"A Convicted Serial Environmental Criminal"

Smudged BP Oil Sign @ Houston Street NYC on Twitpic_1275460883982

On the Daily Show last night, I learned of BP's astonishing record of malefeasance and safety corner-cutting. From ABC News:

OSHA statistics show BP ran up 760 "egregious, willful" safety violations, while Sunoco and Conoco-Phillips each had eight, Citgo had two and Exxon had one comparable citation.

BP is responsible for 97 percent of safety violations. No wonder Andrew Revkin says the announcement of a criminal investigation "felt way overdue":

Last Friday, two former special investigators from the criminal investigation division of the Environmental Protection Agency, quoted by the Web site Truthout, said that criminal, not civil, inquiries should have been the priority from day one. Here’s a vivid excerpt:

Scott West, the former special agent-in-charge at the E.P.A.’s Criminal Investigation Division, who spent more than a year probing allegations that BP committed crimes in connection with a massive oil spill on Alaska’s North Slope in 2006, said the company’s prior felony and misdemeanor convictions should have immediately “raised red flags” and resulted in a federal criminal investigation. “If the company behind this disaster was Texaco or Chevron I would have likely waited a couple of days before I started to talking to people,” West said. “And the reason for that is those corporations do not enjoy the current criminal history that BP does.”… “BP is a convicted serial environmental criminal,” West said.

Speaking of the North Slope, Palin, in response to who knows what, tweets:

C'mon., Extreme Greenies-who-lock-up-our-lands...see now why we push"drill,baby,drill"of known reserves&promising finds in safe onshore places like ANWR? Now do you get it?

More on the 2006 onshore spill here.  (Photo by Johan Lammers.)