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offshore drilling 191 articles

Some Gulf species in peril after BP oil spill, but seafood marketers upbeat

When the Tampa Bay Times published an article about the number of sick fish that continue to turn up in the Gulf of Mexico three years after BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition offered to send the reporter on an all-expenses-paid trip to New Orleans to sample delicious, wholesome, safe Gulf seafood. As the Times reported, the writer declined the generous invitation, but the fact that it was extended demonstrates how nervous the Gulf seafood industry continues to be in the wake of such an epic disaster. It also demonstrates the tough dichotomy the Gulf seafood ... Read More

BP calls witnesses to testify in its defense as oil spill trial enters 7th week

Individuals, businesses, and government bodies from local to federal harmed by BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill say the oil giant acted with gross negligence in the events leading to the April 2010 disaster, which killed 11 workers and allowed more than 200 million gallons of oil to escape from the deep-sea well into the Gulf of Mexico. Now it’s BP’s turn to defend itself against those allegations in court. BP began its defense Monday in New Orleans, calling a retired Louisiana State University petroleum engineering professor as its first witness to testify in a trial designed to apportion blame among ... Read More

Die off, disease, mutation in wake of BP oil spill concern scientists

Three years after BP’s Deepwater Horizon disaster unleashed the nation’s worst oil spill, a group of University of South Florida scientists have found evidence of a massive die-off at the base of the Gulf of Mexico’s food chain – a troubling sign that sea life in the area is far from returning to normal. David Hollander, a USF chemical oceanographer, told the Tampa Bay Times that a die-off of tiny foraminifera stretches into the mile-deep DeSoto Canyon where BP’s Macondo well blew out in April 2010. From there the die-off emanates throughout the Gulf waters, following the trails forged by ... Read More

Exxon says it will pay costs of cleaning up Arkansas oil spill

Exxon Mobil officials say that the company will assume all of the costs stemming from the cleanup of the oil spill that originated from a ruptured pipeline in Arkansas last week. The spill occurred on Friday, March 30, when a breach in Exxon Mobil’s 60-year-old Pegasus pipeline sent thousands of barrels of sticky Canadian crude oil into the Arkansas community of Mayflower. The company told ABC News that it is actively cleaning up the spill and has deployed a number of claims adjusters to the area to assist residents harmed or displaced by the spill, which prompted the evacuation of ... Read More

Three Alabamians charged with defrauding BP oil spill fund

Three Alabama residents are facing federal charges for allegedly submitting fraudulent claims to the Gulf Coast Claims Facility (GCCF), which was established to compensate the victims of BP’s enormous 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. According to court documents, Andre Clinton Dale, 45, of Mobile; Crystal David Blackmon, 27, of Bessemer; and Christopher Jarris Addison, 31, of Birmingham filed false claims to the GCCF for lost wages totaling nearly $175,000. All three have signed plea agreements stating they will each plead guilty to one count of conspiracy, and will pay restitution for the amount they received from ... Read More

ExxonMobil pipeline breach drenches Arkansas community in oil

As of Monday afternoon, Exxon Mobil had yet to start excavating the area where a breach in its Pegasus pipeline has been releasing thousands of barrels of Canadian crude oil into the environment, meaning a fix could be days away. The major oil spill erupted Friday in the central Arkansas community of Mayflower, just a few minutes from Little Rock, swamping sections of the city in oily sludge and toxic fumes. Built in the 1940s, the frail Pegasus pipeline is capable of carrying more than 90,000 barrels of crude oil per day from Patoka, Illinois, to Nederland, Texas. At the ... Read More

BP trial: Transocean comes under fire over poor maintenance record

A maintenance director for Transocean, the company that owned the Deepwater Horizon rig and leased it to BP for exploratory drilling, testified in court Tuesday that the rig was “not flawless” at the time it exploded and sank in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010, but that “overall it was in really good shape.” The testimony was entered in response to assertions made by a plaintiffs’ expert that the Deepwater Horizon was riddled with maintenance issues that rendered it “not seaworthy” and that the Transocean staff running it was “incompetent.” Billy Ambrose, Transocean’s Director of Maintenance and Technical Support ... Read More

Halliburton faces court sanctions for withholding well cement samples

BP contractor Halliburton will likely face sanctions for its refusal to turn over samples of the cement it used to seal the doomed Macondo well, which erupted in a series of deadly explosions on April 20, 2010, killing 11 workers and setting off the largest oil spill in U.S. history. According to the Associated Press, a lawyer with Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange’s office said the state would either wait for BP to file a motion calling for sanctions against Halliburton and support it or it would file its own motion. U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier, who is presiding over ... Read More

BP’s safety record scrutinized on third day of oil spill trial

Litigation in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill trial focused on safety matters Wednesday, as plaintiffs’ lawyers worked to portray BP as a company concerned more about saving money and boosting profits than ensuring worker safety and protecting the environment from harm. The highly complex trial began Monday with Judge Carl Barbier, who has been immersed in the oil spill litigation for nearly three years, hearing arguments from both sides. No jury is present in the trial, given the technical nature of the case and the projected three-month timeline for the first phase alone, which is designed to apportion blame for ... Read More

BP’s oil spill liability trial starts amid reports of $16-billion settlement

The trial to determine how much in civil fines BP should pay under the Clean Water Act for polluting the Gulf of Mexico with its 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill started in federal court Monday, as lawyers for the company, the federal government, and four Gulf states continued with their efforts to reach an agreement out of court. According to the New York Times, lawyers briefed on the settlement talks said that a $16 billion payout to settle the claims has been proposed, with one big caveat: BP wants to pay mostly penalties instead of fines, a technicality that would ... Read More