Disenfranchised Citizen

Chicago, New Orleans and living a beautiful, angry life between the two…

Another coincidence, BP settlement style…

with 2 comments

Great job boys! With lawyers like you, who needs moralities?

The settlement between British Petroleum and the Plaintiff Steering Committee has been reported to be $7.8 billion dollars, and also without a cap. This means that when all is said and done, if the settlement amount exceeds this monetary figure, well…so be it as British Petroleum has maintained the $7.8 billion dollar amount is only an estimate…could be more, could be less.

Either way, consider the plaintiffs paid.

So yeah, I guess that sounds pretty good and hey, at least more of the people who’ve been waiting all this time while their lives were torn asunder, at least now they will finally…wait, what?

The settlement is different for those with seafood claims? What do you mean, it’s different?

From David Hammer’s article in the Times Picayune:

“In the BP oil spill case,  a key component of the proposed class-action settlement between private plaintiffs and BP is a $2.3 billion set-aside for seafood claims, the only part of the settlement that’s capped. That’s what BP is willing to pay to compensate commercial fishing vessel owners, captains and deckhands, as well as oyster leaseholders and harvesters.”

Perfect.

So there is a cap for part of this settlement, and it’s geared specifically for those making seafood claims…Okay, well now, $2.3 billion dollars is still a lot of money. The actual amounts paid to the plaintiffs couldn’t possibly exceed this amount, could they?

Short answer?

Yes.

After the Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, it wasn’t until four years later the herring fishery collapsed, ruining the livelihoods of so many for years, not to mention the damage to the ecosystem.

But we’ve all heard the reports of the differences here…couldn’t possibly happen in the Gulf. The BP scientists were all over this and the Gulf is so much bigger, and the water is warmer and that makes all the difference, yes?

Perhaps…perhaps in the Gulf, it won’t take four years.

It may only take two…

From Stuart Smith’s blog -

The docks and marinas in hard-nosed fishing communities like Pointe-aux-Chenes and Venice, Louisiana, should be bustling this time of year, but today they are eerily quiet and undisturbed, like a world frozen in perpetual limbo – waiting, hoping, praying for the Gulf’s once-bountiful (even legendary) fisheries to produce again. Current reports from up and down the coast indicate the situation is dire indeed.

The oysters have been wiped out. The harvest for 2010 was the worst in more than four decades. And there’s been little improvement since then as oystermen continue to report catches down as much as 75 percent, from Yscloskey to Grand Isle. Some estimates put this year’s harvest at roughly 35 percent of the normal yield – and that’s if we’re lucky. Crab catches are in steep decline. Brown shrimp production is down two-thirds. And the white shrimp season was even worse, leading to descriptions of “worst in memory” and “nonexistent.”

Also, from an article by Dahr Jamail -

“I was at a BP coastal restoration meeting yesterday and they tried to tell us they searched 6,000 square miles of the seafloor and found no oil, thanks to Mother Nature,” Tuan Dang, a shrimper, told Al Jazeera while standing on a dock full of shrimp boats that would normally be out shrimping this time of year. Dang’s fishing experience has been bleak. “Normally I can get 8,000 pounds of brown shrimp in four days,” he explained. “But this year, I only get 800 pounds in a week. There are hardly any shrimp out there.”

When he tried to catch white shrimp, he said he “caught almost nothing”. He is suing BP for loss of income, but does not have much hope, despite recent news of an initial settlement worth more than $7bn. “We’d love to see them clean this up so we can get our lives back, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon.”

Song Vu, a shrimp boat captain for 20 years, has not tried to shrimp for weeks, and is simply hoping that there will be shrimp to catch next season. His experience during his last shrimping attempts left him depressed. “The shrimp are all dead,” he told Al Jazeera. “Everything is dead.”

And experts estimate it could be years before things get back to normal.

That’s years of running up against this cap in the settlement the Plaintiff Steering Committee has agreed to with BP.

That’s years of potential catastrophe with no recourse.

Years, all while British Petroleum continues to make billions of dollars in profit while the Gulf continues to suffer, all as a result of British Petroleum’s actions…and let’s not forget that along with this cap, the settlement also negates punitive damages, and this is not a coincidence, not at all. This is a hasty agreement that leaves thousands in the lurch for what could very well be the collapse of the Gulf’s fisheries…

 And this is British Petroleum, business as usual.

Read the articles:

In BP oil spill case, court names mediator in $2.3 billion seafood claims settlement

“Everything Is Dead”: Gulf Fisheries Collapse Nearly Two Years After BP Oil Spill

Gulf fisheries in decline after oil disaster

Have a nice day.

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2 Responses

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  1. it’s so ridiculous – everyone who received an emergency advance payment also received an admission of liability / guilt – a confession. It cam attached to the first EAP check.

    And in a civil trial where the burden of proof is on the plaintiff that alone reduces the burden. Then combine that with preponderance of evidence and winning a civil case shouldn’t be difficult.

    le

    March 11, 2012 at 11:57 AM

  2. The worst is still to come…
    What good is offering 4 timesanything if you just start deducting voo pmts from that amount … and the final settlement amounts too nothing or just enough to cover a few months expenses
    BP plans on deducting Voo Pmts from Shrimpers settlement after promising they would NOT do that.
    In one hand they offered us 4 times the 2010 losses then start deducting pmt under Voo…
    BP made promises that any payment or money earned from Voo would not be deducted.grrrrrrrr.
    They did that to get the boats they needed to clean up….they were unsure of what was needed in April2010,
    We believed them and chose to work while others did NOT.

    Now The final settlement will be greater for the ones that didnt work.

    This is just what I heard and read….and there hasnt been much talk about this…wonder why?

    I feel like I worked for free…or at least my bottom line indicates that….This is not good……

    I dont understand why the PSC would accept that….or Judge Barbier.

    deb99

    March 11, 2012 at 9:04 PM


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