There are estimated to be around 27,000 abandoned oil rigs, 23,500 of which are permanently abandonded and 3,500 listed as temporarily abandonded. Temporarily abandoned oil rigs have to have a plan within a year for sealing them permanently. Unfortunately this rule is frequently circumvented or forgotten about. Even “permanently sealed” wells can leak, as the plugs decay. All in all, it’s a messy situation.
To be accurate, there are few if any abandoned oil “rigs” in the Gulf of Mexico. Wells are abandoned, but the rigs that drill the wells move on to other locations.
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