Scientists studied video of oil and methane gushing from the sea floor. Their flow estimates indicate an Exxon Valdez sized spill every week. So why the minimization from BP and the Obama administration? Risk management.
Wayne Madsen wrote on May 7:
Wayne Madsen Reports has been informed by sources in the US Army Corps of Engineers, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and Florida Department of Environmental Protection that the Obama White House and British Petroleum (BP), which pumped $71,000 into Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign -- more than John McCain or Hillary Clinton, are covering up the magnitude of the volcanic-level oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico and working together to limit BP's liability for damage caused by what can be called a "mega-disaster."Madsen says the administration blocked the true extent of the disaster from agencies capable of assessing and responding to the threat. How will Ken Salazar's investigation continue the risk management moves? Already, BP and Transocean are consolidating lawsuits in oil city, Houston.
It won't be the first time the government helped a corporation manage risk. Frances Fragos Townsend omitted the hospital with the highest patient death toll after Hurricane Katrina. Neither Memorial Medical Center, LifeCare Hospitals (which rented a floor of MMC) nor their corporate owners, Tenet Healthcare and The Carlyle Group, warranted one mention in the White House Lessons Learned report.
Alaska Governor Sarah Palin did her part to minimize the Exxon Valdez spill by calling it 11,000 gallons of fuel on CSPAN. It was 11 million gallons of oil. Twenty years after the disaster, Exxon paid up. The Supreme Court reduced punitive damages from $5 billion to roughly $500 million, a paltry amount for highly profitable Exxon.
Beware language from the Obama administration and BP. Actions speak louder than words.