Big Oil Bailout Prevention Act

On wide swaths of the Gulf were closed to recreational and commercial fishing for at least ten days due to the BP oil drilling disaster. Across the Gulf coast, fishermen, restaurant owners, and those who rely on coastal tourism are already experiencing major economic and emotional challenges. As tough as the initial consequences of this disaster are, the ultimate long-term environmental impacts and economic costs for state and local governments, coastal residents and businesses could be extraordinarily large. Unfortunately, current law only holds BP responsible for $75 million in economic and other damages related to the BP oil drilling disaster.Today, several US Senators announced a new bill, dubbed the “Big Oil Bailout Prevention Act,” which will raise this economic liability cap to $10 billion. As way of explanation, the bill’s primary author, Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey said that “oil spills can leave massive holes in the economy” and “if you spill it, you should have to fill it.” It’s hard to argue with that.Read an article about this proposal, and other Congressional action related to the BP oil drilling disaster here.Raleigh Hoke is GRN’s Mississippi Organizer

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