Oil rig’s owner settles Gulf spill case for $1.4 Billion
The driller whose floating Deepwater Horizon oil rig blew out in 2010 to cause the nation’s biggest oil spill has agreed to settle civil and criminal claims with the federal government for $1.4 billion, the Justice Department announced Thursday.
The Deepwater Horizon exploded, burned and sank in April 2010. Eleven men were killed and millions of gallons of oil flowed into the Gulf of Mexico and fouled the shores of coastal states. The well, known as Macondo, was owned by British oil giant BP, which settled its own criminal charges and some of its civil charges in November for $4.5 billion.
While this settlement resolves the government’s claims against Transocean, that company and the others involved in the spill still face the sprawling, multistate civil case, which is scheduled to begin in February in New Orleans. In a deal filed in federal court in New Orleans, a subsidiary, Transocean Deepwater, agreed to one criminal misdemeanor violation of the Clean Water Act and will pay a fine of $100 million. Over the next five years, the company will pay record civil penalties of $1 billion under the act.
Transocean also agreed to pay the National Academy of Sciences and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation $150 million each. Those funds will be applied to oil spill prevention and response in the Gulf of Mexico and natural resource restoration projects. The agreement will be subject to public comment and court approval. The company agreed to five years of monitoring of its drilling practices and improved safety measures.
In a statement, Transocean Ltd., the Switzerland-based parent of the rig owner, said that the company thought these were “important agreements” and called them a “positive step forward” that were “in the best interest of its shareholders and employees.” Of the 11 men killed on the rig, the company said, “their families continue to be in the thoughts and prayers of all of us at Transocean.”
The company announced in September that it had set an “estimated loss contingency” of $1.5 billion against the Justice Department’s claims.
Shares of Transocean Ltd. rose nearly 3 percent on the news, to close at $49.20.
did you get the last sentence?..the stocks rose on the news..they dodged a bullet and the investors know it..chicken feed..is that an eye in the logo?