May 21, 2010: Markey Seeks Fund for Independent Scientists Researching BP Oil Spill

Chairman Says BP, Halliburton, Transocean Should Establish Oil Spill “SURF”-- Surface and Underwater Research Fund; Would Help End Specter of Conflict of Interest

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 21, 2010) - Today, Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass) sent a letter to the companies responsible for the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico urging the creation of an independent fund for outside scientists and researchers. This fund would help independent, objective scientists develop solutions to halt the flow of oil, monitor the spill and assess the ecological impacts on the Gulf.
We need to have all of our best minds on board and all hands on deck to confront this ongoing environmental catastrophe,” writes Rep. Markey in a letter to the heads of BP, Halliburton and Transocean. “Allowing independent scientists to sample our oceans and provide their own independent tests -- using their own laboratories -- will be critical in generating reliable and unbiased information.

The letter was sent to BP America CEO Lamar McKay, Transocean CEO Steve Newman, and Halliburton CEO David Lesar. To view a copy of the letter, please CLICK HERE .

Rep. Markey announced the fund at a briefing he held today with top ocean and toxic scientists. The scientists noted how much was still unknown about the spill, and how additional capacity to conduct research could greatly aid their ability to assess the spill.

“Your companies bear complete responsibility for this disaster and have a duty to assist with the investigation of the causes of the spill, to implement solutions that halt the flow of oil, to monitor the spill’s location and trajectory, and to assess ecological impacts on the human, marine, and coastal populations of the oil and the oil/dispersant mixes being released,” wrote Rep. Markey to BP, Halliburton and Transocean.

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