The logos of Transocean and BP are seen on the derrick of the Development Driller III, which is drilling a relief well at the site of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
In the messy wake of the BP Gulf of Mexico disaster, three giants of the oil industry—the aforementioned British Petroleum, perennial favorite Halliburton and Transocean—were butting heads and looking to stick each other with the bulk of the blame for the spill as they faced the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on Tuesday. —KA
With at least 4m gallons of oil now fouling the Gulf, the executives of BP America, which owned the well, Transocean, which owned the sunken Deepwater Horizon rig, and Halliburton, which cemented the well, were involved in a desperate attempt to avoid taking direct blame for the 20 April incident.
As the Energy and Natural Resources committee hearing got underway, Senate staffers joked it could be subtitled Scenes from an Execution, with a grilling due from the senators. But some of the worst damage may well have been done by executives themselves, as the three companies all tried to shift the responsibility.