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house Bill H.R. 1684

Do Oil Companies Responsible for Spills That Damage U.S. Waters Need to be Held Liable?

Argument in favor

Owners and operators of companies responsible for oil spills should be liable for the damages they cause in U.S. territory even if the spill originates in foreign waters. This is a commonsense fix that keeps taxpayers off the hook for recovery costs.

Nancy's Opinion
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04/25/2016
It's an issue of corporate responsibility. Corporations need to be held accountable. Federal provided protection money increases the tax costs to every taxpayer. Federal provided protection costs also allow corporate operations to be federally subsidized, essentially creating corporate welfare when they DO have the funds to cover these costs themselves. Corporations need to be held economically (and ethically) responsible for their actions. This would be a step in the right direction.
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Tafinzer's Opinion
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01/25/2017
Always!!! Private industry with huge profits. The infrastructure is their responsibility. Any failures it it is their responsibility.
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Ralph's Opinion
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04/27/2016
We can't let massive corporations damage the organic inheritance that renders our existence possible damage our wildlife and ecosystem for a profit. This type of behavior needs to be scrutinized and disciplined.
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Argument opposed

Current law offers up to $1 billion in financial protection for states, communities, and businesses that might be negatively impacted by an oil spill that occurs in foreign territory but affects U.S. waters. That’s enough cover, so this bill isn’t necessary.

T's Opinion
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04/26/2016
Extending our rights beyond our exclusive economic zone is a slippery slope. If we encourage that sort of principle, what is to prevent courts in other countries (whether legitimate or rigged) from holding US companies, operating entirely in the US, financially liable for the occasional drought or flood under the logic that they contributed to global warming?
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wsdraperv's Opinion
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04/26/2016
We way overcharge oil companies for the cost of cleanup, the vast majority of which would be done by nature. Oil is escaping all the time from natural sources. It's normal.
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Adam's Opinion
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04/25/2016
They made the mess, they must be the ones responsible for cleaning it up, in it's entirety.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Environment and Public Works
  • The house Passed April 26th, 2016
    Passed by Voice Vote
      house Committees
      Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
      Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation
      Water Resources and Environment
    IntroducedMarch 26th, 2015

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    It's an issue of corporate responsibility. Corporations need to be held accountable. Federal provided protection money increases the tax costs to every taxpayer. Federal provided protection costs also allow corporate operations to be federally subsidized, essentially creating corporate welfare when they DO have the funds to cover these costs themselves. Corporations need to be held economically (and ethically) responsible for their actions. This would be a step in the right direction.
    Like (45)
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    Always!!! Private industry with huge profits. The infrastructure is their responsibility. Any failures it it is their responsibility.
    Like (32)
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    We can't let massive corporations damage the organic inheritance that renders our existence possible damage our wildlife and ecosystem for a profit. This type of behavior needs to be scrutinized and disciplined.
    Like (22)
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    I could say this bill addresses corporate responsibility when society is adversely affected by a companies activities. I could say this is a matter of having money transferred to the federal level rather than the state level when a community is damaged by oil spills from foreign regions. I could say anyone in opposition to this bill is monetarily invested whether he be a petroleum engineer or an Oil-elected congressman. But more important than all three of those facts is this: (to anyone over the age of about 30 reading this, you better take note) the millennial generation is very upset with you. Bills like these are direct reflections of the distaste for older generations' damaging activities left for following generations to deal with the repercussions of. That our energy infrastructure destroys the planet with little regard to care for our home. We are tired of hearing that fossil fuel carbon-consumption is rapidly altering the chemical constituency to the atmosphere. We are tired of hearing oil spills near and far are decimating the fisheries which we not only need but respect. Anyone who fights this bill is not just fighting treehuggers and young rebellious kids, but basically every human being to exist on earth for all of time following the generation of fossil fools.
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    Accountability. This is that thing we are all held to, although more and more it seems that when called upon, fewer people seem to understand the concept of what this is. I have been in numerous leadership positions throughout my life, both in the private sector and in the military. On both accounts, when someone under my charge made an error in judgement, or a mistake in execution, I was called in to explain what had happened. While not every time, there was the occasion when I had to take full responsibility for what happened. Maybe I didn't provide clear enough direction for the task at hand, or maybe the situation changed and I didn't relay the correct information. Either way, I did the right thing. I stood there and I took full accountability of what happened. I think if more people were held to this standard, the world and the people in it would be better for it.
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    I live in New Orleans. I shouldn't have to explain why big oil needs to be held accountable. Repeated spills with minimum accountability. The gulf is turning into a dead zone and how is this affecting the health of the people who are eating seafood from the gulf?
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    If you are risking other things that do not pertain to you because of something you have caused, you should be held reliable
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    Yes
    Like (11)
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    Why wouldn't they be held liable?
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    Yes. This is not about being anti-oil, it's about being responsible.
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    Yes! Duh!
    Like (9)
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    Absolutely! They did it! They clean it!
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    The US Government's first and foremost job is to protect property rights. If someone's water is damaged, then reparations need to be enforced no matter the cost. This is how a civil society operates.
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    However the question is somewhat misleading as this is simply a bill to amend the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, inserting language about foreign facilities. Apparently, the law needed fixing. As to the broader question presented, if you want to drill, fine, but you must then pay if you spill.
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    Another question answered by kindergarten teachers everywhere, "pick up after yourself".
    Like (7)
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    A implementation that will penalize dodging oil corporations from dodging responsibility and influence as well. Oil companies as proposing actions that may seem as a beacon of light for the American publics best interest although in factuality on the internal aspect of it these oil companies are mainly in for the "innovative action" for their personal profit and authority. Now listen, any entrepreneur, employee, or successful business magnate would for a majority be in an occupation that readily satisfies their finical advancements. It's the philosophy of the American Dream! To migrate to the Americas or if you are born as a natural citizen to establish a unique authentic business as an entrepreneur to promote innovation and make a positive difference/contribution to this society but YOU GET A LITTLE GREEDY. Which in some aspects is fair for your own advancement and needs, so I greatly respect that. However, oil companies that are reliable for harsh environmental devastations on our waters and soil due to the contingency of incompetence then most certainly consequences need to occur if necessary and funding by the particular corporation to swiftly alleviate the circumstances as well. It's imperative that the private sector and not frequently the federal legislators take part into promote energy renewable resources for the sake of increasing environmental productivity. The fundamentals of this proposal are absolutely vehemently justified to be implemented, period. It's significance of justifications originates as what I have stated previously about what occurs internally (bureaucracies). Evidently whatever share you wish to invest in is expediently influenced by bureaucracies. Incorporating oil. Oil companies may rely on the support and affiliations with the American people but also they desperately rely on widespread bureaucrats to increase their asset status and keep themselves in power by implementing actions that jeopardize the not only the abroad environment and surrounding geographies but additionally some implementations by oil companies threaten and demonize the wild life! Shockingly hindering these species ability to live healthy by demolishing heir ecosystems and habitats that act as necessities as well. The contamination of our urgent waters, wild life ecosystems and habitats, rural and urban settlements/cities, and the destruction of our humanities crucial environment overall under the behalf of an individual corrupted bureaucratic industry in any patriots book of ideological options of the fossil fuel industry and urbanization should be MOST CERTAINLY HOLD ACCOUNTABLE FOR CHNAGE, AND CONSEQUENTIAL FUNDING FOR ALLEVIATIONS OF OUR ENVIRONMENT. To reiterate, it behooves federal agencies to take necessary enforcement to notify oil industries that they will indeed by held accountable if further damage is done to our sensitive environment. Thank you for your time.
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    Of course! In what world would they not be liable?
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    I think that if a single citizen who starts a forest fire has to pay restitution to the corresponding state in which the fire has done damage is liable than the corporation responsible for affecting the natural world we all share should be required to do the same. Also, a citizen really doesn't have the means to pay back such an expense. Companies though, are better equipped. I believe they call that personal responsibility.
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    There's absolutely no reason for anyone to vote no to this. It's common sense.
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    Yes YES YES This should be retro as well.
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