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 Post subject: More Outrage at Valdez
PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 8:15 am 
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Court halves Exxon spill damages

A US court has almost halved the damages oil giant Exxon Mobil must pay for a 1989 oil spill off Alaska.

The San Francisco Federal appeals court reduced the payment from $4.5bn (£2.3bn) to $2.5bn (£1.3bn), saying the previous decision had been excessive.

It is the third time damages in the case have been reduced.

The case - started in 1994 by more than 32,000 fishermen, native Alaskans and property owners - is one of the longest non-criminal ones in US history.

In the original court ruling, Exxon was ordered to pay out $5bn.

Later decisions ordered the lower Alaskan court to set a lower limit for the penalty, but refused to say how much the penalty should be cut by.

However, in the latest 2-1 judgement, Chief Judge Mary Schroeder and Judge Andrew Kleinfeld declared it was "time for this protracted litigation to end."

Compensating

Exxon was not immediately available for comment.

However, the firm has previously argued that it should have to pay no more than $25m in punitive damages in the case as it has spent $3.5bn on cleaning up the affected area and compensating victims of the spill.

David Oesting, the lawyer leading the effort against Exxon Mobil for the Alaskans affected by the spill, said he was considering whether to ask for the case to be reheard by 15 judges or whether to take it to the Supreme Court.

The Exxon Valdez supertanker spilled 11 million gallons of crude oil into Prince William Sound, polluting around 2,000km of coastline. Its captain, Joseph Hazelwood, admitted drinking vodka before boarding the vessel, but was acquitted of operating a ship while intoxicated.

The disaster is estimated to have killed 250,000 seabirds, 2,800 sea otters, 300 harbour seals, 250 bald eagles, up to 22 killer whales, and an unknown number of salmon and herring.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6204819.stm

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 3:19 pm 
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It seems that there are not many people here worried (at least to the extent to express their opinions) with the environment (or with evil politics/(in)justice)...

Zappa would have to write Outrage at Valdez II for that piece of news... ARF!

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 3:37 pm 
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I'm definitely no fan of Exxon and other oil conglomerates, but how can you really accurately assess the amount of damage caused by the environmental disaster with the Valdez? Even though it may be only half of what the Alaskan fishermen and other plaintiffs have demanded in court, 2.5 billion dollars is still an awful lot of money.

Considering that representatives of Exxon have said that any fine larger than $25 million would be excessive, they're still getting their asses kicked hard (and rightfully so), but I suppose we should just sue them 'til they go broke?

Obviously Exxon, with an annual profit of 30+ billion dollars a year, has pockets deep enough to take this all the way to the Supreme Court...

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 3:55 pm 
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Fact is that their activity harms environement in a variety of ways and thus, any figure might be small. If the money they pay goes towards environmental/social relevant activities, they should pay the previously stipulated amount. If there is no hard punishment for environmental damage, there will be no reason for corporations to avoid it.:x

Nice of you to voice your opinion, nevertheless... :)

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 4:13 pm 
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Obviously Exxon should be held accountable for all environmental damage caused by the Valdez disaster, and they definitely should be made an example of, just to ensure the tightest security measures possible in the future.

But in my opinion, this case is also a tragedy of human failure and incompetence, and no matter what security measures we might take and what fines we may set... as long as there's human activity involved or even humanly designed hardware and software at play (I'm a software engineer, and lord knows we make mistakes every once in a while... :mrgreen:), there's always a chance that human errors lead to disastrous consequences.

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Last edited by Studebaker on Mon Dec 25, 2006 4:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 4:14 pm 
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Big toys, big responsabilities :wink:

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 01, 2007 5:17 pm 
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Studebaker wrote:
Obviously Exxon, with an annual profit of 30+ billion dollars a year, has pockets deep enough to take this all the way to the Supreme Court...


They just take care of #1:

Exxon Mobil sets US profit record

Exxon Mobil, the world's largest oil company, has reported the highest-ever annual profit by a US business.


Boosted by record global energy prices in the first half of the year, its 2006 net profit totalled $39.5bn (£20bn), a 9% increase on $36.1bn in 2005.

Its 2006 revenues rose to $377.6bn, from $286bn a year earlier.

Global oil prices hit a high of $78 a barrel last summer at the time of the conflict in southern Lebanon although they have since fallen back to $58.

Fourth quarter dip

Petrol prices have also since retreated after reaching highs of $3 a gallon in the US in August.

The decline in oil and petrol prices towards the end of the 2006 meant Exxon's profits for October to December dipped 4.3%.

Its net profit for the fourth quarter fell to $10.3bn (£5.2bn) from $10.7bn for the same period in 2005.

Exxon's 2006 profits were 69% higher than those of its Anglo-Dutch rival Royal Dutch Shell, which also reported its annual results on Thursday.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6320933.stm

Meanwhile, on Wall Street . . .

Dow Jones closes at record high

The Dow Jones Industrial Average index closes at a record high after strong earnings and investor confidence that interest rates are stable.

The Dow closed 51.99 points up at 12,673.68, after earlier hitting a new intra-day record of 12,682.57.

Exxon Mobil shares rose 1.3% as annual profits hit $25.36bn (£12.94bn).

Mild consumer price rises, and the Federal Reserve's decision to keep interest rates on hold a day earlier signalled that inflation was in check.

While there have been fears in recent months about a slowdown in manufacturing as well as a shrinking housing market, Federal Reserve comments on Thursday pointed to a solid economy.

Figures showing the economy grew 3.5% in the final three months of 2006 - faster than forecast - helped to reassure investors.

Mike Binger, portfolio manager for Thrivent Financial said: "Interest rates are in check, the economy is doing well, inflation seems under control and earnings look good."

As well as Exxon, other climbers were Dupont, which added 2.06%, while Boeing rose 1.66% and Alcoa rose 1.55%

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6322795.stm

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 8:08 am 
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Exxon can appeal $2.5bn oil fine

Exxon Mobil has won the right to appeal against $2.5bn in damages relating to a 1989 Alaskan oil spill.


The US Supreme Court said it would hear the appeal against damages due to victims of the Valdez oil spill.

The case has dragged on since 1994, with US oil giant Exxon fighting to reduce the amount, which the company has called excessive.

In what was one of the biggest ever oil spills, 11 million gallons of crude were released into Alaska's wilderness.

About 1,300 miles (2,080km) of coastline was contaminated as a result of the oil spill, which occurred after the Exxon Valdez tanker crashed into a reef.

Its captain, Joseph Hazelwood, admitted drinking vodka before boarding the vessel, but was subsequently acquitted of operating a ship while intoxicated.

Exxon argues that it cannot be held responsible for the actions of Mr Hazelwood and says that the $2.5bn penalty is excessive when compared with other rulings on punitive damages.

The world's biggest listed oil firm, Exxon adds that it has already paid $3.4bn in clean-up costs, and other fines related to the oil disaster and damage to the natural environment.

Lawyers for the victims, some of whom are now dead, said that the damages award was "barely more than three weeks of Exxon's net profit".

In 2006, Exxon reported the highest ever net annual profit for a US business at $39.5bn.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7067788.stm

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 8:12 am 
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Oh, and don't forget to bomb Iran just as winter is setting in...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 8:41 am 
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^^^^ That's right, we need to secure the material for future oil spills...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2007 10:21 pm 
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I just saw on the news that they may not have to pay one dime in damages!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously! it was on the news half an hour ago!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:07 am 
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zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:40 am 
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zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


zombie is too busy worshipping his Keith Emerson Godzilla soundtrack to worry about such silly things. I bow to his genius.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 6:54 am 
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brainpang wrote:
zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


zombie is too busy worshipping his Keith Emerson Godzilla soundtrack to worry about such silly things. I bow to his genius.

Careful brainpang....just the fact that you know Keith Emerson did the music for "Godzilla: Final Wars" could ruin your reputation.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 8:14 am 
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just plain doug wrote:
brainpang wrote:
zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


zombie is too busy worshipping his Keith Emerson Godzilla soundtrack to worry about such silly things. I bow to his genius.

Careful brainpang....just the fact that you know Keith Emerson did the music for "Godzilla: Final Wars" could ruin your reputation.


he he he. It was listed on free digital cable movies and my son and I watched it on a rainy day. I got a good chuckle seeing Keith's name pop up in the opening credits. Can't say I remember any of the music.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 1:21 pm 
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zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


I am sure Frank would have thought just the same...

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 9:23 pm 
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Actually, I think he and Gail had more than a passive interest in some environmental issues, but as this is more political the zomby-man's point is duly noted... :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 6:21 am 
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One year ago, today:

Mr_Green_Genes wrote:
Studebaker wrote:
Obviously Exxon, with an annual profit of 30+ billion dollars a year, has pockets deep enough to take this all the way to the Supreme Court...


They just take care of #1:

Exxon Mobil sets US profit record

Exxon Mobil, the world's largest oil company, has reported the highest-ever annual profit by a US business.



And they won't be paying the bill...

Mr_Green_Genes wrote:
Exxon can appeal $2.5bn oil fine

Exxon Mobil has won the right to appeal against $2.5bn in damages relating to a 1989 Alaskan oil spill.


Friday, 1 February 2008, 13:36 GMT

Exxon Mobil reports record profit

The world's largest publically listed company, the oil giant Exxon Mobil, has reported $40.6bn (£20.4bn) net profits during 2007, a record for a US company.


Net profits surged to $11.66bn during the October to December quarter, up from $10.7bn a year earlier.

The profits were buoyed by soaring global oil prices which briefly hit $100 a barrel in December.

On Thursday, Anglo-Dutch rival Royal Dutch Shell saw $27.56bn annual profits, a record for a UK-listed firm.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7222414.stm

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 Post subject: barf!
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 8:55 am 
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Makes your stomach turn don't it?

Unfortunately, this is neither a legend, myth nor fantasy, it's a FACT!
Until the US learns to develop a strong "green" economy they'll continue to fuck everyone, except their stockholders, every way they can! :evil: :(


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:19 pm 
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One more time for the world...

Justices Cut Damages Award in Exxon Valdez Spill

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Wednesday reduced what had once been a $5 billion punitive damages award against ExxonMobil to about $500 million. The ruling essentially concluded a legal saga that started when the Exxon Valdez, a supertanker, struck a reef and spilled 11 million gallons of crude oil into the Prince William Sound in Alaska in 1989.


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The decision may have broad implications for limits on punitive damages generally. Punitive damages, which are meant to punish and deter, are imposed on top of compensatory damages, which aim to make plaintiffs whole.

Justice David H. Souter, writing for the majority in the 5-to-3 decision, said a ratio between the two sorts of damages of no more than one-to-one was generally appropriate, at least in maritime cases. Since Exxon has paid about $507 million to compensate more than 32,000 Native Alaskans, landowners and commercial fishermen, Justice Souter said, it should have to pay no more than that amount in punitive damages.

That works out to $15,000 for each plaintiff for compensation and $15,000 more as punitive damages.

Justice John Paul Stevens, in a dissent, said he would have upheld the original jury award, which the federal appeals court in California had reduced to $2.5 billion.

“In light of Exxon’s decision to permit a lapsed alcoholic to command a supertanker carrying tens of millions of gallons of crude oil though the treacherous waters of Prince William Sound, thereby endangering all of the individuals who depended upon the sound for their livelihoods,” Justice Stevens wrote, “the jury could easily have given expression to its moral condemnation of Exxon’s conduct in the form of this award.”

The Exxon Valdez spill was the worst in American history, damaging 1,300 miles of shoreline, disrupting the lives and livelihoods of people in the region and killing hundreds of thousands of birds and marine animals. It occurred after the ship’s captain, Joseph J. Hazelwood, left the bridge at a crucial moment. Mr. Hazelwood, an alcoholic, had downed five double vodkas on the night of the disaster, according to witnesses.

Exxon paid more than $3.4 billion in fines, cleanup expenses and other costs. The spill still affects Alaska’s fisheries today.

The question remaining after Wednesday’s decision is whether the one-to-one ratio will apply outside of maritime cases. In the Exxon case, the court was acting as a state appellate court typically might, assessing the reasonableness of the punitive award under the common law rather than asking whether it violated constitutional due process protections.

It is not clear, then, what effect the decision will have in cases presenting the constitutional question. In 2003, in State Farm v. Campbell, the court ruled that a single-digit ratio (that is, no more than 9:1) was appropriate as a matter of due process in all but the most exceptional cases. In cases where compensatory damages are substantial, the State Farm court went on, “a lesser ratio, perhaps only equal to compensatory damages” might be warranted.

Justice Souter’s last footnote in Wednesday’s decision, Exxon Shipping v. Baker, No. 07-219, underscored the suggestion in State Farm that in cases with substantial compensatory awards “the constitutional outer limit may well be 1:1.”

The Exxon decision may also be influential in cases where state court judges are making their own common-law assessments of reasonableness. While the Supreme Court’s reasoning in a federal maritime case is not binding on them, at least some state judges will find it instructive and persuasive.

Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. owns Exxon stock and did not participate in the case. As a consequence, the court split 4 to 4 on a separate question in the case, that of whether Exxon may be held accountable for Mr. Hazelwood’s recklessness. The effect of the even split was to leave intact the ruling of the lower court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which said Exxon may be held responsible.

The remaining members of the court were unanimous in rejecting a third argument from Exxon, that the Clean Water Act’s penalties pre-empted the punitive award.

Three justices issued their own dissents from the majority’s ruling reducing the punitive award.

Justice John Paul Stevens wrote that imposing a broadly applicable rule is a job for Congress, not the courts. He acknowledged the problem of “large outlier awards” but said courts can address those case by case.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, also dissenting, asked a series of pointed questions. For instance: “What ratio will the court set for defendants who acted maliciously or in pursuit of financial gain?” And: “On the next opportunity, will the court rule, definitively, that 1:1 is the ceiling due process requires in all of the states, and for all federal claims?”

In his dissent, Justice Stephen G. Breyer wrote that Exxon’s conduct warranted “an exception from strict application of the majority’s numerical rule.”

Jeffrey L. Fisher, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, said there was “a great deal of sadness” among his clients. “What is painful,” Mr. Fisher said, “is that there seems to have been some disagreement between the dissenters and the majority on how reprehensible Exxon’s conduct was.”

In a statement, Rex W. Tillerson, the chairman and chief executive of ExxonMobil, said “The company cleaned up the spill and voluntarily compensated more than 11,000 Alaskans and businesses. The clean-up was declared complete by the State of Alaska and the United States Coast Guard in 1992.”

Business groups welcomed the majority’s ruling.

“The decision could have an effect far beyond federal maritime law,” Robin Conrad, executive vice president of the National Chamber Litigation Center, said in a statement. “Limiting punitive damages to no more than the amount of a compensatory award will go a long way” toward restraining unpredictable punitive damages.

Justice Souter was a little self-conscious in presenting a numerical ratio as a rule of law.

“Some will murmur that this smacks too much of policy and too little of principle,” he wrote. But, he added, “history certainly is no support for the notion that judges cannot use numbers.”

SOURCE

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:28 pm 
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zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


That reminds me I was supposed to bring some batteries for my co-workers vibrator. She has a birthday on Friday.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 4:49 pm 
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Huck_Phlem wrote:
zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

That reminds me I was supposed to bring some batteries for my co-workers vibrator. She has a birthday on Friday.

If you wear 'em out, then you oughta replace 'em; it's only fair. 8)

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 6:33 pm 
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jimmie d killed the forum wrote:
Huck_Phlem wrote:
zombie1210 wrote:
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

That reminds me I was supposed to bring some batteries for my co-workers vibrator. She has a birthday on Friday.

If you wear 'em out, then you oughta replace 'em; it's only fair. 8)

I had a girlfriend, in highschool, who had one of those. She got rid of it because it made her teeth loose.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2008 8:54 am 
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2008 4:41 pm 
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Exxon posts record $11.68 billion profit

World's largest publicly traded oil firm makes $1,485.55 a second in the quarter, but misses forecasts.

http://money.cnn.com/2008/07/31/news/companies/exxon_profits/?postversion=2008073110

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