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Taylor Energy agrees to pay $43 million for Gulf of Mexico spill

Thomas Catenacci

The energy company responsible for the 2004 Gulf of Mexico oil spill agreed to transfer all of its remaining assets under a consent decree.

Taylor Energy will pay $43 million in civil fines and transfer $432 million in trust fund set aside for oil spill cleanup, Justice Department announced Wednesday. In 2004, Hurricane Ivan made landfall in the Gulf of Mexico, destroy one oil drilling platform operated by Taylor Energy off the coast of Louisiana.

The spill was then largely cleaned up by the company, government agencies, and private groups. However, millions of barrels of oil have continued to leak from the area, making it the largest continuous spill in US history, The Washington Post report.

Todd Kim, the DOJ’s assistant attorney general for the environment and natural resources, said in a statement Wednesday.

“If an oil spill occurs, the responsible party must cooperate with the government to promptly resolve the problem and pay for the cleanup,” Kim said. “Holding foreign operators to account is important to protect our environment and ensure a level playing field in the industry.”

The US filed a federal lawsuit against Taylor Energy in October 2020, asking the court to order the company to pay civil penalties, relocation costs, and natural resource damage under the Umbrella Act. Contaminated Oil and Clean Water. Taylor Energy agreed to a deal on Wednesday under a Decree with consent requires approval from a federal court.

In 2008, the company sold its oil and gas production assets and funds an account that will be used to prevent oil spills. Since then, Taylor Energy has remained just one company to respond to the incident.

“The damage to our ecosystem as a result of this 17-year-old oil spill is unacceptable,” U.S. Attorney Duane Evans for the Eastern District of Louisiana said in a statement. “The federal government will hold businesses accountable for violating our Nation’s environmental laws.”

Deputy Interior Minister Tommy Beaudreau commended Coast Guard for its work to reduce the negative impact of the spill on the environment, and said Wednesday’s decision has protected US taxpayers.

Taylor Energy, meanwhile, has long argued that government studies showing oil spills are taking place are inaccurate and omitted key data suggesting otherwise. The company has also only on competitive research that shows the oil has not spilled from its old location.

“Achieving a consensus understanding of the source of the light is absolutely essential before any decisions can be made regarding further action at the MC-20 site,” said president Taylor Energy Will. Pecue said in a May 2020 statement after a study was published. “Everybody, including Taylor Energy, wants to see a reduction or elimination of surface luminosity.”

“Unfortunately, government scientists have over-simplified this complex issue, intentionally omitting important data, withholding acquired data and physical samples, and operating in secret,” said Pecue. “This type of behavior is harmful to defining a responsible path forward for the benefit of the environment and all stakeholders.”

Taylor Energy did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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https://www.tampafp.com/unacceptable-taylor-energy-agrees-to-pay-43-million-over-gulf-of-mexico-spill/ Taylor Energy agrees to pay $43 million for Gulf of Mexico spill

DUSTIN JONES

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