BP-Obama Meeting: $20B Escrow ‘Not a Cap,’ $100M for Jobless Oil Workers

June 16, 2010

(ChattahBox)—President Obama just exited the White House pow wow with BP executives with some good news. As expected, Obama said that BP agreed to set aside $20 billion for an independently administered escrow fund to pay Gulf disaster claims. And more importantly, Obama made clear that the $20 billion amount “was not a cap.” And surprisingly, BP agreed to also set aside $100 million to compensate unemployed oil workers, unable to work due to the federal government’s moratorium on offshore oil drilling.

At the begining of his remarks, Obama noted that the meeting was “constructive” and that the discussions centered on the containment of the gushing oil and payment of claims.

Obama, said that BP’s plan to capture up to 90 percent of the oil during the days and weeks ahead, was “not good enough.” He added that today’s discussion was “essential” to begin the process of ensuring that the Gulf region would be made whole again.

And the President noted that “BP is a strong and viable company” and that it’s in the best interest of the United States that the company remain strong.

Obama pledged to “fight each and every day” for the people of the Gulf region. And the President, said that he had a “private conversation” with BP’s chairman of the board Carl-Henric Svanberg, to impress upon him, the desperation that many unemployed fishermen feel, faced with the extinction of their livelihood and way of life.

Today’s progress, should help to quite some of the criticism President Obama has received over his supposedly unengaged response to the Gulf oil calamity.

Photo Source: White House Flickr


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