Mexican States Lose Deepwater Horizon Court Appeal Case

The US 5th District Court of Appeals in New Orleans, Lousiana has upheld a 2013 district court ruling which said that three Mexican coastal states cannot sue BP over alleged losses arising from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

In September 2010, the three Mexican states of Veracruz, Tamaulipas and Quintana Roo filed complaints in the Western District of Texas for damages incurred as a result of the oil spill.

The states each filed suit against BP (well owner, operator, and block lessee), Transocean (owner of the Deepwater Horizon), Halliburton (cement contractor), Anadarko (co-owner and co-lessee with BP), and Cameron (manufacturer of the blowout preventer) for damages they allegedly incurred or would sustain as a result of the oil spill.

These damages included ”monitoring and preparing to respond to the oil spill; contamination and injury to the waters, estuaries, seabed, animals, plants, beaches, shorelines, etc., of the Mexican States; lost taxes, fees, etc., due to reduced fishing activity and fishing-related industries; lost taxes, etc., due to diminished tourism; and the net costs of providing increased public services.”

After the cases were consolidated in the Eastern District of Louisiana as part of the Deepwater Horizon multidistrict litigation, the district court in September 2013 ruled in favor of the —BP, Transocean, Halliburton, and Cameron—saying that the Mexican states did not hold a sufficient ”proprietary interest” in the allegedly damaged property.

World Maritime News Staff