BP agreed Tuesday to pay $25 million in civil fines relating to two 2006 spills in their network of pipelines in Alaska. The fine stems from charges that the company willfully failed to comply with court orders to properly maintain the pipelines to prevent corrosion. This is the largest per-barrel fine levied against an oil company in a spill case—the latest blow to BP’s war chest and reputation. As a result of corrosion and poor maintenance of its Alaska pipelines, BP was deemed responsible for leaking more than 5,000 barrels of oil into the Arctic and into a lake on the North Slope in March 2006—and a smaller spill followed this disaster in August of that year. BP has already paid more than $20 million in criminal fines and restitution and was ordered to perform extensive repairs on some 1,600 miles of pipelines.
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