Environmental Crimes: Could this be the end of BP?

https://readthespirit.com/ourvalues/wp-content/uploads/sites/17/2013/03/wpid-dc_Oil_skimming_operations.jpgReady or not, BP is now under criminal investigation. Attorney General Eric Holder announced the probe earlier this week.

What do you think of it? Is it the right thing to do? Is now the right time to do it?

The government wants to “ensure that anyone found responsible for this spill is held accountable,” Holder said in his statement. That means enforcing the appropriate civil—and if warranted, criminal—authorities to the full extent of the law.” Holder noted the tragic loss of 11 lives in the Deepwater Horizon fire and explosion. “As we examine the causes of the explosion and subsequent spill, I want to assure the American people that we will not forget the price those workers paid.

“We will ensure that every cent of taxpayer money will be repaid and damages to the environment and wildlife will be reimbursed.

https://readthespirit.com/ourvalues/wp-content/uploads/sites/17/2013/03/wpid-dc_US_Coast_Guard_photo_of_robotic_arm_trying_to_activate_Deepwater_Horizon_blowout_preventer.jpgTWO OF THE MANY ATTEMPTS TO DEAL WITH THE DISASTER: The photo above shows ongoing oil-skimming efforts, which haven’t kept oil from washing up on beaches. The lower photo was taken by U.S. Coast Guard cameras shortly after the disaster showing a failed attempt by a remote robot arm to reactivate the Deepwater Horizon’s blowout preventer.“We will make certain that those responsible clean up the mess they have made and restore or replace the natural resources lost or injured in this tragedy. And we will prosecute to the full extent any violations of the law.”

Holder cited several applicable statutes, including the Clean Water Act, Oil Pollution Act of 1990, Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and Endangered Species Act.

BP is in a heap of trouble and the markets know it. BP’s inability to staunch the undersea oil gusher already caused its stock price to drop. The news of the criminal investigation made it drop like a stone—to the point that news media in the U.K., like the Guardian, are speculating that BP may become a takeover target.

Would the end of BP be just? Would it be a fitting payment for the damages the spill creates? Or, would the end of BP just be another tragedy on top of the environmental tragedy?

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(Originally posted in www.OurValues.org)

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