MMS is an Oil Environmental Mess

Ideas and Issues

ba_oilspill09_0161_macNew Orleans We had hardly landed in New Orleans before we wanted to know, “What was the real update on the British Petroleum oil disaster on the Louisiana and Gulf Coast?” Thirty days on and it was a mess and getting messier.

Nothing seemed to more epitomize this oily environmental disaster than the leaked copies of the report of the Inspector General about the situation at the Minerals Management Service (MMS) which was supposed to provide the oversight to the industry. To describe MMS as being in bed with the industry is to really put it too mildly!

The litany of abuses is incredible:

  • An MMS employee performed 4 inspections on platforms while negotiating for a job with the company being inspected.

  • An MMS employee was using crystal meth, while doing an inspection.

  • MMS employees seem to have routinely accepted gifts from oil companies.

  • MMS employees filled out reports for oil companies in pencil and allowed them to make corrections and return the reports in ink.

  • MMS employees misused government computers, which generally mean they were watching porn on the fed computers on the j-o-b!

All of this was icing on the cake baked several years ago by the MMS when they were in cahoots with mischief and mayhem around oil royalty payments and kickbacks. The Lake Charles office on the western Louisiana border seems to have been a special cesspool.

BP may have created this spill, but a government agency was absolutely an enabler in this mess!