Exxon Valdez disaster legacy lives on

Paul Rogers

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Nov 30, 2000
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quote:

- still the world's worst environmental disaster.
And yet, according to Neil Wilson in his book "Great Sea Disasters (1998)" the amount of oil spilled: "...was small compared to the Torrey Canyon and Amoco Cadiz disasters." He states also that the Exxon Valdez disaster was: "...the worst spill in US history."

In the article linked by Boz it states that: "Eleven million gallons of crude oil..." leaked from Exxon Valdez. I have no idea how that converts to tons, but Neil Wilson puts the figure at 35,000 tons (35,560 tonnes) compared to 119,190 tons (121,100 tonnes) from Torrey Canyon and 223,000 tons (226,570 tonnes) from Amoco Cadiz.

Imagine what the Alaskan wilderness would have looked like if either of the above spills had occurred there...

Regards,
Paul.
 
Jul 11, 2001
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The legacy will live on forever. In the Kevin Costner movie "Waterworld" it has the bad guys (Led by Dennis Hopper) traveling in an old Oil Tanker. Only in the final scenes do you see the name Exxon Valdez painted on the stern!

David
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Seattle Times:

Exxon seeks Supreme Court review of oil-spill fine
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Exxon Mobil Corp. is making a final appeal for a review of a court decision ordering the oil giant to pay $2.5 billion in punitive damages for the Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989.

Exxon Mobil has been battling the judgment for more than a decade. The company has managed to get the award cut in half from the original $5 billion awarded in 1994 by an Anchorage jury to the plaintiffs in the class-action suit stemming from the nearly 11 million-gallon crude oil spill in Prince William Sound.
For the rest, see http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2003848272_webexxon22.html

Comment: 18 years after the fact and the litigation still goes on.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Yahoo News:

Exxon Valdez plaintiffs want $5 billion award restored
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Reuters) - Plaintiffs in the long-running case surrounding the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil disaster this week asked the U.S. Supreme Court to restore a $5 billion punitive fine against Exxon Mobil Corp, a petition filed with highest U.S. court shows.
For more, go to http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070831/us_nm/exxon_valdez_alaska_dc
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Hellenic Shipping News:

U.S. Supreme Court to review punitive damages in Exxon Valdez case
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The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to decide whether Exxon Mobil Corp. should pay $2.5 billion in punitive damages in connection with the huge Exxon Valdez oil spill that fouled more than 1,200 miles (1,930 kilometers) of Alaskan coastline in 1989.
The high court stepped into the long-running battle over the damages that Exxon Mobil owes in the spillage of 11 million gallons of oil into Alaska's Prince William Sound, the worst oil spill in U.S. history.
The Exxon Valdez supertanker had run aground on a reef. A federal appeals court already had cut in half the $5 billion in damages awarded by a jury in 1994.
The justices said they would consider whether the company should have to pay any punitive damages at all. If the court decides some money is due, Exxon is arguing that $2.5 billion is excessive under laws governing shipping and prior high court decisions limiting punitive damages.
For the rest, see http://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/index.php?mod=article&cat=Energynews&article=4086
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The State:

Exxon seeks reduced damages in Alaska oil spill
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WASHINGTON --Exxon Mobil will argue before the Supreme Court that the $2.5 billion it was ordered to pay in punitive damages in the Exxon Valdez case - one of the largest awards ever against an American corporation - was in conflict with more than 200 years of maritime law.

Exxon filed a brief in the case Monday, arguing mostly that trial and appellate courts erred in blaming the company for the actions of its ship captain when the tanker Exxon Valdez hit a reef in Prince William Sound in 1989 and spilled nearly 11 million gallons of crude oil.
For the rest, see http://www.thestate.com/361/story/262467.html

Comment: It ain't over yet. The game goes on!
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Finally closure in Exxon oil spill case?

Almost 20 years after Valdez wreck, justices to weigh in
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When a federal jury in Alaska in 1994 ordered Exxon to pay $5 billion to thousands of people who had their lives disrupted by the massive Exxon Valdez oil spill, an appeal of the nation's largest punitive damages award was inevitable.

But almost no one could have predicted the incredible round of legal ping-pong that only this month lands at the Supreme Court.

In the time span of the battle -- 14 years after the verdict, nearly two decades since the spill itself -- claimants' lawyers say there is a new statistic to add to the grim legacy of the disaster in Prince William Sound: Nearly 20 percent of the 33,000 fishermen, Native Alaskans, cannery workers and others who triumphed in court that day are dead.
Two page story begins at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23315812/
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Hellenic Shipping News:

Court slashes judgment in Exxon Valdez disaster
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The Supreme Court on Wednesday slashed the $2.5 billion punitive damages award in the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster to $500 million. The court ruled that victims of the worst oil spill in U.S. history may collect punitive damages from Exxon Mobil Corp., but not as much as a federal appeals court determined.
Full story at http://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=10831&Itemid=31

Comment: The diva has sung the final piece of the opera? Don't count on it.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From Boston.com:

Judge OKs first Exxon Valdez oil spill payments
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska–Thousands of Alaska fishermen and other plaintiffs should receive their portion of punitive damages in the Exxon Valdez oil spill lawsuit before the end of November, a federal judge said.

Judge H. Russel Holland on Monday ordered the release of $151 million of the negotiated $383 million settlement stemming from a lawsuit filed in the nation's worst oil spill nearly two decades ago.
More at http://www.boston.com/business/articles/2008/11/25/judge_oks_first_exxon_valdez_oil_spill_payments/
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From CBS:

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill: 20 Years Later
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(CBS) John Platt - a fisherman from Cordova, Alaska - made a pretty penny in the good old days. That was back in the 80's when an Alaskan fisherman could work hard and make a good living.

That was then. This is now. "My current financial situation is terrible," Platt says, "It's terrible."

He still earns his living fishing. But today Platt is deep in dept. He's waiting on a check he will never cash.
More at http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/02/02/eveningnews/main4769329.shtml
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Miami Herald:

Captain of Exxon Valdez offers ‘heartfelt apology' for oil spill
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Joe Hazelwood, captain of the doomed oil tanker Exxon Valdez, is offering "a very heartfelt apology" to Alaskans for the disastrous 1989 oil spill in Prince William Sound.

The apology comes at the end of a new, 288-page book commemorating the 20th anniversary of the spill. The book features 62 "personal stories" from people involved with the spill, from people aboard the tanker to Alaska politicians to cleanup workers to U.S. Coast Guard officers to reporters who covered one of the state's biggest stories.
More at http://www.miamiherald.com/news/environment/story/934094.html

Comment: Doomed oil tanker? Uhhhh...Mr. Reporter, you might want to check your facts. The ship was refloated, repaired, and put back into service, albit under a different name.
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Oil plagues sound 20 years after Exxon Valdez
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Twenty years after the Exxon Valdez spilled 11 million gallons of crude oil in Alaska's Prince William Sound, oil persists in the region and, in some places, "is nearly as toxic as it was the first few weeks after the spill," according to the council overseeing restoration efforts.

"This Exxon Valdez oil is decreasing at a rate of 0-4 percent per year," the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council stated in a report marking Tuesday's 20th anniversary of the worst oil spill in U.S. waters.
Two page story begins at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29838444/
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Exxon ordered to pay interest on Valdez award
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SAN FRANCISCO - Exxon Mobil Corp. was ordered Monday to pay about $500 million in interest on punitive damages for the Exxon Valdez oil spill off Alaska, nearly doubling the payout to Alaska Natives, fishermen, business owners and others harmed by the 1989 disaster.

The ruling was issued by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.
More at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31376335/ns/business-us_business/
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From The Hellenic Shipping News:

Exxon to pay interest on Valdez oil spill damages
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Oil giant Exxon Mobil Corp. has decided not to appeal hundreds of millions of dollars in interest on punitive damages resulting from the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill. The Irving, Texas-based company will pay about $470 million in interest on more than $507.5 million in punitive damages following the 11 million gallon spill of crude in Prince William Sound, company spokesman Tony Cudmore said Monday.
More at http://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=54095&Itemid=79
 
Dec 2, 2000
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From MSNBC:

Exxon Valdez oil still trapped on beaches
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska - An engineering professor has figured out why oil remains trapped along miles of gravel beaches more than 20 years after the Exxon Valdez tanker disaster in Prince William Sound.

An estimated 20,000 gallons of crude remain in Prince William Sound, even though oil remaining after the nearly 11-million-gallon spill had been expected to biodegrade and wash away within a few years.

The problem:
More at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34908872/ns/us_news-environment/