Wednesday, October 7, 2015

BP Will Be Paying for Many Years for Their Most Recent Accident

BP has agreed to pay a record $20 billion to resolve all federal and state claims against the company over its role in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Under the terms of the finalized deal announced by the Justice Department on Monday, BP won’t have to pay all the money at once. Softening the hit to its cash flow, the company is able to spread out payments over a 15-year period. The last installments are due in 2031, more than 21 years after the Deepwater Horizon disaster, which killed 11 crew members and caused the largest oil spill in U.S. waters.

The two biggest pieces of the settlement* are the $5.5 billion in Clean Water Act penalties and the $7.1 billion that BP agreed to pay to the U.S. and Gulf Coast states to cover long-term environmental damages.

Here are the payment schedules for both categories, according to the consent decree filed in federal court in New Orleans on Monday:

Department of Justice
Department of Justice

Attorney General Loretta Lynch called the deal “a strong and fitting response to the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history.” BP officials, as WSJ’s Devlin Barrett notes, have said previously the agreement provides the company, and the Gulf region, “a path to closure,” resolving the largest legal exposure and providing more certainty in terms of costs and payments.


* Total settlement figure also includes $1 billion that BP previously committed for early restoration projects; up to $700 million for any later-discovered injuries or losses or to pay for adjustments to restoration projects; $4.9 billion to five Gulf States, plus another $1 billion to localities, to settle economic-damage claims; and $600 million to settle other claims, including reimbursement for response and removal costs.

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