BP is expected next month when it releases its internal investigation report to reveal it is not the only one to blame for the Deepwater Horizon explosion. The company believes other oil companies and contractors working on the project played a part in causing the disaster. The Deepwater Horizon explosion is responsible for the worst environmental disaster in the US.
During the US Congressional hearings the blame has been put squarely on the shoulders of BP. Outside investigation by the US Coast Guard found 15 risks responsible for the explosion.
BP expects to accept partial blame for the explosion but is hoping to avoid any finding against the company that would rule their actions are grossly negligent. If so, then the company’s insurance would be void. It would be expected that they will strongly defend themselves against such accusations.
Currently under the US’s Clean Water Act, BP faces fines of $1,100 (715 pounds) for each barrel of oil spilt. The fine could rise as high as $4,300 per barrel though if the company is found guilty of gross negligence.
The Macondo well which the Deepwater Horizon was operating on is 65 per cent owned by BP, 25 per cent by Texas based Anadarko and 10 per cent by Japanese company Mitsui. Neither has paid anything toward the cleanup thus far.
Next month BP is expected to hand over compensation claim responsibility to Kenneth Feinberg who has been appointed by the White House to administer the $20 billion fund set up by the company for US loss claims. The internal investigation report is expected to be released next month as well.
Meanwhile, BP shareholders will meet to hear the company’s middle of the year report on Tuesday. Rumors abound that one major announcement will be the resignation of Tony Hayward.