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Reporting from Houma, La.Engineers have succeeded in stopping the flow of oil and gas into the Gulf of Mexico from a gushing BP well, the federal government's top oil spill commander, U.S. Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, said Thursday morning.

The "top kill" effort, launched Wednesday afternoon by industry and government engineers, has pumped enough drilling fluid to block all oil and gas from the well, Allen said. The pressure from the well is very low, but persists, he said.

Once engineers have reduced the well pressure to zero, they will begin to pump cement into the hole to entomb the well. To help that effort, he said, engineers are also pumping some debris into the blowout preventer at the top of the well.

Allen said one ship that was pumping fluid into the well has run out of the fluid, or "mud," and that a second ship is on the way. He said he was encouraged by the progress.

"We'll get this under control," he said.

Yippee! Nothing after the break as this is a stub diary! (And note the timing coincides, conveniently -- wink -- with Obama's press conference today). Next...

Apparently, President Spock finally managed to convince Mr. Scott to lend his engineering expertise to the operation. After a few rounds of "I canna' change the laws of phyziks!" -- he finally figured out a way to re-gnite the dilithium crystal warp eng -- erm -- cap the well.

UPDATE: The phrase "Top Kill" will now enter into the popular lexicon. I am eagerly anticipating the take of editorial cartoonists playing on the concept -- particulay with respect to shutting up rightwing blowhards like Sarah Palin, Glenn beck or Rush Limbaugh.

UPDATE: BP is trying to tamp down enthusiasm and make sure people know that this thing is not over yet.

The unified command tackling the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico cannot confirm or deny a Los Angeles Times report that BP (BP.L)'s "top kill" operation to plug its leaking well has succeeded, a spokeswoman said on Thursday.

"At the moment, we can't confirm or deny anything," she told Reuters, when asked about the Latimes.com report which cited Coast Guard Admiral Thad Allen. BP shares rose more than five percent in London trading.

Keep your fingers crossed.

ADDENDUM: To paraphrase Jimmy Buffet:

Living on spongecake...
Watchin' the sun bake...
All of the sea life covered in oil...

Some people claim that BP or Obama're to blame...
But I know...
Its our own damn fault.

Originally posted to Hesiod on Thu May 27, 2010 at 06:25 AM PDT.

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