A U of I Connection to the Gulf Oil Cleanup?


It's estimated that 140 million gallons of oil have spilled into the Gulf of Mexico since April 20, and a number of new technologies are being tried to contain or clean the mess along hundreds of miles of shoreline.

A giant oil skimmer called "A Whale," owned by a Taiwanese businessman has arrived on the scene. Actor Kevin Costner still wants to introduce something he calls a water separation machine. And now, a Texas businessman with a connection to the University of Idaho says he's got a pretty good solution to help clean up the shorelines.

A year ago, the University of Idaho successfully tested something called an Advanced Drying Trailer. It's used to rapidly dry wood chips, and last year researchers at the U of I dried and loaded dozens of trailers of rapidly dried woody biomass material, to be used in their steam boiler plant.

Advanced Drying Trailers at U of I
  • advancedtrailer.com
  • Advanced Drying Trailers at U of I

This week, BP Oil ordered tons of mulch wood products to be used to absorb oil on beaches and marshes. And now, BP is asking the same company that worked with the U of I to submit an application to help with their clean up process.

"This is not something we originally had in mind ... but we're willing to do our part helping with cleaning up this horrible mess." said Randy Hill, CEO of Advanced Trailer. He has offered BP free consulting and use of equipment to test how it can help in the clean up.