Editor's Note: Watch CNN's "American Morning" on Monday from 6-9 a.m. ET for the latest reporting live from the scene of the Gulf Coast oil spill disaster. (Photos: Getty Images and Tracy Sabo/CNN)"
(CNN) – BP has measured "some success" in the Gulf of Mexico with a risky procedure known as "top kill," which has never been tried before a mile under the ocean's surface, the company's top executive said Friday.
The oil flow stopped when heavy drilling mud was being pumped into the well at high pressure, but it was too early to tell whether the operation will be able to permanently keep oil from gushing out, said Tony Hayward, BP's chief executive officer. The oil giant plans to resume pumping mud later Friday.
"Clearly, while we're pumping mud there is no oil and gas coming into the sea," Hayward said. A live video feed from the ocean floor showed a thick brown stream gushing into the water. That material was almost all nontoxic, water-based mud - not oil - he said. Read more
(CNN) – It may be years before we know the full extent of damage from the Gulf oil spill. There's no doubt the impact on fish, wildlife and the environment has been devastating. So, can this coast recover? Doug Inkley is a senior scientist with the National Wildlife Federation and has been monitoring the spill and cleanup efforts. He joined us on Friday's American Morning to give us his assessment.
(CNN) – Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer, but you wouldn't know it from looking at the beaches of Grand Isle, Louisiana. Normally, they would be packed with tourists, but this year no one's swimming or visiting, and that's putting local businesses at risk. Rhea Pelotto manages the Barataria restaurant and she joined us on Friday's American Morning to explain how the oil spill has impacted her business.
(CNN) – BP's top official, who had previously said the environmental impact on the Gulf of Mexico would be modest, upgraded his assessment Friday to an "environmental catastrophe" during an interview with American Morning's John Roberts.
Also Friday, engineers in the Gulf tried the "junk shot" method in an attempt to stop a massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, BP's chief executive Tony Hayward said.
The procedure involved shooting debris such as shredded rubber tires, golf balls and similar objects into the blowout preventer in an attempt to clog it and stop the leak. The goal of the junk shot is to force-feed the preventer, the device that failed when the disaster unfolded, until it becomes so plugged that the oil stops flowing or slows to a relative trickle.
The company plans to resume its "top kill" method, pumping heavy mud into the leak, later Friday, he said.
President Obama is scheduled to visit Louisiana on Friday for the second time since an oil rig explosion sent a historic amount of oil gushing into the Gulf. Read more
Palm Beach, Florida (CNN) - For years, Army veteran Roy Foster's motto has been "No man left behind." This month, he's broadened it to include women.
In November, Foster was recognized at "CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute" as a Top 10 CNN Hero of 2009 for his efforts to help male veterans struggling with homelessness and addiction. His nonprofit, Faith*Hope*Love*Charity, has provided food, housing, counseling, employment and medical services to more than 1,100 veterans.
"I was somewhat overwhelmed at the tribute. To be a part of something that you love doing - to be honored in doing it was, you know, strange," recalled Foster, 54. "But then to be showcased internationally was tremendous. And it's still reaping benefits today."
Among those benefits is Foster's recent opening of the First Stop Resource Center and Housing Program in Palm Beach, Florida. The center and program widen the scope of support services his organization has been offering through its original Stand Down House. They also bring Foster's long-held dream to fruition. Read more
(CNN) – Volunteers and environmental experts are working around-the-clock to protect as much of the wildlife as they can across the Gulf Coast region. So, just how many animals have already died in the 39 days since the spill started? Our Rob Marciano tried to find out, but with BP calling the shots, it's a question even the feds are having trouble answering.