The Latest: States, environmentalists weighing in on BP pact

AP News
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Posted: Apr 04, 2016 7:02 PM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Latest on a $20 billion settlement in the 2010 BP oil spill (all times local):

5:30 p.m.

Environmental groups and officials in the Gulf of Mexico states are weighing in on a federal court's approval of the $20 billion settlement that was announced last year in the 2010 BP oil spill.

The settlement approved Monday resolves years of litigation over the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

In Louisiana, where delicate coastal marshes were damaged by the oil, Gov. John Bel Edwards decision clears the way for the state to receive critical coastal restoration funding. Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange, who acted as a coordinating lawyer for the five Gulf states, also was among those touting the settlement.

Overall response to the settlement has been largely positive although there remain some complaints from environmentalists that some of the costs will be tax-deductible for BP.

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12:40 p.m.

A federal judge in New Orleans has granted final approval to an estimated $20 billion settlement, resolving years of litigation over the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier's (BAHR'-bih-ayez) final order on the settlement was released Monday.

The settlement, first announced in July, includes $5.5 billion in civil Clean Water Act penalties and billions more to cover environmental damage and other claims by the five Gulf states and local governments. The money is to be paid out over a 16-year period.

Barbier had set the stage for the settlement with an earlier ruling that BP had been "grossly negligent" in the offshore rig explosion that killed 11 workers and caused a 134- million-gallon spill.