Wednesday marked the one year anniversary of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Although BP is currently the focus of a federal criminal investigation for its part in the disaster, the Department of Defense saw fit to award Air BP, a division of BP Products North America, a $42 million contract to supply fuel to Dover Air Force Base for the next month and a half.
An investigative report from Truthout.org identified this particular deal as “an unusual and compelling urgency” contract, which means the government would be “seriously injured“and national security could be at risk unless the Defense Logistics Agency was permitted to “limit the number of sources from which it solicits bids or proposals.”
Truthout’s Jason Leopold writes that “according to government contracting regulations, ‘an unusual and compelling urgency precludes full and open competition’ and ‘delay in award of a contract would result in serious injury, financial or other, to the Government.’”
In laymens terms, this means the government just handed BP a $42 million check with almost no competing bids from other companies.
Leopold’s investigation also discovered that EPA talks about possibly debarring or limiting BP from receiving additional government contracts after the deadly Deepwater horizon explosion “went nowhere” largely because the federal government relies too heavily on BP to meet its needs.
“…ultimately what it came down to was a lack of interest in holding this company accountable,” one EPA official said.
According to USAspending.gov, which tracks government contracts, BP was awarded 52 government contracts worth $56.5 million for fiscal year 2011 to supply fuel, gas, and other petroleum products to agencies such as the Defense Department and Department of Health and Human Services. From fiscal year 2006 through 2010, BP received 707 government contracts worth nearly $7 billion.
It’s hard to wrap one’s mind around the hypocrisy and utter betrayal of the governments decision to coddle an environmental terrorist like BP. A terrorist that cost American taxpayers over $10 billion dollars while reporting millions of dollars in profit for 2010.
The government seems to think the American people are too lazy or too stupid to realize that this is a gross injustice to the people and animals whose lives were destroyed because of BP’s “lack of a safety culture.”
Once again, it’s imperitive that people rise up and demand that companies like BP, Transocean, Cameron International and Halliburton are held accountable for their actions like any other criminal.
Push aside your discouragement, and reaffirm your resolve. Sign a petition, write a letter to your congressperson, call the White House. Most importantly vote with your dollar and REFUSE to finance the greedy practices of BP or any of its other brand names.
Image Credit: Flickr - dsb nola