Just four days before the ninth anniversary of the catastrophic BP Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill, state coastal officials outlined how they are using the disaster’s silver lining—billions of dollars in fines and other payments—to rebuild 5.1 square miles of the state’s eroding coastline, NOLA.com reports.
About $510 million paid by BP and its partners for their roles involving BP’s failed Macondo well in the Gulf of Mexico already has been used to complete restoration work on seven major projects, Greg Gandy, deputy executive director of the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, told authority board members on Wednesday. And another $6.8 billion will be used on dozens of other projects through 2032, the deadline for the companies to pay money owed under various court settlement agreements.
“Even though this is just a start, what we’ve done so far without any Louisiana taxpayers’ dollars is impressive, and there is much more to come,” Grandy told the board. “But let’s never forget why we’re getting this funding and why we need it. The loss of life suffered on that rig, and the oil that flowed into the Gulf for months was devastating to our people, our environment, our economy, our fisheries and wildlife. There is much to remedy, and we are working hard to do just that.” Read the full story.