Mysterious bubbling reported by salt dome 50 miles from giant Louisiana sinkhole — Sheriff asking motorists to stay away

Published: February 21st, 2013 at 7:45 pm ET


The Advocate, February 21, 2013: Opponents of expanding the underground natural gas storage facility under Lake Peigneur asked state regulators on Wednesday to carefully review what they argue has the potential to become another disaster on the scale of the growing sinkhole in Assumption Parish. […] AGL Resources is proposing to scour out two new salt caverns for natural gas storage […] [Nara] Crowley and other residents cited a host of potential safety and environmental concerns and pointed to the continued bubbling at the lake. Bubbling also was reported at Bayou Corne before the sinkhole developed there last year. […]

WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Feb 21, 2013: Residents who live in Lake Peigneur in Iberia Parish are worried active bubbling on the lake near their homes could be putting their lives in danger. [..] The Department of Environmental Quality sent workers to the area to take samples of the mysterious bubbles on the lake surface. […]

KATC Lafayette, Louisiana, Feb. 20, 2013: Residents calim [sic] the lake has bubbled in the past and captured pictures of it bubbling again Wednesday afternoon.

The Daily Iberian, Feb. 21, 2013: […] The most recent was Wednesday afternoon. The Vermilion and Iberia Parish sheriff’s offices as well as DNR were called out this morning when residents saw the lake was still bubbling. The Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Office is asking motorists to stay clear of the area until DNR and the Department of Environmental Quality assess the bubbling. [Resident Nara] Crowley said this is the first time bubbling has continued into a second day. […]

Published: February 21st, 2013 at 7:45 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. TV: Worse than giant sinkhole? Louisiana sheriff concerned about bubbling above salt dome, contacts Gov. Jindal (VIDEO) March 21, 2013
  2. Agents inspect mystery bubbling by another Louisiana salt dome: We found foaming residue… something’s happening — Witness: Lines of bubbles stretched for thousands of feet (VIDEOS) February 22, 2013
  3. Officials report new bubbling about 3 miles from giant sinkhole — 3 times further away than any bubble site yet (MAP) September 27, 2012
  4. Sinkhole: Napoleonville Salt Dome Project hydrocarbon survey was over 50 square miles — Reported size of 1 mile by 3 miles only includes top of dome (PHOTO) October 16, 2012
  5. Officials developing plan if giant Louisiana sinkhole compromises important highway — Concern about “entire salt dome”, not just cap? June 12, 2013

47 comments to Mysterious bubbling reported by salt dome 50 miles from giant Louisiana sinkhole — Sheriff asking motorists to stay away

  • moonshellblue moonshellblue

    Mysterious Bubbles? Hmm could it be Methane? Mystery solved? Methane bubbles seem to be popping up everywhere, no pun intended. Our changing planet. We have them in PA and I have read other reports of bubbles in other states and countries. Yes, climate change Co2 is over 395ppb and Methane is also increasing. I personally think we have waited too long and are past the tipping point and I do sincerely hope I'm wrong and a viable solution can be found.

  • Cataclysmic Cataclysmic

    Universities bought by industry many studies in question "…pointed to alarming methane leaks at hydraulically fractured shale gas wells. They concluded that the leaks are hard to quantify but potentially very significant.

    The Howarth team members didn’t measure methane leakage themselves. They acknowledged the shortcomings of their data and urged other independent scientists to get busy measuring methane leaks from gas drilling well pads, compressor stations and the often-antiquated pipelines that carry gas to the end user. “The quality of the data is terrible because the industry is very secretive and not very honest,” Howarth said."

    …For example, joint research by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the University of Colorado at Boulder published in January measured unexpectedly high methane leakage from natural gas production sites in Colorado and Utah.

  • ncmissouri

    Would anyone mind if I pose a wild theory for everything? I'm humble here (and my feelings might get hurt), but here goes. I believe our solar system has encountered some kind of cosmic cold plasma cloud. The cold plasma has been acting to affect weather on all of the planets and the sun. That's why the spots haven't done much. It also is why our earth is getting smacked with strange weather and inner earth events. Well, there I did it, got it off my chest. Please don't laugh too much.

    • Jebus Jebus

      No offense ncmissouri,
      But, these events are happening, because they are fracking the f#ck out of this continent…

      • Flapdoodle Flapdoodle

        We have fracked up most of this poor planet.

      • moonshellblue moonshellblue

        I think ncmissouri has a valid point and it does play into our erratic climate but there is no denying our planet is heating up and thus weather will intensify. I think we have passed the tipping point and nothing can be done but geo-engineers will try with cloud seeding, Project Lucy, etc. and just accelerate the process as they try to make a profit from extracting resources from this disaster. IMHO It's not nice to fool Mother Nature as she has her own way of dealing with our environment and I don't think she is very happy with our act at this juncture and perhaps that is her plan to get rid of species hell bent on destroying what once was a beautiful planet. Man's greed arrogance and downright stupidity has cost us the water we drink, the air we breathe and it doesn't matter how much money they accumulate.

    • PavewayIII PavewayIII

      You already have more credibility than the Japanese and U.S. Governments, ncmissouri. Nobody laughing here.

      Astrophysicists recently recognized that there are massive gas clouds that our galaxy passes through.

    • Jebus Jebus

      It is interesting to think about these natural events on such a gigantic scale, earth has probably passed through many, before, on it's laps around the galaxy. Life survived.
      What hasn't been done before, on an earth sized scale against all life, is a massive dumping of radionuclides and radioisotopes into the environment…

      • Anthony Anthony

        I would be interested in your take on this I found Jebus… and please ignore the reference to 666… I did and that's not my bag.

        Did Nostradamus predict Japan radiation crisis
        **Century 1 – 21.
        Profonde argille blanche nourrir rocher
        Qui d'vn abysme y stra lacticineuse :
        En vain troubles ne l'oseront toucher,
        Ignorans estre au fond terre arguilleuse.

        Century 1 – 21
        The rock holds in its depths white clay, which will come out milk-white from a cleft, Needlessly troubled people will not dare touch it, unaware that the foundation of the earth is of clay.

        This Nostradamus Quatrain is descriptive of the Radioactive material leaking from the Reactor. This is one of the Quatrains which lead to the impending World Climax .A good sign is that loss of life and destruction is not indicated in this Quatrain. I hope that this is a warning, and nothing more.**

        Read more:
        Under Creative Commons License: Attribution

    • Sickputer

      Cold Plasma is an interesting discovery in outer space and certainly the more we learn about how the jet streams, Van Allen belts, and other factors affecting Earth dynamics the better chance we have to prevent Extinction Level Events. The human race is on the cusp of learning amazing things about how our world has thrived for carbon forms. I was a teenager when I witnessed men walk on the moon. Will we ever reach such amazing feats again?

      Probably not in America's future because we have regressed into a nation preoccupied with global police activities instead of astounding beneficial science activities. Too bad that our finest moment in the history of mankind was shoved aside in favor of Dr. Frankenstein and his band of nucleocrats. Instead of discovering new worlds they are intent on policies that will lead to a massive die-offs of the human race. Japan being a case in point.

      • 16Penny 16Penny

        "Will we ever reach such amazing feats again?"

        Nope, we went up to investigate what appeared to be a UFO and it turned out to be a Russian hoax. Talk about egg in the face, Nixon was pissed!

      • Thad

        Tried to get out of the oilfield once– was a NASA certified welder on the Apollo project– part of the team that built the second gen cryogenic tanks for 14 through 17. There are tanks in the lander sections on the moon with my soc sec number on the build/inspection plates.
        My only claim to fame– and no one can see them…
        Apollo over so made prototype tank for SkyLab- no go. Laid off so back into the oil field. later heard Skylab tank became prototype for the Shuttle cryogenic tanks…

        The truck that delivered the Apollo tanks to airport for transport flt to the Cape ran on hydrogen using a prototype Apollo cyrogenic tank–

  • ncmissouri

    Thanks Jebus and PavewayIII. I'm glad you thought about this and this site let me post it.

  • Jebus Jebus

    Report: Unreliable data could hinder EPA efforts to control pollution from natural gas boom

    Inspector General Arthur Elkins Jr. said the EPA has failed to directly measure emissions from some pieces of equipment and processes, and some estimates it does have are of “questionable quality.”

    “With limited data, human health risks are uncertain, states may design incorrect or ineffective emission control strategies, and EPA’s decisions about regulating industry may be misinformed,” Elkins said.

  • Thad

    Thread is about Lake Peigneur gas bubbles some way fracking got into the discussion – no big deal. Fracking is not the best way to go—

    But do need to mention there has never been any fracking in the Bayou Corne or Lake Peigneur area. Closest about 260 mi NW in the Haynesville shale. One possible well within 100 mi in the Tusculoosa Marine but can't verify..
    The problems at Bayou Corne and Lake Peigneur have nothing to do with fracking

    • Cataclysmic Cataclysmic

      Thad, I think the reason we keep coming back to fracking is the methane connection with bubbles popping up..

      injection mining, call it what you will.. I don't care so much that my nomenclature is correct to this industry's standard..

      how about drilling copious holes in the ground for industry to pump out or pump in..? do you have a word that would better describe this as a whole? One that includes directional drilling, fracking, injection mining? If you did, I think we could all communicate more efficiently. Otherwise, you will just have to get used to us lay folks using the term fracking to cover it all.

      • PavewayIII PavewayIII

        "…I don't care so much that my nomenclature is correct to this industry's standard…"

        = "…I'll use MOX to describe all BWR steam-fed turbine power generation…"

        Drilling copious holes to search for and produce a resource is called exploration and production (E&P). E&P work means seismic work, surveying, site set-up, drilling, spudding, formation stimulation, well finishing and production.

        One method of formation stimulation is with hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. You're trying to release more of a liquid or gas resource tighly bound in rock by cracking the rock apart first.

        Hydraulic fracking is not the *only* way to open up the rock. Every well doesn't require fracking, only ones with specific characteristics. Vertical, directional and horizontal leg wells can all be fracked if that makes sense in that specific well. The type of drilling is unrelated to the way the formation is stimulated (if it is at all).

        Solution mining by it's very nature does not need to fracture anything – it recovers the minerals by dissolving them. Fracturing the solid mineral is something to be avoided because it destabilizes the mined out area.

        Oil and gas is found in sedimentary sand layers in the Gulf of Mexico. The rock is already cracked into tiny pieces – hydraulic fracking is useless. It's also very expensive.

        • Cataclysmic Cataclysmic

          Thank you for giving some education on this, and I see your point with the comparison to mox, gen iv tech… sadly I spent two years having to understand all of the nuclear jargon so I could understand what the heck that dastardly industry is up to.. and here we are with another. I do not think I am alone when I want to lump it all together.. otherwise we have some very obtuse folks on here who refuse to understand that they did not frack the salt dome area.. but they have drilled down next to it.. they have injection mined out giant caverns.. they have disturbed the earth. I think of the planet like my body, then the Earth has ring worm on steroids or something.. I mean exploration and production. E&P disease 🙂

      • Thad

        As PIII mentioned there are many facets to oil drlg exploration and production. Fracking is mentioned as a separate componet as it is the only production process where pressured is intentionally applied to the formation to fracture and break-open. There has been problem with fracking and too often it is thought to be and/or blamed for every problem or event in drlg wells.
        I mentioned fracking where so it can understood it is neither the cause or a contributer to the problem. Fracking is done in hard shale formations with fine pores but very limited connection between the pores — fracturing connects the pore so the gas can be produced– oil/gas production prior to the developement of fracking was and still is from sandstone formation which have larger pores that are connected–same as an aquifer but oil/gas instead of water.
        As said method of drld has nothing to do with fracking or conventional that is dependent on type of source formation. The only reason fracked wells are drilled horizontal is that the well bore can run in the formation for a longer distance, limited only to formation length (some measured in miles) AND when it is fracked more bore is exposed to pressure and fracturing which relates directly production.. A vertical bore would be limited to the thickness of the formations. Horizontal wells are not limited to fracking– orginally developed to drl lengthwise in thin formations–

        • Cataclysmic Cataclysmic

          Thank you Thad. From a lay persons' perspective, I see coincidental perhaps, similarities within many of the E & P methods, as with the article that spoke about the collusion of industry within higher education to teach our students the Industries truth as opposed to scientific truth and spoke of "methane leaks from gas drilling well pads, compressor stations and the often-antiquated pipelines that carry gas to the end user. “The quality of the data is terrible because the industry is very secretive and not very honest,” Howarth said." So my uneducated brain says… hey, aren't those some of the same pieces of the puzzle I have read about while keeping up on Bayou Corne sinkhole.. so I think my brain just wants to lump it all together under that devilish fracking.. so thank you for and Pavewayiii for helping me understand a bit more.

          oh and that article is found here, very interesting regarding the fracking corruption at: MIT, Penn State University, the University of Texas at Austin and the State University of New York at Buffalo, including Obama's perhaps new Frack happy Energy Secretary.. scary stuff.

          • Thad

            Oh I don't buy into everything they peddle.
            When I was a kid in the '50s lived in Humble Tx, birthplace of Humble Oil– now Mobil of EXXON-Mobil. Town was sited near the old oilfield originally for the worker dating back to the '20s
            There were so many leaky old well casings and pipelines the ground was charged..
            We would take a coffee can – cut both ends out and set on the ground then drop a burning match in it— And the prettiest blue flame would dance around just above the can–all night if we did not move the cam.

  • bwoodfield bwoodfield

    Frankly, 50 miles underground isn't that far of a distance for these salt domes. With all the subsidence going on down there it's more than likely another pocket that has broken loose. I wouldn't be at all surprised to start seeing more sink holes popping up all around Bayou Corne.

    • Thad

      it is when there is no continous connecting formations, when formation between are interrupted/ blocked by faults. Not even the same water aquifers– locations are on opposite sides of a very fast running deep river the Atachalfalaya

    • 16Penny 16Penny

      bwoodfield, I am suspicious of the same thing.

      I understand why Thad believes what he does, that is what has been taught. We are seeing evidence of gas migrations and trying to figure out how.

      Is there new volcanic activity heating up our subterranean geologic layers, releasing methane all over in pockets or is it coming from the GOM and up to the craton and all points around the edge? I don't have the answers but I think it is ok to ask the questions and look for supporting or contradicting evidence.

      As far as no connecting formations, I skimmed through that article ( and found some discussion of their understanding of gas migration. I recommend using the Table of Contents to narrow your reading down, it is long.

      What I recall reading was that it is possible for faults to do both, stop flow of gas due to discontinuous layers and permit flow along the fault or through different types of permeable layers or intersecting faults.

      • Thad

        16 P
        what ever is the source of the methane to migrate there must be a open path– either connected pore spaces as in sandstone formations or fractures and fissures. It can not pass through 'tight' solids such as shale– or there would be no need for fracking
        Faulting can creat paths but usually block due to a vertical mismatch, can be hundreds of feet.
        There is a famous fault off Santa Barbara Cal third largest US oil spll. Underground blowout similar to the Apache well offshore. The oil came up the well bore entered a formation that was depleted and faulted to seabed. This is vertical migration not 50 miles lateral migration. The sinkhole is vertical migration until it enters the aquifer..
        Worked several well in SW Tx that were fracked– and no problem. From what research I could do, the difference is in formations above the formations fracked and the csng/ cement programs.. Standard cement policy when cementing is enough to go up into previous casng, Tx wells the companys cemented to surface each csng string. Tx formations above have a small amount compressibility, 'Up north" formations older harder no compressibility. When fracking pressure is applied in the Tx wells the full cement prevents pressure being transmitted to upper formations and the compressibility allows the formations to give and rebounds when pressure is released. In the harder formations when compressed collapses and do not rebound leaving a micro annulus open upward to surface/ aquifers

        • 16Penny 16Penny


          I connected a few dots last night. Please look for the link in posts I made around 5 am this morning. That article will give you some of the background information I learned about gas migration.


          "It can not pass through 'tight' solids such as shale– or there would be no need for fracking" (Thad)

          "it is possible for faults to do both, stop flow of gas due to discontinuous layers and permit flow along the fault or through different types of permeable layers or intersecting faults." (16Penny)

          "Experts agree that the pressure that blows the oil into the Gulf waters is estimated to be between 30,000 and 70,000 pounds per square inch (psi). Some speculate that the pressure of the methane at the base of the well head, deep under the ocean floor, may be as high as 100,000 psi — far too much for current technology to contain." (

          "Fracturing equipment operates over a range of pressures and injection rates, and can reach up to 100 megapascals (15,000 psi) and 265 litres per second (9.4 cu ft/s) (100 barrels per minute)." (

          "The sinkhole is vertical migration until it enters the aquifer.." (Thad)

          sucks when things don't follow "the rules" (16Penny)

          and . . .

          • 16Penny 16Penny

            Methane, being lighter than air, tends to migrate vertically. However, pressure gradients cause methane to migrate to areas of lower pressure. These migrations may be in directions other than vertical. ( page 21

          • Thad

            Good Day- lets start with this–"mi2g pioneers security practices and techniques for wealth creation and protection" search was to check their technical/scientific background or consulting experts.
            Have not a clue where they got their numbers or other pseudo-data(Simmons maybe LOL)
            Total depth for the BP/MC-252 was 18,000' BSL- formation pressure was 13,570 psi–pressure at wellhead was 10,655 psi. And the well was sucessfully drilled.It was after drlg during "Temporary Abandonment" ops that BP's negligence caused it to blow out. The blow-out was through a cased and cemented bore from the production formation at bottom-no other formation were exposed to the pressure or the oil and gas being blown-out.

            Methane hydrate occur in deep marine sediments — does not mean deep in the sediments but in sediments in deep water and are limited to the upper zone where the temperature is low enough– the deep water is cold but the sediment temperature increases with depth into the sediment.

            ?? "sucks when things don't follow "the rules" (16Penny)"??
            Don't recall stating that methane could not travel lateral or to a point of lowest pressure- only that it would be blocked by impermeable formations such as clays and shales without OPEN path such as fissures or fractures and faulting does…

            • 16Penny 16Penny


              "These deposits are located within a mid-depth zone around 300–500 m thick in the sediments (the gas hydrate stability zone, or GHSZ) where they coexist with methane dissolved in the fresh, not salt, pore-waters. Above this zone methane is only present in its dissolved form at concentrations that decrease towards the sediment surface. Below it, methane is gaseous. At Blake Ridge on the Atlantic continental rise, the GHSZ started at 190 m depth and continued to 450 m,"


              • 16Penny 16Penny

                Wrong again Thad. Maybe you should start sniffing the trunk before you climb a stump. Poor record of factual accuracy as usual.

                • FREEDOMROX

                  C'mon now, 16 Penny, he was actually agreeing with you…

                  "Don't recall stating that methane could not travel lateral or to a point of lowest pressure- only that it would be blocked by impermeable formations such as clays and shales without OPEN path such as fissures or fractures and faulting does…"

                  In your haste you may have missed that, and in a normal environment, Thad would be correct in his assumptions, yet also allows for the unstable sedimentary region of the Gulf Coast.

                  The actual fault line maps show a perfect line of unblocked passageways via fractures, and I have checked everyone that I can find, and guess what? There is a way out of each and every fault block and it does go further north and west than I expected. Actually I am a little more than shocked to discover migration paths as far as Texas. I wonder to myself if these are not the lower density Louann migratory paths that created the Salt Domes inland in the first place?

                  Either way, give Thad his due, as he nicely agreed with you, only you didn't notice.

              • Thad

                16 P
                in your above Wiki- reference under "Reservoirs"

                "at only some locations in the range of depths where they could occur (10-30% of the GHSZ), and typically are found at low concentrations (0.9-1.5% by volume) at sites where they do occur"