BP gets what BP wants
Up until three months ago, when she retired, Jeanne Pascal was an attorney at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Her beat: debarment of BP.
For years, she worked on the BP case.
After all BP’s rap sheet was long and nasty – three convictions, an $84 million OSHA fine, and a deferred prosecution agreement.
Last year, Pascal was inclined to debar BP – strip it of its government contracts – because of its repeat violations.
But the Pentagon intervened… So, Pascal shifted to Plan B.
She was willing to enter into a compliance agreement – so that the government could audit BP’s operation to ensure that what happened on the North Slope – spills, slipshod safety – would be corrected.
She had cut a similar five year compliance agreement with BP after it was convicted of polluting on Endicott Island on the North Slope.
But that ended in 2005.
And now BP was in trouble again.
And Pascal offered BP another compliance agreement.
One problem – BP wanted no part of Pascal’s conditions….
In 2003, BP sought to end the first five year compliance agreement – which Pascal negotiated with BP outside counsel Carol Dinkins, a partner at Vinson & Elkins – end it early – at three to five years instead of five.
When BP workers on the North Slope caught wind that BP was in negotiations to end it early, they complained to Pascal and to BP’s probation officer – Mary Frances Barnes.
“Employees who came to me or to Stanley Sporkin with health safety and environmental complaints found themselves retaliated against,” Pascal said.
Posted by James on Saturday, June 19, 2010