Friday, August 29, 2008

ExxonMobil agrees to pay most of the reduced Exxon Valdez damage award - about 3 % of its most recent quarterly profits


This week ExxonMobil and plaintiffs' lawyers in the Exxon Valdez case concluded a settlement to pay out most of the $507.5 million maximum damages award set by the U.S. Supreme Court in June. August 26, 2008 AK Daily news Exxon will pay $383.4 million to be distributed to 33,000 commercial fishermen and others who sued after the Exxon Valdez tanker spilled almost 11 million gallons of oil in Prince William Sound in 1989.  Exxon continues to battle with plaintiffs over another $70 million and potential interest of $488 million on the Supreme Court judgment. The figures don't add up because ExxonMobil will reimburse itself $54 million -- the largest single payout -- under terms of a side agreement Exxon made in 1991with seven Seattle-based fish-processing companies.  The $ 383.4 million payment represents roughly 3 % of $11.7 BILLION profits ExxonMobil garnered last quarter, the largest corporate profit ever gained in history. 7/31/08 AP report on ExxonMobil 2d quarter profits  At this profit rate, ExxonMobil will pay roughly 8/10th of 1% of its annual profits.  Oh, I'm sure that ExxonMobil is quaking in their boots about ever being so negligent again. The average American family would pay a larger fine (as a percentage of their take home income or even their total income) for tossing a gum wrapper out the window of a car.  Litter fines What's the take home message of the Supreme Court....maybe litter fines are unconstitutionally excessive?  They might actually deter littering by the likes of ExxonMobil! If ExxonMobil had been fined at the rate of $1000 per cubic foot (the Washington State fine for littering more than a cubic foot of litter), ExxonMobil would have owed $ 1.47 BILLION.  Forgive me.  I'm still a bit irritated by the Supreme Court's sense of justice in the damages case.

Cases, Constitutional Law, Economics, Energy, Governance/Management, Law, North America, Sustainability, US, Water Quality | Permalink

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Had a judge seen the freezer boats plugged with dead bodies. Seen the cleanup go from shovels to spoons to limit disposal. Seen the oil now embedded in the beaches and the true horror of the drunk mans mess. Seen the despair of ruined people they would have probably still voted in Exxons favor. (The oily boid gets the worm)

Posted by: Hank Niemi | Aug 31, 2008 11:34:31 AM

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