The Press-Register collected samples of the oil about a mile from the well site on Tuesday and provided them to Ed Overton and Scott Miles, chemists with Louisiana State University.
The pair did much of the chemical work used by federal officials to fingerprint the BP oil, known as MC252.
â€œAfter examining the data, I think itâ€™s a dead ringer for the MC252 oil, as good a match as Iâ€™ve seen,â€ Overton wrote in an email to the newspaper. â€œMy guess is that it is probably coming from the broken riser pipe or sunken platform. ... However, it should be confirmed, just to make sure there is no leak from the plugged well.â€
In an emailed statement, BP officials wrote that the company had a vessel stationed at the site all day Thursday but never saw any oil.
During BPâ€™s inspection, the wind was blowing up to 10 mph, and waves were up to 2 feet high. Scientists said that even a light chop would likely have obscured the small sheens emerging every few seconds.
By contrast, the wind was still and seas were flat and glassy Tuesday when the newspaper located the oil.
â€œThere is still no evidence that the oil came from the Macondo well,â€ BP officials wrote in the emailed statement.
it may be the gulf, but BP is in denial