Deepwater Horizon Halftime Reports Calls for Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement

For Immediate Release                                                 

April 16, 2024

Contact: Pat Conzemius, President & CEO

White Bear Lake, MN –   The 14th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill coincides with major accomplishments of $1 billion in restoration projects funded by the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council (RESTORE Council). For perspective, the Deepwater Horizon Halftime Report spotlights winning projects but also gaps in funding to coastal states and affected communities.

A large explosion in the air

Description automatically generatedThe Halftime Report is an oil spill restoration report that provides detail on 223 grants, $5 million or larger, that account for almost 90% of all restoration grants. Produced by TRPR, a Washington D.C. consulting firm, the report asks a series of pointed questions about restoration performance including how Congress and state lawmakers funded understaffed natural resource agencies dealing with a sudden surge in restoration activity.

Media coverage of the Halftime Report reveals large losses in purchasing power when grants and projects are delayed.  Due to inflation, several vital construction project costs rose 75% from the point of U.S. Treasury approval to the delivery of funds.

Report author Tim Richardson says, “The nation’s largest-ever deployment of environmental fine spending has achieved exciting results that are largely unreported in mainstream media, but there are also examples of unforced errors in the rollout of vitally needed dollars.”  The Halftime Report highlights both types of outcomes.

Pat Conzemius, President and CEO of Wildlife Forever said, “We are committed to ensuring that these landmark conservation efforts reach the ground and that communities have equitable access to funds intended to rebuild and restore what was damaged.”

The RESTORE Council, responsible for administering projects and disbursing settlement funds, includes each of the five Gulf States and six federal natural resource agencies. It oversees 60% of the funds in the Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund established in the wake of the oil spill. Under the 2016 Deepwater Horizon consent decree  British Petroleum makes payments into the Trust Fund over a 15-year period starting in 2016 and ending in 2031.

“A fresh look at Gulf of Mexico restoration through a supplemental environmental impact statement could be a powerful tool in reaching consensus on how to help states, counties, parishes, and the federal government focus on performance gaps and support changes needed to more efficiently deliver funding to key areas,” Conzemius said.

Deepwater Horizon projects can be tracked at:

Tim Richardson, author of the Deepwater Horizon Halftime Report is also the government affairs consultant for Wildlife Forever. Tim is the publisher of Kodiak Bear and the Exxon Valdez, a profile of the historic oil spill and the successful restoration that occurred in the aftermath of the nation’s first and largest oil spill. For more information: www.TRPR.Info