A new cash settlement will be given to the Gulf of Mexico science and restoration project, due to the federal charges related to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The company that operated the drilling rig for BP, Transocean Deepwater, has agreed to pay $1.4 billion in civil and criminal fines and penalties for the spill.
This was announced by the US Department of Justice today. Transocean will pay $1 billion for violations of the Clean Water Act, 80% of which will be dedicated to economic and ecological restoration projects along the Gulf Coast, under legislation approved last year by the US Congress.
The US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) will get $150 million to help fund an independent, 30-year Gulf Coast research program created under a similar settlement with BP last November. The payment by Transocean will bring the total funding up to $500 million. Transocean will also provide $150 million to the US National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) for ecological restoration projects along the Gulf. NFWF has already received $2.4 billion from the earlier settlement by BP.
BP and Transocean are still facing further financial liability for the spill. They will be billed by the US government for the natural resource damages caused by the spill. BP also faces civil charges under the Clean Water Act, which could produce fines from $5 billion to more than $20 billion, 80% of which would be dedicated to economic and ecological restoration along the Gulf Coast.