Sometimes we all have to to own up to our mistakes and serve the time. But not the classy folks at BP! According to the NY Times, BP will challenge estimates of the oil spilled in order to reduce their fine.
As it stands now, government estimates put the amount of oil spilled at 4.9 million barrels which means that BP could face fines of up to $US21 billion, or $US4,300 per barrel, "if courts determine that it acted with gross negligence before the accident." BP is suggesting that that estimate is 20 to 50 percent too high, though they've failed to offer their own estimate.
Of course BP would challenge the estimates though: it's a shit ton of money that they have to pay up. And if we learned anything from the oil spill, it was that BP is all big business corporation: a couple million barrels less is a few billion dollars saved for them. But the problem is BP has notoriously underestimated the flow rate of their oil spill. Their early estimates had the leak at 1,000 to 5,000 barrels a day, but more detailed analysis found that it probably reached as high as 60,000 barrels a day. Quite a bit of difference.
Hopefully, the government won't bend to BP's will. [NY Times]