• Why is an NFL Team Suing BP?

Why is an NFL Team Suing BP?

Apr 28 2019 Read 588 Times

Usually, NFL teams make headlines for signing multi-million dollar contracts or winning Super Bowl championships. Though in a move that has made national headlines, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are seeking a weighty compensation package relating to BP's Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

The professional American football team is attempting to claim millions of dollars in damages for the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill, which saw more than 200 million gallons of crude oil stream into the Gulf of Mexico. It also claimed the lives of 11 people and left 17 with serious injuries, not to mention had a major impact on the natural ecosystem and killed billions of animals.

The Buccaneers aren't the only professional sports team launching a claim against BP, with ice hockey team Tampa Bay Lighting also seeking compensation. The claim was recently closed, and the team was awarded more than US$788,000.

Buccaneers request for a private tribunal rejected

While the Buccaneers lodged a request to seal the courtroom from the public Judge Gregg J. Costa rejected the call for a private tribunal. The reasons behind the claim are unknown, though thanks to the public courtroom enforced by Judge Costa, the motive and payout will ultimately be revealed.

“At the end of the day, because this court has maintained confidential treatment of its financial statements, the Buccaneers’ request for sealing the oral argument is based on nothing more than a desire to keep secret that it filed a Deepwater Horizon claim,” reads a statement issued by Costa. “The court will leave it to others to guess why the team is so concerned about public disclosure of its claim when numerous other BP claimants in the appeals inundating our court are not.”

Another blow for BP budget

For BP, the claim is yet another blow to the bank. Already, the British multinational oil and gas company has paid out huge sums to a slew of claimants, with experts estimating the costs now sit at around US$65 billion. This includes more than 400,000 cases lodged via the Court Supervised Settlement Program. A spokeswoman for the company also revealed that hundreds of outstanding claims are still waiting to be settled, which will add to the ballooning figure.

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