Markey: BP Lied to the American People, Lied to Me

Settlement Includes Guilty Plea for Lying to Congress, Manipulating Data on Flow Rate of Spill; Congressman Releases Documents Given to DOJ for BP Investigation

WASHINGTON (November 15, 2012) – A $4.5 billion settlement between the United States government and BP includes a guilty plea of obstruction by a BP executive for lying to Congress and manipulating documents related to the size of the spill. The BP executive charged with obstruction is David Rainey, who testified at the first closed-door briefing held by Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) on May 4, 2010. Rep. Markey, who was then the Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Energy and Environment Subcommittee, called this first meeting between Congress and BP, Halliburton and Transocean where employees of those companies disclosed information related to the possible flow rate of the Macondo well, and other details.

Rep. Markey continued his investigation into the flow rate and size of the BP oil spill, receiving many documents from BP on the matter. A timeline of Rep. Markey’s investigation is included HERE.

In response to requests from the Justice Department earlier this year for information regarding what BP told him about the size of the spill, Rep. Markey provided DOJ several hundred pages of documents that he or his Committee staff had received from BP in 2010.  He also authorized his staff to be interviewed by Justice Department and FBI agents regarding aspects of his investigation, including BP’s misrepresentations regarding the rate at which oil was flowing out of the failed well.

Those documents are available on the Natural Resources Democratic website HERE.

Below is the statement of Rep. Markey, who is now the top Democrat on the Natural Resources Committee:

“Eleven Americans died. Then BP lied to the American people. And then they tried to cover it up. BP deserves this record-breaking penalty.

“The Obama administration and the Department of Justice have held BP to the highest level of accountability that the law allows, including for their lies to Congress. Now it is up to Congress to enact laws that raise both the safety standards for offshore drilling and the liability cap for companies that still spill.

“Two years after the worst environmental disaster in America's history ended, oil is still being dredged up by storms and recently leaked from wreckage at the bottom of the Gulf. This settlement may have closed a chapter of this disaster with the government, but we still have a responsibility to monitor the lingering effects from the spill and put in place new laws that reduce the likelihood of such a catastrophe occurring ever again.”

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