Exxon ordered to pay $500 million in interest on Valdez

If only the environment had pockets as deep as Big Oil to drag out lawsuits over twenty years. What other industry could drag out their responsibility for so long? The good news is that it appears to be coming to an end, unless Exxon appeals again. I made it a point to avoid Exxon for a few decades but I also realize that the others in this industry are as sleazy and despicable but in other ways. You have to wonder how the top executives of these companies are held in such high regard when you look at how they interact with the world around them. Maybe the problem is that they fit nicely into polite society where they live but their businesses are more questionable in distant locations.

Either way, it sickens me to think how much control they maintain over governments around the world. In the US you only have look at the GOP’s latest weekly address to see who owns that party. It’s almost the same pitch they delivered only a few weeks ago when they fully embraced the Big Oil vision of our energy future, that’s really the past.

Exxon Mobil Corp. was ordered Monday to pay about $500 million in interest on punitive damages for the Exxon Valdez oil spill off Alaska, nearly doubling the payout to Alaska Natives, fishermen, business owners and others harmed by the 1989 disaster.

The ruling was issued by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

In June 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court set punitive damages at $507.5 million. But two months later, the high court declined to decide whether Exxon Mobil must pay interest on the punitive damages awarded in the nation’s worst oil spill and instead sent it back to the appeals court.

Monday’s decision would double the average payout of about $15,000 for the nearly 33,000 claimants.


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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