Begich Comments on BP’s Pledge to Compensation Fund
U.S. Sen. Mark Begich today released the following statement after BP announced it will set up a fund worth about $20 billion over the next four years to compensate residents and businesses affected by the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster:
"I am pleased to see BP take the step of committing to a compensation fund for victims of the Gulf of Mexico disaster. It's an idea I have been supporting for the past several weeks to make sure those impacted by the oil spill will not have to suffer the two decades of delay thousands of Alaskans experienced after the Exxon Valdez spill.
"Americans damaged by this oil spill must be compensated in a timely way and setting up this escrow account is the best way to make sure that occurs. At the same time, I will continue to push my legislation, The Guaranteed Oil Spill Compensation Act of 2010, requiring any oil company who wants to develop federal oil and gas leases - present and future - to set up an escrow account in the case of a spill. I believe we need that legislative hammer to protect Americans today and into the future. Putting it into law will ensure the policy cannot be changed by a future administration.
"As we all continue to watch the disaster unfold in the Gulf, and wait for the oil to be stopped, today's news is welcome. BP needs to provide Americans the confidence it is doing everything it can to make those affected by this tragedy whole."