BP P.L.C. is a company that has been in the energy business for more than a century. This corporation has been improving its operations in different parts of the world thanks to its constant research, and it has become a world leader as an oil and gas producer. Also, it is one of the pioneers in deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, and it is the largest lease holder in the United States with more than 650 lease blocks in waters greater than 1,250 feet. Unfortunately, BP had the record of the biggest oil spill in the area. On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon rig operating in the Gulf of Mexico experienced a well blowout which sank the platform and resulted in the release of oil into the Gulf, a great catastrophe for the environment that the company and the world will not forget.
In this paper, we are going to study the legal consequences for the company, and the ethical considerations for this disaster. Hence, we are going to analyze how the organization took a risk with its deepwater drilling, what the company did to solve the problem, how it plans to keep drilling in deepwater using new safety precautions, how the court is developing the case, and the ethical considerations in future operations.
BP Drilling in Deepwater
BP took the initiative to drill in deepwater because of its global experience, the extent of its discoveries in the area, and its presence in the Gulf of Mexico for more than 25 years. Furthermore, BP had the technology, workforce, and all the requirements under the United States law to perform the activity.
According to BP P.C.L., the Deepwater Horizon accident was caused because the blowout preventer equipment (BOP) couldn’t control the flow of oil and gas and its emergency functions failed. Because of this, the personnel working at that time couldnot avert the tragedy.
However, according to investigations made by the U.S. Coast Guard, and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management,
References: Achenbach J. & Fahrenthold D.A. (2010, August 3) Oil spill dumped 4.9 million barrels into Gulf of Mexico, latest measure shows. The Washington Post. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/02/AR2010080204695.html Dudley, B. (2011, April 19) The Lessons of Deepwater Horizon; Changing BP alone is not enough--the entire oil industry has to make better preparation for the possibility of future spills. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.stedwards.edu:5000/wallstreetjournal/docview/862562168/135D64EB5594B7FF8B5/13?accountid=7075 Fowler, T. (2013, Apr 18). Corporate news: Testimony ends in BP trial --- judge to assess civil culpability for energy firms in deepwater horizon disaster. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from https://ezproxy.stedwards.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/1328220381?accountid=7075 Gold, R. (2010, Jul 19). Rig 's final hours probed --- spill investigators focus on 20 'anomalies ' aboard doomed deepwater horizon. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from https://ezproxy.stedwards.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/613624174?accountid=7075 MDL No. 2179 (2013). In Re: Oil spill by the oil rig "Deepwater Horizon" in the Gulf of Mexico, on APRIL 20, 2010. United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana, 2010