Gulf Oil Spill Day 76: A Whale Awaits EPA And Jones WaiverDian L. Chuupdated Jul 05, 2010TweetAt GET.com we maintain complete editorial integrity on our content & provide transparent & unbiased information. Companies don't pay us to include their products although we receive a compensation when you successfully apply to products from our partners. See how we make money here.At GET.com we maintain complete editorial integrity. The world’s largest oil skimmer vessel arrived in the Gulf and has docked in Louisiana since June 30 awaiting U.S. official review and approval. The Taiwanese-flagged vessel was originally commissioned as a conventional oil tanker earlier this year in South Korea. But the ship’s owner, Taiwan shipping giant –TMT (“Today Makes Tomorrow”) Shipping Offshore—modified it into an oil skimmer immediately after the BP Deepwater Horizon rig explosion.A Whale's Big Gamble TMT is making a pretty big gamble as the giant A Whale has not gotten a contract from BP or the U.S. government. According to the Associated Press (video below), the massive vessel—called "A Whale"-- is 3 1/2 football fields long and 10-story high. It's outfitted with 12 vents on either side of its bow. Once deployed, the ship could vacuum about 21 million gallons of oil fouled water per day. The oil would then be moved to another tanker for disposal, and the water would be pumped back into the Gulf.Awaiting EPA & Jones Waiver That technology; however, has never been used or even tested, and requires the sign-off from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Furthermore, the vessel could have another hurdle. It may need a waiver of the Jones Act, which prohibits foreign-flagged vessel and non-U.S. crew working in the U.S. Gulf, as reported by a news clip from ABC 13 News. As of this writing, the behemoth A Whale is not yet ready to attack the Gulf of Mexico oil spill after a weekend of testing proved inconclusive, mostly due to the rough sea state caused by Hurricane Alex, according to Nola, quoting a statement from TMT on Monday, July 5, 2010. Testing is said to resume as soon as the water is calmer. But the National Weather Service indicated that the current spate of bad weather is likely to last for the next few daysLocals Remain Frustrated Meanwhile, many local officials were anxious to get most of the smaller oil skimmers, halted last week by Alex, back on track and were frustrated that the “A Whale” can’t start working on the cleanup immediately. And understandably, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said it was exasperating to have “A Whale” anchored offshore instead of being put to immediate use.BP Relief Wells On Track So, it seems A Whale may need a while to finally skim at the U.S. Gulf. But fortunately, weather has not affected the two relief wells by BP meant to finally plug the oil gusher. BP said early to mid-August is still the timeframe for the completion of the drilling.Share | Editorial Disclosure: Any personal views and opinions expressed by the author in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of GET.com. The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of the companies mentioned, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.