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Posts Tagged ‘BP’

The BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is terrible and tragic example of humanity with a ferocious appetite for oil. You could argue that this demonstrates humanity’s dependency is a weakness which jeopardises our very planet and so the rig should never have been there at all.

You could also argue that instead of spending billions on drilling for oil, that money could have been used to setup solar energy farms in places like New Mexico, Arizona and Utah, because when we do run out of oil, not just solar energy but all forms of renewable energy will be imperative.

Here in the UK we aren’t blessed three hundred days of sun a year. However being and Island nation with a huge coast line we should really putting our eggs in the wave power and wind power technology baskets. If anything comes from this disaster it should be the worldwide understanding that we cannot continue burning fossil fuels at this rate without thinking about the impact and how to deal with it

Whilst one manmade disaster continues to strain the Anglo American friendship, a small natural disaster is just settling down. The Icelandic volcano which spat spewed volcanic ash into the atmosphere which grounded planes and cost companies and economies billions.

When passengers did return home, Ryanair was apparently inundated with compensation claims. The sheer scale of the legal challenge Ryanair faces is like a flashback to the Enron class action lawsuits. The Dublin based carrier at first refused to pay the compensation claims of about 300,000 passengers who were caught up in travel chaos.

Michael O´LearyThe Ryanair boss, Michael O’Leary has said that the airline would attempt to force changes in the regulations by rejecting up to twenty of the most expensive claims. He stated “We will take on 10 or 20 of the most ludicrous claims. We have claims coming from bastards who paid €30 (£25) [for a ticket] and are seeking €3,000 back. We will take a few of those as test cases”.

The airline is expected to take on the most contentious compensation claims in local courts and then take the cases to the European Court, where if they rule in favour of Ryanair, the European Parliament will be forced to cap EU261 payments.

Michael O’Leary went on to say that the European Regulators and Britain’s civil aviation Authority made a “complete dog’s balls” of the situation by shutting European airspace.

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The 20th of April was a very bad day for BP and the consequences of this man-made disaster are now being felt but will inevitably continue and worsen until the spill is contained, cleared up and people are compensated.

Deepwater Horizon rigAs we all know the Deepwater Horizon oil rig was based off the cost of America and quite frankly there could not have been a worse location for there to be a massive oil spill. BP will have to navigate its way through a labyrinth of legal cases and class action lawsuits against them.

The most recent breaking news regarding the oil spill is BP’s decision to pay for the construction of six sand barriers off the coast of the US state of Louisiana in an attempt to protect the fragile wetlands.

At this stage the oil slick has reached Louisiana, a small part of Mississippi, Alabama and is now expected to reach Florida in a few days and it would seem people are already preparing their legal cases.

Several restaurants from Louisiana and Florida have decided to take a proactive step towards recovery by filing a class action case against BP, whom the U.S. Coast Guard has identified as the “responsible party,” according to the Oil Pollution Act.

The class action, dated May 18, was filed on behalf of several plaintiffs who are restaurant owners and others in the seafood service industry who have or will suffer lost profits as a result of the subsequent oil spill following the sinking of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig.

BP also hired workers to help clean up the oil spill, both on the sea surface and on land. It didn’t take too long before workers starting being hospitalised in increasing numbers with high blood pressure, nausea and pounding headaches.

BP oil spillMany of the workers BP hired were fishing crews and they were given a dispersant called Corexit, which is supposed to break the oil into small droplets that are biodegradable. The company which produces the product and BP claim it is safe, but just to be on the safe side Federal agencies have asked BP to limit its use.

If BP thought the worst was over, they were wrong. The “top kill” strategy which has so far failed was a real setback for the company. Every second the leak continues only adds to an already giant bill which BT will have to foot.

Whilst the oil continues to leak BP takes hits from all directions. The share price has suffered with billions wiped of the company’s value. They are losing the very thing they went drilling for in vast quantities, they have agreed to pay for all the clean-up costs, which will go well past $1 billion dollars.

Eleven people died when the oil rig exploded and it is now the biggest man-made disaster in the country’s history. President Obama and his administration have been less than impressed by BP having missed deadline after deadline to fix the leak. The credit rating agency, Fitch has downgraded BP from an AA+ rating to AA.

It is highly plausible that BP will continue to clear up the physical damage from the oil leak for months and it could take years before the legal mess has been sorted out because class actions will be coming at the thick and fast.

As for BP’s relationship with America, it is unlikely to ever fully recover from such a blow.

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