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Gulf Coast States Announce Civil Settlement With BP

A deal announced today resolves all civil claims against BP arising from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill.

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Texas, four other Gulf states and the Justice Department have finalized a settlement of more than $20 billion arising from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. After a 60-day comment period, the deal will resolve all civil claims against BP.

Details were announced Monday by Attorney General Lynch at a news conference. The settlement was first announced in July.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said Texas’ share totals more than $800 million.

“The disaster of Deepwater Horizon was a tragedy that touched people’s lives all along the Gulf Coast, from those who love its natural beauty and wildlife, to those who make their living from the water,” said Attorney General Ken Paxton in an emailed statement. “This agreement will help restore our natural resources and strengthen the communities that rely on them. Texas as a whole will benefit from this settlement.”

This ends a five-year legal fight that followed the April 2010 offshore oil rig explosion that killed 11 workers. The massive oil spill that followed is considered to be one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history.

“It feels incredible to be where we are in this process, that we’re seeing a payment plan come out from BP, right?” says Amanda Fuller, who works with the National Wildlife Federation’s Gulf Restoration Program. “So funds are slated to move in early 2017, in addition to some of the early restoration funds that they’ve already put up in the last couple of years.”

Takeaways

  • BP has already paid $5.84 billion in payouts.
  • BP to pay $8.1 billion in natural resource damages.
  • BP to pay $5.5 billion in Clean Water Act penalties over a 15 year period.
  • BP to pay $700 million to address natural resource conditions presently unknown.
  • BP to pay five Gulf states (including Texas) $4.9 billion in total and up to 1 billion in local claims.

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