The chief executive of BP says crews have been able to reduce the amount of oil flowing from a massive underwater leak from reaching the Gulf surface with a new approach of using chemicals at the source.
CEO Tony Hayward also said BP is not responsible for the Gulf of Mexico drill rig accident that set off the spill, but is taking responsibility for the response and cleanup, according to media reports.
Hayward said on NBC's "Today" show Monday morning that BP is injecting dispersant chemicals into the oil as it pours out of an undersea well. He said it appeared to be having a significant impact on the amount that reaches the spreading surface slick.
The effort comes as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said the oil slick appears to be drifting toward the Alabama and Florida coasts, including the Chandeleur Islands off Louisiana.
President Barack Obama visited Louisiana Sunday for a firsthand look at the response effort.
"The oil that is still leaking from the well could seriously damage the economy and the environment of our Gulf states and it could extend for a long time," Obama said. "It could jeopardize the livelihoods of thousands of Americans who call this place home."
Click here to read a New York Times article with photos and video on the watermen affected by the spill.