No Settlement for BP - Full Trial. Full Disclosure. Citizen Voice.

  • by: Cherri Foytlin
  • target: Eric Holder, Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice

We the undersigned demand that the civil phase of the BP Macondo trial proceed on Feb 25, and that BP not be allowed to buy their way out with a premature settlement. For the sake of our national security, oilfield workers and their families, gulf coast communities and ecosystems, and all who depend on a stable and growing economy in the gulf, we ask for:

Full trial, no settlement, full disclosure and citizen participation

The board of directors who made excessive demands on drilling engineers and offshore operations for cost cutting should suffer criminal and civil liability for human fatalities and injuries as well as ecosystem destruction caused by land and water pollution. 

The record of the Joint Hearings task force (MMS/US Coast Guard) shows that in every case where BP had a choice, they ignored health, safety and environmental risks in favor of production and profit. The Oil Spill Commission’s report on the Deepwater Horizon blowout described the incident as “an entirely preventable disaster.” BP employee email traffic captured in the report shows an extremely dysfunctional chain of command, a stressed workforce, and an alarmingly uninformed management team. The report describes the causes of the disaster as being due to “Overarching Failures of Management.”





BP already had a record of disasters including the Texas City refinery explosion, Thunderhorse, Atlantis, and the Alaska pipeline leaks. Jeanne Pascal, former EPA debarment attorney wo obtained four convictions against BP in Alaska, said that "BP is a a serial corporate polluter and a serial corporate killer."




The most important thing the Department of Justice can do to re[resent the public interest is to make sure there is a full and complete record of what happened during the Deepwater Horizon tragedy. Transparency is synonymous with justice and a closed door settlement between DOJ BP Transocean etc. will undermine the public trust. If DOJ proceeds in the sunlight, then we won't be required to question their calls. However if these matters are settled through a secret deal before the scheduled February 25, civil trial then we will be required to hold additional hearings to unearth what really took place during the largest envrironmental disaster in U.S. history.




We further request that any verdict or settlement in the case require the establishment of an interdiciplinary advisory committee on oversight of offshore drilling comprised of public and private stakeholders who are involved in or impacted by Gulf of Mexico offshore drilling.




BP management operates on the edge of unacceptable risk and should be held accountable. We respectfully request full trial, no settlement, full disclosure and citizen participation.  

 

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