Skip to main content

U.S. accepts Gulf disaster aid from Canada

By the CNN Wire Staff
  • Canada to provide 3,000 meters of ocean boom to fight oil spill
  • U.S. government expects BP to reimburse cost of boom
  • Aid offers have come from 17 countries, but only four have been accepted

(CNN) -- The federal government has accepted Canada's offer of 3,000 meters -- or more than 9,800 feet -- of ocean boom to help combat the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, a State Department spokesman said Monday.

The boom is expected to arrive in the Gulf on Tuesday, spokesman P.J. Crowley noted. The federal government will reimburse Canada for both the transportation of the boom and however much of the boom is actually used, up to $3 million, he added.

"We anticipate that BP will, in turn, reimburse the government for this expenditure," Crowley said.

Countries from around the world have offered to help the United States and BP deal with the massive oil spill, but several nations' representatives recently said that they did not hear back after reaching out to officials.

Seventeen offers of assistance have come from countries and four from international organizations including the European Union and the European Maritime Safety Agency, according to the State Department. The assistance includes a range of offers, from ocean boom to scientific expertise.

The State Department receives the offers and passes them on to the U.S. Coast Guard-led Unified Area Command, which includes representatives from BP, the owner of the ruptured well.

Four offers -- from Canada, Mexico, Norway and the Netherlands -- have been accepted. Canada, Mexico and Norway are major oil-producing countries.

In addition, assistance is coming through private as well as public sources, Crowley recently said.

One of the reasons why so many offers have not been accepted, according to a senior U.S. official, is the liability for any equipment that might be provided and support for any crews that might accompany that equipment.

CNN's Alan Silverleib, Adam Levine and Jill Dougherty contributed to this report.