BP, Halliburton & Faulty Cement Jobs: Key Report Doles Out Blame in Gulf Spill


Photo credit: US Coast Guard

Hey everyone, remember the BP spill? Me neither. Well, a key federal report on whatever it was came out today, and it places blame for the disaster exactly where you'd expect: Most is reserved for BP, whose shoddy management decisions ultimately enabled the well's blowout. But blame is also spread to Halliburton for its crappy cement job, and to the rig operator Transocean, for its poor safety culture and shady management calls of its own.

The most fault, however, is still reserved for good ol' BP ...Amid a string of failures, BP's "cost or time-saving decisions ... were contributing causes of the blowout," the report concluded, according to the Guardian. Not exactly revelatory, but there it is. Plenty of folks have covered, in-depth, the lengths to which BP shirked its safety responsibilities to save time and money, and this has yet again been shown to be the case.

The report also says that the "central cause of the blowout was failure of a cement barrier." This too, was largely speculated to be a primary cause of the disaster (of course, we're the true cause of the spill).

Here's the AFP with more:

The loss of 11 lives aboard the rig and the subsequent pollution were "the result of poor risk management, last-minute changes to plans, failure to observe and respond to critical indicators, inadequate well control response, and insufficient emergency bridge response training," the report concluded.

BP has spent $40.7 billion on the biggest maritime oil spill in history and could still be liable
for billions in fines, compensation and restoration costs. It is currently embroiled in a series of lawsuits over apportioning the costs and said in a statement that it agrees with the report's "core conclusion" that the accident was "the result of multiple causes, involving multiple parties, including Transocean and Halliburton."

So everyone effed up. Comforting. You know, it'd almost be preferable if the report came out and said [in a booming, authoritarian voice, of course]: "BP blew it. They, and they alone suck. Worry not about the hundreds of other companies involved in the offshore drilling industry who are probably slacking off just as much or more ..." Yeah, that'd be nice. Magical thinking, of course.

Given the way these companies have been revealed to operate -- and our political institutions' inability to meaningfully reform them -- it's only a matter of time until the next major spill. And the next fast-evaporating outrage, of course.

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More on the BP Gulf Spill
BP Spill One Year Later: The Biggest Unanswered Questions ...
Dispersants Used on BP Spill Contain Chemicals Associated with Cancer

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