Hess Corp. to pay $8.7 million for 12-barrel Breton Sound oil spill in 2005

The company agreed to pay $8.7 million for natural resource projects and reimbursement of federal and state cleanup costs in an agreement filed in federal court Friday

The Hess Corp. has agreed to pay $8.7 million to settle a federal and state lawsuit over a 2005 spill in Breton Sound of a dozen barrels of crude oil blamed for killing hundreds of then-endangered brown pelicans and other birds. In a settlement agreement filed in federal court in New Orleans on Friday (Nov. 9), the company agreed to pay most of the money to the U.S. Interior Department, which controls West Breton Island where the oil went ashore.

Part of the money also will go to repaying the costs by Interior, other federal agencies and the Louisiana Oil Spill Control Office in responding to the spill.

Immediately after the spill, Tri-State Bird Rescue & Research, a nonprofit organization, set up a “bird city” in Venice, where oiled birds were washed and allowed to recuperate for more than three months.

Bird veterinary teams from around the nation experienced in treating oiled birds also responded to the spill.

The spill was discovered in June 2005 by workers returning to the company’s Breton Sound 51 platform after evacuating in advance of Tropical Storm Arlene. The platform was about 60 miles southeast of New Orleans. Read full article.