A US federal judge has approved a settlement with the oil company BP in relation to the Gulf oil disaster that occurred in 2010. Under the new settlement the company will have to pay $20.8 billion USD, the majority of which will go to 5 US states along the Gulf of Mexico.
While the company has already paid nearly $28 billion USD on clean up, $5.5 billion of the settlement will paid as penalties that stem from the Clean Water Act. The remaining settlement will cover damages in Alabama, Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi and Florida as well as 400 local governments.
Over 87 days the spill released roughly 200 million gallons of oil and was the largest oil spill in US history. 11 people were killed and 17 injured in the initial blast and at least 8,000 animals have been confirmed killed by the subsequent pollution.
Roughly 1770 km of coastline were polluted by the spill and a third of the Gulf waters were closed to fishing because of a contamination fear. The spill left as many as 12,000 people temporarily unemployed and devastated local tourism economies.