Journalism in the Public Interest

Gulf Oil Spill

BP Agrees to Plead Guilty to Crimes in Gulf Oil Spill


BP agreed to plead guilty today to charges of manslaughter, environmental crimes, and lying to Congress in connection with the 2010 Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion, which killed 11 workers and sent as much as 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.

As part of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice, the company will pay $4.5 billion in what is the largest fine ever levied on a corporation in the United States.

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Gulf Spill Paymaster Acknowledges Transparency Problems and Outlines Fixes

Kenneth Feinberg said he recognized shortcomings in communicating with claimants and promised to give them more information going forward.

Oil Spill Commission’s Missing Document Adds Insight to Gulf Investigation

A new document uncovered last week might help to clear up some confusion over comments made earlier this month by the Oil Spill Commission's chief counsel.

BP Probation Officer Asks Judge to Revoke Probation, Citing ‘Criminal Negligence’

In a court filing, a federal probation officer said that BP acted negligently in the run-up to a 2009 spill—violating the terms of its probation for a spill in 2006.

Some Gulf Spill Claimants Waiting for Months: Feinberg Blames Tricky Policy Decisions

Some claimants from the Gulf oil spill have been waiting for months without a decision, and claims czar Ken Feinberg says the problem is in deciding, ‘What should we do with that claim?’

Corrosion Warnings at BP Facilities in Alaska: Here’s What the Data Mean

Following up on our earlier reporting, we explain what it means that 148 of BP's pipelines in Alaska have been ranked for "failure" by BP inspectors, according to documents we received from BP workers.

With All Eyes on the Gulf, BP Alaska Facilities Are Still at Risk

BP oil workers on Alaska’s North Slope say that another deadly accident or environmental disaster could happen at any time because of BP’s continued cost-cutting and inattention to aging systems there.

Federal Inspectors Clueless About Cementing, Oil Spill Panel Finds

Halliburton's cement mixture may have contributed to BP's deadly blowout, but federal inspectors knew next to nothing about cementing, says the government's oil spill panel.

The Questions BP Didn’t Answer

Full disclosure on the questions put to BP and how the company responded.

Why Tracking BP Worker Deaths Is Tricky

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) uses record-keeping methods that make it difficult to track worker fatalities that BP and other oil companies are responsible for.

Furious Growth and Cost Cuts Led To BP Accidents Past and Present

An EPA attorney tried for 12 years to make oil giant BP operate safely. Now, recently retired, she says BP should be banned from doing business with the U.S. government. A ProPublica and PBS FRONTLINE investigation.

Slideshow: A Tour of BP

The Documentary BP Wants You to Disregard

BP CEO Robert Dudley warned London's business leaders today that an upcoming report and documentary from ProPublica and PBS FRONTLINE would paint an unflattering picture of the company.

Gulf Spill Victims’ ‘Escalated’ Claims Still Languishing

Claimants from the BP Gulf Coast oil spill who have been promised quicker payments find their “expedited” claims still slow in coming.

Gulf Spill Fund Offers Little Information to Claimants

Acknowledging his operation should be doing a better job of providing information, the claims czar promises to deploy more agents in the Gulf to respond to desperate claimants.

Oil Spill Commission Hits Feds on Flow Rate, Dispersant, How Much Oil Is Left

The presidential commission investigating BP’s Deepwater Horizon disaster found that a number of public failures undermined public confidence in the federal government.

Gulf Compensation Czar Says Claims Will No Longer Face Geographic Test

Kenneth Feinberg said proximity to the BP oil spill in the Gulf will no longer be used in determining whether a claim is eligible for payment.

In School Outreach, BP and NOAA ‘Dispel Myths’ About Dispersants, Subsurface Oil

After its five-month-long oil spill saga, BP and the government set out to show children in local schools that “oil floats,” and that Gulf seafood is safe, according to local reports.

Anonymous Tipline

If you work for BP or a contractor on a rig in the Gulf, or anywhere else, we’d like to hear from you. Tell us about your work conditions, your management, and your observations of what is happening. We will not publish your identity. Call 917-512-0254, fax documents to 212-514-5250 or e-mail

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