry occuring in the Gulf with the water, and the dispersants create this chemical? I need a chemist to answer this. Serratia causes respiratory distress too.

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