BP: Blackmailing the Gulf Coast?

Via on Sep 3, 2010

Originally written and published by Shad Murib with our friends at New Era News. To read the full article, head there.

In yet another attempt to skirt financial and labor-related responsibilities in cleaning up the massive spill in the Gulf Coast, BP is, quite literally, attempting to blackmail the Gulf Coast.

The corporation is battling The White House and Congress, who want to limit BP’s involvement in Gulf Coast drilling operations.

The New York Times reports,

But as state and federal officials, individuals and businesses continue to seek additional funds beyond the minimum fines and compensation that BP must pay under the law, the company has signaled its reluctance to cooperate unless it can continue to operate in the Gulf of Mexico. The gulf accounts for 11 percent of its global production.

BP claims that they won’t have the financial resources to continue the clean up without Gulf Coast operations—when in fact the entire cost of the loss oil and reparations do little more than dent their bottomline (their stock, week to week, is another story).

I’m all for the allowance of business to continue as usual—a corporation shouldn’t be punished to excess for an accident. But, the Gulf Coast spill was not just a tragedy—it opened the door for corporations such as BP to seek energy elsewhere. Whether from electricity, nuclear, algae or any other wealth of fuel available, the idea behind limiting operations in the Gulf is to limit the production of oil in lieu of other resources.

The possibility of blackmailing a region, and in effect, extortion, on the part of BP plays into their strategy of failure. While launching a multi-million dollar ad campaign to prove themselves to the American people, BP was actively attempting to escape financial and causal responsibility for the accident, when cleaning up the accident and putting forth the resources to do so was the best ad campaign they could have executed.

Also reported by The New York Times,

The risk of having a dangerous company like BP develop new resources in the gulf is too great,” said Daniel Weiss, Mr. Miller’s chief of staff. “Year after year after year, no matter how many incidents they’re involved in, no matter how many fines they’ve had to pay, they never changed their behavior. BP has no one to blame but themselves.”

To read the rest of the article, head to New Era News.

About News

Andrew Whitehead is a soon-to-be graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder with a degree in Environmental Studies. He grew up in the grand country of Ireland, which is probably where he began to develop his exquisite beer palate. After moving to Wayne, Pennsylvania, Andrew became seriously passionate about the environment and strives to spread his awareness with anyone willing to listen. In his free time he loves to play hockey and soccer as well as go hiking. All that know him well fear his obsession with goats will land him a staring role on the well-known American TV show “Hoarders”.

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