VANCOUVER, British Columbia – The BC government just announced today that it has reached an agreement with the maker of the ShamWow super towel that will see the legendary material be used in emergency oil cleanup efforts of the BC coast.
Those of you who love to watch late-night infomercial are quite familiar with the ShamWow towels for its notorious ability to clean up any liquid mess, whether it be in homes or businesses. But when Calgary-based Gravitar Energy approached ShamWowzers Inc. about a partner project to co-develop and transform the space-aged material into an environmental cleanup tool, the German-based towel manufacturer jumped at the opportunity.
“We saw potential here to do some real good beyond the kitchen. While working with the oil and gas experts over at Gravitar, we have created what might be the world’s best tool for cleaning up oil and related petroleum spills in oceanic environments, and that includes heavy bitumen.” – Charlie Handhammer, President and CEO of ShamWowzers Inc.
The material composition of the new ShamOilSop+ is a slight departure from its pop culture predecessor. It is 20cm thick and is available on either a 10 meter or 20 meter wide roll, with perforations every 5 meters, much like a very large roll of paper towels. It can be deployed from aircraft over spills in a similar fashion to throwing toilet paper on your neighbour’s house on Halloween.
The hyper-absorbent material is designed to preferentially soak up and neutralize petroleum products and byproducts through a process dubbed PetroSolvency™, which lab tests show effectively removes 98% of all petroleum chemicals from saltwater.
The process has been tested extensively in the lab using sinks of saltwater with used motor oil poured into them. A field test off the coast of British Columbia is pending approval next week. The test requires a man-made and controlled spill of 10,000 barrels of mixed light and heavy oil into the waters off the coast, at which point 3 aircraft will deploy the ShamOilSop+ towels, letting them Float&Soak™ for 12 hours, and then have the towels collected with rubber dinghies. The effected waters will then be tested for remaining petroleum signatures, with the hope that this new innovative product can be ready for emergencies in the very near future.
Environmental protection agencies are on the record as being cautiously optimistic about this new product, stating that, “it’s the least that a Calgary-based oil and gas company can do to help the environment.” Dr. Sunshine McQueefer, with Granville Island-based GreenPOS spoke to 2P News Rodecker Smith.
“I use ShamWow towels pretty much every day in my home made of clay. When the thatched roof on my 14 sqft hut leaks, the water creates a muddy slurry that the ShamWow sops up like nobody’s business. So, I can only imagine that the ones they’ve created for oil will work even better. But I will make sure I’m there for this proposed test to make sure that they are using real oil, and just to make sure it works for larger spills, I want them to dump at least 100,000 barrels for the test.” – Sunshine McQueefer, Ph.D.