BP Backs Down: Chalk Up a Victory To Local Action

Posted by: Heather Green on August 24, 2007

The Chicago Tribune reports that BP, under attack for proposing a massive increase in pollution as part of an oil refinery expansion on the banks of Lake Michigan, has backed down. It’s become a mini cause celeb online, pitting BPs marketing image against its everyday actions.

Local groups, joined by some local politicians and even Eddie Vedder or Pearl Jam, didn't buy BP's argument that an increase in dumping ammonium and sludge into the lake was necessary.

"When BP secured its new water permit, federal and state regulators agreed there was not anything the company could do to keep more pollution out of Lake Michigan. Based largely on what BP told them, regulators concluded there is not enough room at the 1,400-acre refinery for the necessary equipment, according to public documents.

"Few complained about the permit while it was under consideration earlier this year, something critics said could be attributed to paltry outreach by BP and Indiana regulators. But following a Tribune story about the project in mid-July, opponents gathered more than 100,000 petition signatures, and a bipartisan group of politicians and celebrities urged BP to back off."

Reader Comments

Brian

August 25, 2007 5:07 AM

It's about time people started standing up and saying NO to the corporate world. The planet we live on is more important than money. If we don't keep it in good condition then how are we supposed to survive.

Chicagoist

August 25, 2007 6:45 PM

BP's announcement came just an hour before U.S. Rep. Rahm Emanuel, (D-Chicago) was going to announce a public pressure campaign against BP's top 20 investors.

Further adding to the intrigue was a study "made available to" Crain’s Chicago Business suggesting that BP was costing itself a great deal of good public image when other anti-pollution options were readily accessible at relatively little cost. BP America Chairman and President Bob Malone said "we're not aware of any technology that will get us to those limits but we'll work to develop a project that allows us to do so." According to the Tetra Tech study reviewed by Crain's, however, several types of anti-pollution devices have been employed in other facilities would remove ammonia and suspended solids from waste water "estimated to cost less than $30 (million) to $40 million.”

Source: Chicagoist Blog

Chicagoist

August 26, 2007 11:45 AM

BP's announcement came just an hour before U.S. Rep. Rahm Emanuel, (D-Chicago) was going to announce a public pressure campaign against BP's top 20 investors.

Further adding to the intrigue was a study "made available to" Crain’s Chicago Business suggesting that BP was costing itself a great deal of good public image when other anti-pollution options were readily accessible at relatively little cost. BP America Chairman and President Bob Malone said "we're not aware of any technology that will get us to those limits but we'll work to develop a project that allows us to do so." According to the Tetra Tech study reviewed by Crain's, however, several types of anti-pollution devices have been employed in other facilities would remove ammonia and suspended solids from waste water "estimated to cost less than $30 (million) to $40 million.”

http://chicagoist.com/2007/08/24/bp_backs_down.php

Nate

August 26, 2007 7:18 PM

BP needs better management and be more considerate for its people.

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BusinessWeek correspondents John Carey and Mark Scott, cover the green scene, keeping on top of the business aspects of energy, the environment and climate change, as well as the technologies, policies, markets and people that are shaping how the earth's resources will be used in the century ahead.

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