EPA Considers Cutting All Contracts With BP

Move would cost the company billions of dollars
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 22, 2010 1:46 PM CDT
Tug boats pull a tank, center, containing oil and water skimmed from the surface of the Gulf of Mexico.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
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(Newser) – News to cheer those who say the government has gone too easy on BP: The EPA is considering scrapping its federal contracts, a move that would cost the company billions, reports Pro Publica. It's far from a done deal, and any such action would depend on the results of the Gulf investigation. But if the company is found culpable, it might no longer be allowed to drill in federally controlled areas.

That's because the Gulf spill isn't BP's first problem. It's paid "tens of millions in fines and been implicated in four separate instances of criminal misconduct" over the last decade, says Pro Publica. In fact, the company was in talks with the EPA before the Gulf spill about penalties and reportedly took a confrontational attitude toward any settlement. Those talks are now suspended, and "as more evidence is gathered about what went wrong in the Gulf, BP may soon wish it hadn't," writes Abrahm Lustgarten.

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