BP reaches settlement on 2010 spill

April 19, 2012 at 8:26 AM

NEW ORLEANS, April 19 (UPI) -- BP announced it reached a definitive agreement that settles the bulk of the claims related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

BP estimates the cost of the settlement at roughly $7.8 billion paid to the Plaintiffs' Steering Committee, which will come from the $20 billion trust fund established for fines and penalties associated with the 2010 spill.

"This settlement demonstrates BP's continued progress in resolving significant issues related to the Deepwater Horizon accident," BP Chief Executive Officer Bob Dudley said.

BP said the settlement pertains to economic loss, property damage and medical claims associated with the April 2010 disaster. The southern U.S. coast was devastated by the spill and 11 rig workers died in the explosion that destroyed the Deepwater Horizon oil rig.

A trustee council said a separate $60 million in restoration projects would begin along the southern U.S. coast.

"The early restoration projects will drive both ecological and economic renewal," said trustee Monica Medina, principal deputy undersecretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere. "Through these and future projects, the trustees intend to build a regional restoration economy."

BP's case with the PSC doesn't address claims from the U.S. government that BP violated the Clean Water Act or other related measures.

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