NewsFlashBP slapped $60m fine for US violations

25 October 2007 18:34  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--BP agreed on Thursday to pay more than $60m (€42m) in US criminal fines for violations of federal environmental regulations in Texas and Alaska, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said.

BP will pay $50m for the 2005 refinery explosion that killed 15 people and injured more than 170 others at its Texas City, Texas facility, the EPA said. BP will also pay $12m for spilling 200,000 gal of crude oil onto the Alaska tundra and onto a frozen lake in March 2006.

In addition to the penalty, the company will spend about $400m on safety upgrades and improvements to prevent future chemical releases and spills, the EPA said.

This is the largest criminal fine ever assessed against a corporation for Clean Air Act violations. It is also the first criminal prosecution for violating the requirement that refineries and chemical plants take steps to prevent accidental releases. The oil spill fine was imposed under the US Clean Water Act.

"BP committed serious environmental crimes in our two largest states, with terrible consequences for people and the environment," said Granta Nakayama, assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. "Today's agreement sends a message that these types of crimes will be prosecuted."

($1.00 = €0.70)

By: Brian Ford
+1 713 525 2653

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