BP Oil Spill Begins Civil Trial

UGA Professors who are experts in Marine Biology have been involved in many studies with the BP oil spill. The civil trial against BP began today. Invisible oil is still an issue almost three years later.

There are still multiple reports of oil coated coral reefs, fish, and oysters. UGA Professor, Dr. Samantha Joye visited the Gulf back in 2010 to do a study on the oil spill.

Dr. Joye said, “So its not just oil coming out its gas and gas is not something that is just going to wash up on the beach this is something that is going to impact the water in the ocean not just the beach.”

In the civil trial case going on now, the Clean Water act states a polluter will have to pay $1,100 per barrel of spilled oil, fines will almost quadruple to about $4,300 a barrel if found guilty of negligent behavior.

Dr. Joye said, “For every barrell of oil that comes out of the well theres an equivalent of about half of a barrel if you will in the same units of gas.”

The most recent trip to New Orleans was made by UGA Assistant Professor Medeiros and Undergraduate student Meg Adams in January for a meeting on the update of the oil spill.

Meg Adams also plans on doing a CURO summer reasearch fellowship with UGA to the North Pacific in the upcoming summer.

BP could pay the largest environmental fine ever for the cause of the oil spill. The lawsuit is suppose to contine into a second phase this summer unless a settlement is made.

Reporter: Liz Egan

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