Shoddy Work, Shabby Excuses

Lessons from the BP debacle

The Deepwater Horizon disaster will probably be remembered as the most severe environmental catastrophe of the early twenty-first century—an accident that would have been as easy to prevent as it is now difficult to clean up.

Every oil or gas rig ought to be able to anticipate and respond to the kind of problems that led to the spill (gas “kicks,” equipment malfunctions, operator errors). These are routine problems encountered by every drilling operation, but that does not mean they...

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About the Author

Tom Speight is an environmental scientist and certified hazardous materials manager who works on assessment and cleanup projects.