How safe are energy companies? And how well prepared are they in case of an emergency?
These questions will take centre stage again today as BP’s outgoing chief executive Tony Hayward appears in front of the UK’s energy select committee.
In the months after the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico, the US regulatory agency overseeing the offshore industry was severely criticised for its lax inspection regime. Several serious failures on the Deepwater Horizon were found after the explosion, including dead batteries and insufficiently strong devices that could have shut off oil flow in case of an explosion.
What can we expect from Tony Hayward’s testimony before the UK parliament’s energy select committee at 3pm today?
The first question he will be asked relates to the FT’s revelations this morning that the company has been cited on several occasions for failing to comply with safety regulations in the North Sea. Tim Yeo MP, kicking off the questioning in his role as committee chairman, will ask Hayward the following:
When you took over as BP CEO two years ago you promised to make safety your top priotity. Why then has the company not only gone through the Deepwater Horizon spill, but faced multiple safety problems on its North Sea rigs?
Elsewhere this Wednesday:
- Oil industry goes after Schwarzenegger
- The problem with Chinese clean air subsidies
- Big birthdays for Opec and Clean Air Act
- Republican ‘climate zombies’ could claim the Senate