BP vows to pay 'necessary and appropriate' oil costs
Energy giant BP vowed Monday to pay "all necessary and appropriate clean-up costs" from the US oil pollution disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.
The comments came after the US administration demanded that BP do more to tackle a vast oil slick that is threatening swathes of Louisiana's coast, placing responsibility for the clean-up squarely at the firm's door.
"BP takes responsibility for responding to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. We will clean it up," it said, vowing to consider all compensation claims "promptly" and pay them quickly if justified.
Oil from beneath a BP-leased rig which exploded and overturned in the Gulf of Mexico has formed a huge slick now coming ashore on the US Gulf coast. The cost has been estimated at several billion dollars.
"BP has established a robust process to manage claims resulting from the Deepwater Horizon incident," said the statement posted on a site devoted to the official response to the disaster.
"BP will pay all necessary and appropriate clean-up costs," it said, adding that the company was "committed to pay legitimate and objectively verifiable claims for other loss and damage caused by the spill.
"This may include claims for assessment, mitigation and clean-up of spilled oil, real and property damage caused by the oil, personal injury caused by the spill, commercial losses including loss of earnings/profit and other losses as contemplated by applicable laws and regulations."
A 24-hour, seven-days-a-week claims hotline has been set up with a toll-free number, it said.
"Each claim will be assigned to an adjuster and the claim will be promptly investigated and evaluated. Larger and more complex claims may require additional investigation and documentation prior to evaluation and resolution.
"BP will pay resolved claims promptly," the company added.
Oil has been spewing into the Gulf of Mexico since a deepwater oil rig operated by BP exploded and sank last week killing 11 men.
The accident is a hammer blow to the company's greener image, which was already damaged in the United States by a 2005 refinery explosion that killed more than a dozen people.
BP leased the rig from Houston-based contractor Transocean. A number of lawsuits have already been filed against BP and Transocean in connection to the oil spill or the explosion aboard the drilling rig.
© 2010 AFP