New Orleans, US | – BP plc offered a $45 million settlement to New Orleans, which will use the funds for water management and coastal restoration, the city’s mayor said.
New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced the acceptance of the settlement offer from BP, which he said devastated the city’s economy and environment when the cascading series of failures sank the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.
“We will continue to deal with the long-term impacts of this disaster for years to come. However, this settlement is a positive step by BP to begin to repair the damage done,” he said in a statement. “Moving forward, government and industry must come together to be more aggressive in not only restoring our coast, but also in preventing the next oil spill wherever it may occur.”
The April 2010 incident left 11 rig workers dead and spoiled more than 57,000 square miles of Gulf waters that were subsequently closed to Louisiana’s recreational and commercial fishing. The city said it would use the funds for water management as well as coastal and ecosystem restoration.
The $45 million represents the city’s share of the settlement BP reached last week with five states bordering the Gulf of Mexico.
Louisiana was party to the multi-state suit against the British energy company. The U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Louisiana ruled last year that BP released 3.2 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, about 1 million barrels less than the government estimated.
In early July, an appeals court in Louisiana granted a new trial for a former BP engineer, Kurt Mix, on grounds of jury exposure to external evidence. Mix was tasked with determining the amount of oil leaking from the Macondo well after Deepwater Horizon collapsed, later convicted of obstruction of justice for deleting text messages and other correspondence related to those calculations.