BP Agrees To $1 Billion Gulf Restoration Advance, Sues Partners For $80 Billion
The Times-Picayune reported that the agreement includes a $1 billion advance payment for restoration projects, part of a $20 billion trust fund BP established to pay for the damages:
The money will go to the Natural Resource Trustees for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, which includes the states of Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi and Texas, the Department of the Interior and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The trustees will use the money to fund projects such as rebuilding coastal marshes, replenishment of damaged beaches, conservation of sensitive areas for ocean habitat for injured wildlife, and restoration of barrier islands and wetlands that provide natural protection from storms.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal praised the decision, saying: "This agreement is a great first step toward restoring our natural resources destroyed by the BP oil spill."
On Wednesday, BP filed more than $80 billion worth of lawsuits against Transocean and Halliburton, partners on the doomed well:
Wednesday was the deadline -- one year after the disaster -- for companies connected to the spill to file claims against each other.
Analysts said the companies probably did not want the cases to ever get to court, as this would lead to a spectacle which would only further damage their already battered images.
Instead, the suits were seen as tactical moves ahead of settlements that could see some of the burden shared. The litigation is expected to last for years.
The "blame game" is particularly easy to play between BP and its partners because studies into the disaster have found multiple contributing factors, including a faulty blowout preventer and shoddy worksmanship. The sued parties have also filed countersuits against BP, ensuring plenty of billable hours for the companies' legal teams. BP is also suing Cameron International, the maker of the blowout preventer.
Last year BP estimated the spill would cost it $40 billion, an amount the company is seeking from each of its partners on the Macondo well.