BP Denied Government Requests To Fund More Research Of The Oil Spill’s Effects

Last July, BP received notification that more oil spill research is needed from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). NOAA requested that BP pay almost 148 million dollars to fund more research about injury assessment and future restoration efforts. NOAA wants BP to pay more money for research into coastal wetland recovery, including dolphin, whale, and oyster health. BP refused to foot the bill, claiming they shouldn’t have to pay for the research, because they will not be privy to the results, according to Financial Times.

Meanwhile, because of the BP oil spill, dolphins and sea turtles are dying in record numbers in the Gulf of Mexico. A study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that some species of tuna and amberjack that were still developing when the BP oil spill occurred show heart defects directly lined to the oil spill. Arguments over the clean-up of the oil spill in the gulf are becoming a major issue. Billions of dollars in lawsuits still face BP, yet the oil giant says that the active clean up is complete.

BP says that it has already paid over a billion dollars for the Natural Resource Damage Assessment which includes more than 240 studies to provide a full assessment of the damage the oil spill inflicted. BP wants to see the results from the research already completed. It believes that the research could help spare the oil company from compounded civil penalties and that the damage from the oil spill is much less than what was expected. BP says that it was initially told that it would be able to receive reports based on the research findings.

According to BP, the oil giant has already funded work that was incomplete or done improperly. BP also claims it has been double-billed for much of that work. BP said in a company statement, “BP is committed to funding environmental restoration for damage caused by the spill, and a comprehensive scientific assessment of the effects of the spill is the first step in that process.” BP told NOAA it was rejecting most of the government’s requests because it was concerned over “the lack of visibility and accountability” in the process. The oil giant also says it is dissatisfied with the US and coastal states’ governments’ unwillingness to discuss with BP the technical issues surrounding the restoration of the Gulf of Mexico after the oil spill in 2010.