Washington (CNN) - A top White House aide and the managing director of oil giant BP provided differing versions Sunday for who provided the initial inaccurate estimates of the size of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
Robert Dudley, the BP official who appeared on CNN's "State of the Union" and other talk shows, said early estimates that 5,000 barrels (210,000 gallons) were leaking into the ocean each day came from government satellite imaging, rather than BP's figures.
An updated estimate issued last week by a government-led team put the leak at 12,000-19,000 barrels (504,000 to 798,000 gallons) a day, more than double the initial figure.
"The best way to measure those early rates or estimate those early rates were from satellite data, not BP data," Dudley said on the CBS program "Face the Nation."
Not true, countered Carol Browner, the assistant on energy and climate change to President Barack Obama, who spoke to the NBC program "Meet the Press" and the CBS show.
"The very, very first estimates came from BP," Browner said on the CBS program. "They had the footage of the plume. The government then did satellite imagery and we realized that those estimates were not accurate."
Browner noted that BP had a "vested financial interest" in downplaying the size of the leak.