BP to Pay $18.7B Compensation for US Oil Spill…Hard Lesson for Nigeria
According to the Associated Press, the Gulf Coast states and the United States government have reached a tentative settlement with BP for the British oil company to pay $18.7 billion over 18 years, to compensate for damages from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, state officials said Thursday.
“This is a landmark settlement,” Gov. Robert Bentley of Alabama said. “It is designed to compensate the state for all the damages, both environmental and economic.”
The settlement covers suits filed by Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas as well as the federal government.
“This is a far cry from the scenario in Nigeria where oil majors cause both environmental and economic damage to the people of the Niger Delta and get away with it. Immediately after that incident, President Barack Obama rallied the American people to make a case for the affected states; that is responsive and responsible government”, says Clem Ibuforo, an environmentalist based in Warri, Delta State.
He gave knocks to successive Nigerian governments for their inability to bring the oil majors operating in the Niger Delta to account.
“These oil companies got away with murder because of the corruption in the Nigerian government. It is common knowledge that high ranking government officials receive inducements from oil companies to look the other way whenever there is an oil spill and with that they walk away without compensating the people. This is the difference between good governance and bad governance”, an angry Ibuforo fumed.