Transcript: Costner Inspired by Exxon Valdez to Create Oil-Cleaning Machine

COSTNER: Well, that's-- it's a catch 22 that I've experienced … . We have tested it. And on all oil spills that were emerging over the last ten or 12 years, I volunteered my equipment, sending it as far away as Japan. But you get out there and what they go, "Well, if it hasn't been tested, we can't take it out. It's-- it's-- the Coast Guard's mandate. Well, if it hasn't been tested."

I said, "But we've been trying to test this." I mean, anybody who could look at it could see that it's kind of a Swiss watch. It's not just kind of a willy-nilly … thing. It took an enormous amount of money to bring this, you know. I mean, I've had scientists and engineers working on this, not me. I'm like a dodo. I've got the real guys working on this, okay?

CHAMPION: You weren't making this in your day time?

COSTNER: No. Aerospace-- Aerospace has signed on with our company. They have the mandate to not let us fail, to not let people put us in the position where we will fail. And if they put us into the toughest spots, which they have, the machine succeeds wildly there, which actually surprised me.

So, you know, we're designed to be a first response, meaning wherever oil comes into water, you drop it off. If your ship was sinking, you'd obviously be looking to a life boat. You'd be looking for your life preserver. You'd be, if somebody was hurt, you'd be looking for a first aid kit.

We've realized over time that we legislate that those things be on boats. If you don't have them, you can be arrested. You can be fined. The same thing should apply where this machine is concerned. Anybody doing business on the ocean where oil could come into contact, they have an obligation to the rest of us around the world who enjoy beaches like this that we know that they're doing something proactive when it's going down. We're just talking about a level of logic here. You know, we're talking about trying to get ahead of the curve. That's all.

CHAMPION: Now … the plan was to put it out where the oil originates. But you've had it testing on some spots …

COSTNER: That's correct.

CHAMPION: --closer to shore.

COSTNER: We have.

CHAMPION: And it's working even there?

COSTNER: And it's worked there, even in the peanut butter. It … it's required a little bit of engineering, but who wouldn't? You know, it'd be like asking an eight-year-old to play against 15-year-olds. That doesn't seem quite fair. But when we did … we agreed to take it there because the machine is very robust.

With a small amount of engineering, with a small amount of … by, like, the locals. I was telling you about Leon and Dave Roberts and people like that. And BP has been working very hard with their engineers to help our guys that they saw the … . They saw what it … can do. You know, anybody can maybe suck up water, but how do you separate it--

CHAMPION: Right.

COSTNER: --you know, at-- at high speeds? And so that's really what we're, what we're about.

CHAMPION: And how has it been going? 'Cause I know there were-- you just got the deal to add more in. And I think there are 12 already there and testing?

COSTNER: I'm not sure about the logistic or what, what's there yet. There has been this testing process. You know, I think the world is tired of this testing. You know, they … they want a level of action. But yeah, we, we got a letter of intent from BP, from Doug Suttles.

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