Good Question: Where Does The BP Settlement Money Go?

By: Jeff Herndon Email
By: Jeff Herndon Email

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

So, BP announced it is paying the government $4.5 billion to settle the huge oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

But where exactly are those $4.5 billion going?

Good question.

It's the largest total criminal resolution in the history of the United States. In addition to the criminal charges against two BP employees, multiple felony counts -- including obstruction of Congress -- BP will pay a settlement of roughly $4.5 billion to the federal government.

But where are all of those billion going? It breaks down like this:

Criminal fines absorb about $1.3 billion of the settlement. Another $2.4 billion will be paid to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The National Academy of Sciences will receive about $350 million. The Securities and Exchange Commission stands to get about $500 million.

It is not a lump sum, but rather payments over a five-year period. By the way, BP made more than $25 billion last year.

The company claims it has spent about $14 billion on oil spill response and clean-up and that it has paid out more than $9 billion in claims to businesses and individuals affected by the spill.

There are still billions of dollars in proposed settlements and fines pending against BP.

If you have a Good Question, send it to me at or find me on Twitter . I'll answer your Good Question every Thursday on KAKE News at 10

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