BP: “Bitch Please”, you can’t regulate me.


                The largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history, British Petroleum’s (BP) Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico covered the news for months. From scientists to national guards, companies and people repeatedly failed to stop the oil spill for months. As millions of gallons of oil spilled into the ocean, the government continued to rely on BP to clean up the ocean and save the environment. However, BP consistently downplayed their responsibility every chance they could. After 5 months and 206 million gallons of gasoline, the gushing oil was finally contained.

How could we allow such a catastrophic event happen when we know the dangers of oil spills?

The catastrophic event caught millions of people’s attention all around the world. The public was outraged at the negligence and the ignorance of BP’s practices, before and during the cleanup. However, many people failed to investigate the larger picture. People neglected to consider deregulation of the oil industry and both Bushes and Obamas offices assigning ex-oil industry leaders in charge of the departments responsible for safeguarding the environment from oil drillings. This deregulation and conflicting leadership assignment allowed BP to ignore the lenient environmental laws that we did have, while also creating a culture at BP that surrounded profit. This culture caused BP to focus on consistently make profit and ignore the multiple warnings of the tragic oil spill that occurred. BP’s history is full of tragic oil spills that they chose not to learn from because they were only focused on profit and had no one regulating them making sure they adhere to environment laws.

Like Lehman Brothers, Walmart, Nike, Apple, BP focused on making profit over ethics. Even though BP’s history revels numerous oil spills and environmental ignorance, the government and people chose to ignore their behavior because they wanted to maintain the status quo. BP’s chose to act unethically by drilling in a risky place, ignoring mandatory policies and downplaying their responsibility throughout the spill. As a result, millions of gallons spilled into the Gulf killing thousands of fish and birds and causing many people to lose their jobs and land (ruined beaches). Overall, BP’s unethical behavior resulted in a catastrophic event that could have been prevented through government intervention and a change in culture at BP.

 

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5 thoughts on “BP: “Bitch Please”, you can’t regulate me.

  1. That picture of the bird stuck in the oil is pretty terrifying. The Exxon Valdez oil spill back in 1989 was already pretty horrific and damaging. It is hard to believe that the Deepwater Horizon spill was even worse. How could they not have stopped the gushing oil for months? The United States’ dependence on oil is a tricky subject. We will most likely continue to drill for many years to come in increasingly riskier locations. Hopefully more regulation will be put into place before another catastrophe strikes us.

  2. I am also confused how the company could let the oil spill go on for 5 months. That displays the culture of the company and the inability to react quickly to such a horrific event. The event also goes beyond just BP, but also the US government’s inability to go much to step in and help fix the problem. We need for regulation not deregulation in the oil industry in order to prevent future catastrophes and improve the environmental standards in the country. By the way great title!

    • I’m not sure the length of time had as much to do with BP’s past choices as the conditions that led to the initial blow out.

      There may also be the question of whether they lobbied for less stringent regulations or to knowingly drill in a risky area.

  3. How does the contracting relationship between BP and the firm that actually operated the platform affect what happened? Is it like Nike or Apple and their contract manufacturing business model? Does it magnify potential for safety ethics to slip?

    The case is big and gnarly and has tons of info “covering” ( 🙂 ) lots of aspects. There were some investigations by official panels that may be good sources.

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