Reviewing his first full year as group chief executive, Bob Dudley sets out the actions being taken to make BP a stronger, safer company
People have high expectations of BP – from our shareholders, employees and partners to our customers and the communities in which we operate. Expectations have been raised even higher since the Deepwater Horizon accident and oil spill. During 2011, I visited 16 countries in addition to the UK, and had many frank discussions about BP’s role and responsibilities. It is clear that what we do matters to people, and that open communication is valued – and expected.
The employees of BP are working with great determination to make BP a stronger, safer company. We have set three clear priorities – safety must be enhanced, trust earned back, and greater value delivered to our shareholders. We know we don’t have all the answers, but we will keep learning and striving for continuous improvement. We will do our best to keep you informed.
This Sustainability Review is part of our engagement with the wider world. Inside, we report on the measures we are taking with the aim of meeting our responsibilities.
Meeting our responsibilities in the Gulf of Mexico
BP has been working closely with local communities and government agencies on the restoration of the Gulf Coast. During the year, we continued to meet our commitments to those affected. All legitimate claims for compensation have been, and will continue to be met. By the end of 2011, $7.8 billion had been paid for claims, advances and other payments. On 3 March 2012 we announced a settlement with the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee, subject to final written agreement and court approvals, to resolve the substantial majority of legitimate economic loss and medical claims made by individual and business plaintiffs in the Multi-District Litigation proceedings pending in New Orleans (MDL 2179). The legal process continues with other parties.
Throughout the year, BP helped promote two industries vital to the success of the region – tourism and seafood. I am heartened that visitors have returned, with some areas reporting record seasons. And it was a great moment for the region when the final area of previously-closed federal fishing waters in the Gulf was reopened for commercial fishing in April 2011.
As part of our commitment to environmental restoration, BP is providing up to $1 billion for early restoration projects designed to accelerate efforts to restore natural resources that were injured as a result of the accident.
We are also contributing $500 million over 10 years to support independent research to create a better understanding of the Gulf ecosystem and help the industry and others prevent and mitigate the potential impacts of oil spills in the region and elsewhere. We have co-operated with all external investigations into the accident and spill. The official reports to date have supported the core conclusion of our own investigation. Namely, th