BP boss: US oil spill tiny
Is this guy for real? This is already the worst environmental disaster in US history, having eclipsed the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster and this guy says the spill is tiny. Tell that to all the fishermen who’s livelihoods have been destroyed. Rather admit your fault and concentrate on plugging the leak instead of making such ridiculous statements.
London – BP chief executive Tony Hayward claims that the Gulf of Mexico oil spill is relatively “tiny” but admits that his job is at risk over the incident blamed on his company.
Hayward told Friday’s Guardian newspaper that the leaked oil and the estimated 400 000 gallons of dispersant that BP had pumped into the sea to try to tackle the slick should be put in context.
“The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean. The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume,” Hayward said.
Asked if he felt his job was under threat, he replied: “I don’t at the moment. That of course may change. I will be judged by the nature of the response.”
BP is facing a growing backlash in the United States as experts warn the spill may be at least 10 times bigger than an official estimate.
Hayward insisted that deep-water drilling would continue in the United States despite angry responses to the incident from environmentalists and politicians.
Hayward said it was “unwise” to speculate about the direct causes of the accident before investigations had been completed. “There is a lot of speculation, red herrings and hearsay.”
But he admitted that BP had made mistakes in its early response to the crisis. It initially refused to compensate fishermen who were unable to produce written proof of their normal earnings, according to The Guardian.
“It was a bit bumpy to get it going. We made a few little mistakes early on,” he said.
He has meanwhile refused to watch television news or read newspaper reports about the incident.
“I don’t want my judgement to be clouded by what has been written,” the BP chief said, adding that he would remain based in the United States until the crisis was contained.
The US Coast Guard has said that 5 000 barrels (210 000 gallons) of crude were gushing from a ruptured well each day.
However, scientists analysing video of the leak released by BP claim that it was closer to 70 000 barrels (2.94 million gallons) a day, with an estimated margin of error of plus or minus 20%.
The findings suggest the spill is already the worst environmental disaster in US history, having eclipsed the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster.
The company’s market value has slumped by about $29bn since the incident.