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Judge Rules BP Grossly Negligent, Rest of Us Say "Well, DUH"

Remember that thing that happened four years ago, when the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded, killing 11 people and injuring many others? And do you also recall that it resulted in the largest oil spill in U.S. history, with an underwater crude oil geyser spilling almost 5 billion (that's billion with a B) barrels of oil into the ocean over the course of 87 days? And do you remember how BP's response to said deaths and oil spill called into question its ability to find its own ass with both hands, a map, and a flashlight?


Funny thing, it turns out a federal judge believes that this was exactly the case, before the event. BP has already been ordered to pay $42 billion dollars (which, if you're curious, comes to about $8.57 for each barrel of oil spilled) for various charges. And today, U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier ruled "The Court concludes that the discharge of oil was the result of gross negligence or willful misconduct" on the part of BP. Judge Barbier has not yet assigned damages to this violation of the Clean Water Act, although some sources are reporting that the worst-case scenario would run up to about $17.6 billion (which would bring the cost per barrel dumped to $12.16).

BP, of course, is planning to appeal.

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