By Andrew Restuccia - 05/23/12 07:56 PM EDT
“This settlement secures a significant penalty, requires state-of-the-art controls, and is a fair and just resolution that will address BP’s violations. We will continue to hold BP accountable and ensure that it complies with the nation’s environmental laws.”
Environmental groups — including the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Sierra Club — joined in the settlement. The groups had challenged the validity of air pollution permits granted to BP by the state of Indiana in 2008 for an expansion of the Whiting refinery.
The groups — which signed the settlement along with BP and state and federal officials — praised the agreement.
“The permit fight was painted as a threat to the local economy; nothing could be further from the truth,” Steve Francis, chairman of the Hoosier Chapter Sierra Club, said in a statement. “This agreement forces the project to integrate more pollution control equipment. That means lessened health impacts, respiratory problems and more construction jobs. This has been a job generator; not a job killer.”