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Bentley, Strange announce agreement in BP oil spill case

Governor Robert Bentley announced Thursday that the State of Alabama has reached an agreement in principle to settle its lawsuit with BP for damages caused by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This landmark agreement, announced at a news conference in Montgomery by Bentley and Attorney General Luther Strange, is designed to compensate the state for both environmental and economic damages as a result of the disaster. Bentley celebrated the victory for the state.

“The BP/ Deepwater Horizon oil spill was the worst environmental disaster in United States history, and the impact to the Alabama Gulf Coast was detrimental,” Bentley said. “We have reached an agreement in principle with BP to compensate the state for all of the environmental and economic damages suffered as a result of the oil spill. With the agreement announced today, we are taking a significant step forward in our state and will become a stronger, safer and more resilient state as a result of this terrible disaster.”

The BP/Deepwater Horizon oil spill began on April 20, 2010, about 100 miles off Alabama’s coast, killing 11 people and causing oil to flow into the Gulf of Mexico. For nearly three months, an estimated 3.19 million barrels of oil flowed into the Gulf. Alabama experienced significant environmental and economic damages as a result of the oil spill.

The total value of the agreement in principle is approximately $18.5 billion for all of the affected Gulf States’ economic losses, natural resource damages and BP’s Clean Water Act penalties. Alabama’s share of this global agreement is over $2 billion. On the economic side, $1 billion will be paid to the State over the next 18 years for economic damages suffered. On the environmental side, Alabama will receive approximately $1.3 billion over the next 15 years that will be used to facilitate coastal restoration projects in Alabama. Strange also applauded the gains for the state.

“From the first day that Governor Bentley and I took office, we’ve worked together to secure justice for Alabama in the wake of the tragic BP oil spill,” Strange said. “That teamwork has led us to today’s record settlement and a positive legacy for the future.”

Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Commissioner Gunter Guy credited the funds that were obtained to those who had worked with Alabama.

“It is important to commend BP, our Federal partners and the other Gulf Coast states for their efforts to get this agreement accomplished,” Guy said. “We look forward to working with Alabama’s coastal communities to identify, develop and implement appropriate projects to restore our resources and the services they provide.”

This agreement only relates to the State of Alabama’s claims against BP, and it does not affect the claims of other people.