Entries in Deepwater Horizon (4)


BP Sets Out to Disprove Negligence Claims in Gulf Spill Civil Trial

U.S. Coast Guard via Getty Images(NEW ORLEANS) -- Almost two years after the explosion and fire on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico, opening statements for the largest environmental lawsuit in history began in court Monday.  

In order to avoid billions of dollars in damages, BP will have to prove that errors that led to the oil spill do not indicate gross negligence. Melanie Driscoll was among the activists gathered outside the court Monday. She believes BP was grossly negligent.

"Putting their bottom line ahead of human life, bird life, our seafood, our economy is unacceptable. It's a price the American people have paid and we want BP to have to pay that price," Driscoll said.
In this first phase of the lawsuit, the court will focus exclusively on the cause of the explosion and fire aboard the Deepwater Horizon in April of 2010.  That part of the proceedings could last more than three months in a trial that will last over a year.  

BP already has been found guilty of negligence in a criminal trial; now a judge will set out to determine the civil damages and who'll get how much of the potential $17 billion in fines.  

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


BP Trial Delayed by a Week to Discuss Settlement Plans

PRNewsFoto(NEW ORLEANS) -- BP and the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee announced on Sunday that the start of the Deepwater Horizon Multi-District Litigation trial has been adjourned a week by the U.S. District Court.

The adjournment is intended to allow BP and the PSC officials more time to discuss settlement plans in hopes of reaching an agreement. The officials will discuss how best to compensate the people and businesses affected by the Deepwater Horizon accident that killed 11 people and spilled over 180 million gallons of oil into the Gulf in 2010.

The civil trial is slated to be held on March 5.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


BP Wins $27 Million in Gulf Oil Leases

US Coast Guard via Getty Images(NEW ORLEANS) -- The Interior Department announced Wednesday that BP can officially return to deep water exploration in the Gulf of Mexico.

In a lease sale, in which the British oil company bid $109.9 million on 15 leases for oil and gas rights in the western Gulf, 11 leases worth $27.4 million went to BP, according to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management.

The lease auction was the first since BP's Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf last year.  

"Today's lease sale, the first since the tragic events of Deepwater Horizon, continues the Obama administration's commitment to a balanced and comprehensive energy plan," Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in a statement online.

Michael Bromwich, former director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, defended the Interior's decision to include BP in the sale.

"They don't have a deeply flawed record offshore," Bromwich said, according to the National Journal.  "We've done analyses over time on the relative safety records of offshore operators and they were in close to the top crew."

Bromwich added, reports National Journal, that officials close to the matter concluded that issuing an "administrative death penalty" was not necessary based solely on BP's one incident.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Gov. Sean Parnell: "Let Alaska Help Put America Back to Work"

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- With uncertainty spreading across the Middle East the current governor of Alaska, Sean Parnell, is on a mission to open his state to more oil exploration.

Parnell spoke at the National Press Club in Washington and emphasized that America’s security is at stake if the U.S. oil supply continues to come from unstable areas and regimes.

“More domestic oil production, not less, better secures our nation and grows our jobs at home.”

Oil production in Alaska has long been a matter of fierce political debate, particularly whether companies should be able to drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve and offshore oil drilling.

Alaska has been targeted in the moratorium since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. In a press conference on May 27, 2010 President Obama said, “We will suspend the planned exploration of two locations off the coast of Alaska.” 

Originally scheduled to expire in November, the moratorium was lifted in October because pressure from oil and fishery businesses.  However, regulators at Interior Department have yet to issue permits due to the strict safety regulations imposed after the Horizon oil spill. There has been no exploration in U.S. waters deeper than 500 feet since BP’s explosion in April.

“Let’s face it. We are dependent on an open free-fall Suez Canal, a canal through an unstable region the security of which has been purchased with our taxpayers’ dollars,” Parnell said, referring to the change of power in Egypt.

The governor’s solution is opening up Alaska and other U.S. lands for oil exploration, despite environmentalist opposition to offshore drilling and exploration in ANWR.  With Alaska producing 11 percent of national oil production, Parnell said there is more to be found.

Criticizing the Department of Interior and EPA for driving more dependence on foreign oil, Parnell asks that federal agencies “let Alaska help put America back to work.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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