Big Oil to House: It Won't Happen to Us

Execs to tell hearing that America needs continued drilling
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 15, 2010 10:20 AM CDT
Exxon Mobil Corp Chairman and Chief Executive Rex W. Tillerson speaks at a news conference following the annual shareholders meeting in Dallas, Wednesday, May. 27, 2009.   (AP Photo/Mike Stone)

(Newser) – The biggest cheeses from the world’s biggest oil companies are on Capitol Hill today to try to convince Congress that the Deepwater Horizon spill was a freak occurrence, and that they can surely be trusted to drill safely. According to prepared testimony, Exxon Mobil’s chairman will also issue a subtle rebuke to BP, saying that if a well is properly designed and workers properly trained, such accidents “should not occur.”

Also in attendance will be executives from Chevron, Shell, Conoco Phillips, and, of course, BP America. Rep. Henry Waxman intends to grill them on their spill response plans, which, he tells the New York Times, were all prepared by an outside contractor and are virtually identical. BP’s version of the plan boasted that it could contain a spill of 250,000 barrels a day. In reality, it's been struggling to deal with 30,000, proving, Waxman says, that the plans are “paper exercises.”

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