Oil Spill Disaster–BP Muzzling Scientist?

Chairmen Waxman and Markey Question BP on Scientific Suppression

The Committee on Energy and Commerce seems to be just as concerned as we are regarding the suppression of scientific research from experts hired by BP. Last Thursday, July 29, a letter was sent to BP requesting their appearance on Aug. 6 to address the matter. From the Committee’s page:

Following recent reports indicating that BP has hired academic experts to study the oil spill and imposed confidentiality agreements on the independent scientists, Reps. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA) and Edward J. Markey (D-MA) requested full disclosure of the contracts today from BP.

“Mitigating the long term impact of the oil spill will require an open exchange of scientific data and analysis,” write Reps. Waxman and Markey to BP America CEO Lamar McKay.  “Any effort to muzzle scientists or shield their findings under doctrines of legal privileges could seriously impede the recovery.”

The  two congressmen ask BP to brief the Committee on Energy and Commerce by August 6, 2010, on the matter, and provide “copies of all contracts that BP has executed with any third party consultant, scientist, or academic, from the period April 20, 2010, to the present, relating to assessing the environmental and health impacts of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill or restoration efforts in the Gulf of Mexico.”


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