NEW ORLEANS, May 24 (UPI) -- Efforts to stop the Gulf of Mexico oil spill suffered setbacks as U.S. officials and British Petroleum argued over deadlines and solutions, officials say.
BP had said it would stem the leak Tuesday by pumping a heavy fluid down the well, a technique known as top kill, but company officials said implementation of the tactic would be delayed a day, The New York Times reported Monday.
BP also remains at loggerheads with the Environmental Protection Agency over the toxicity of the chemical dispersant it was spraying on the spill. Last week the EPA ordered BP to find a "less toxic" solution by Sunday, but BP did not comply, claiming the dispersant being used was the safest available, the Times reported.
Some federal officials say they've grown tired of waiting for the well to be sealed up.
"BP in my mind no longer stands for British Petroleum -- it stands for Beyond Patience," Senate Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., said. "People have been waiting 34 days for British Petroleum to cap this well and stop the damage that's happening across the Gulf of Mexico."
Millions of gallons of crude oil have poured into the gulf since an April 20 explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig that left 11 workers dead. The rig was owned by the Swiss firm Transocean and operated by BP.
Jindal, who estimated oil has contaminated 70 miles of his state's shoreline, said the ongoing leak "threatens our way of life in Louisiana."
Napolitano and Salazar said the government is holding BP responsible, the Los Angeles Times said.
"The fact of the matter is that this is a BP mess. It is a horrible mess," Salazar said. "We will not rest until their job is done."