For Immediate Release: November 4, 2010
ELI Launches Deepwater Horizon Litigation Database: 255 Cases Filed in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas
(Washington, DC) — The Environmental Law Institute has launched a new online tool to help users access information related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill (DHOS), available at http://www.eli.org/Program_Areas/deepwater_horizon.cfm. Central to the site is a Litigation Database, which tracks the ongoing legal action triggered by the spill. The database allows users to see the types of cases filed, when and where the parties filed, and what cases have been closed or consolidated. Users may also investigate spill-related cases according to a variety of search fields. In addition to the Litigation Database, links provide basic information about the oil spill, its effects, and efforts to help the region recover.
The launch of ELI’s Deepwater Horizon Litigation Database coincides with the November 2010 issue of News & Analysis, Environmental Law Reporter’s (ELR) monthly journal, which is devoted to lessons from the Deepwater Horizon disaster. This special issue is a joint effort by the editors of ELR, National Wetlands Newsletter, and The Environmental Forum to give a broad perspective—scientific, economic, and legal—into the causes of this tragedy and the insights gained in its wake.
The articles were authored by a number of experts in the field, among them: Oliver A. Houck of Tulane University examines the legal safeguards that were in place preceding DHOS and how, despite these measures, the disaster not only occurred but escalated to catastrophic proportions; Zygmunt J.B. Plater, chair of the legal commission that examined Alaska’s Exxon Valdez spill of two decades ago, draws parallels between systemic failures that occurred both before and during the Alaska spill and DHOS; and Jonathan Simon and Jennifer Owen of the law firm of Van Ness Feldman address the policy and regulatory implications of the spill for offshore oil and gas leasing and other forms of offshore energy development.
The special issue also includes insightful suggestions for reform, such as examining how training tools for aviation crews can be used to better train oil rig crews. The entire special issue can be accessed at http://www.eli.org/Program_Areas/deepwater_horizon_elr_issue.cfm.
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