Quote: Originally Posted by Tonington
I won't cut and paste the entire blog, but if you follow this link, you'll see how one Louisiana Senator, formerly a Representative in the House, attempted to limit the extent of criminal law when dealing with oil spills. He also has recently introduced a bill to limit the cap on liability for the oil companies:
Flashback: In 2000, Vitter proposed legislation to reduce criminal liability of oil companies for spills Climate Progress (external - login to view)
Companies would just raise the prices on the consumer product that 'we' buy, no way they are going to take it out of the shareholders cut of the profits. BP is all set to shell out $10B to it's shareholders and nobody with any authority is saying squat about it.
www.nytimes.com/gwire/2010/05...ezi-91298.html (external - login to view)
That is what led many analysts to use the Exxon Valdez
as the barometer for what BP is likely to pay. Exxon paid more than $3.8 billion in cleanup and damage costs, plus about $500 million in punitive damages.
climateprogress.org/2010/05/2...p-oil-disaste/ (external - login to view)
Exxon and BP’s broken record
Many would assume that BP—the company responsible for the Gulf Coast disaster—will cover the entire cost of cleanup. But we learned from the Exxon Valdez spill that the reality is very different:
The Exxon Valdez tanker spilled more than 11 million gallons
of crude oil into Alaska’s Prince William Sound, which eventually contaminated approximately 1,300 miles of shoreline (external - login to view)
. The total costs of Exxon Valdez, including both cleanup and also “fines, penalties and claims settlements,” ran as much as $7 billion (external - login to view)
. Cleanup of the affected region alone cost at least $2.5 billion (external - login to view)
, and much oil remains.
Yet Exxon made high profits even in the aftermath of the most expensive oil spill (external - login to view)
in history. They made $3.8 billion profit in 1989 (external - login to view)
and $5 billion in 1990 (external - login to view)
. And this occurred while Exxon disputed cleanup costs nearly every step of the way.
Exxon fought paying damages and appealed court decisions multiple times, and they have still not paid in full. Years of fighting and court appeals on Exxon’s part finally concluded with a U.S. Supreme Court decision in 2008 that found that Exxon only had to pay $507.5 million of the original 1994 court decree for $5 billion (external - login to view)
in punitive damages. And as of 2009, Exxon had paid only $383 million (external - login to view)
of this $507.5 million to those who sued, stalling on the rest and fighting the $500 million in interest owed to fishermen and other small businesses from more than 12 years of litigation.
Twenty years later, some of the original plaintiffs are no longer alive to receive, or continue fighting for, their damages. An estimated 8,000 of the original Exxon Valdez plaintiffs have died (external - login to view)
since the spill while waiting for their compensation as Exxon fought them in court.
Be interesting to know what the Lawyers for both sides made.
Last edited by MHz; Jun 5th, 2010 at 04:46 PM..