BP Gives Researchers Only 10 Percent of Funding Request

Sen. Nelson
Sen. Bill Nelson tours the USF College of Marine Science
ST. PETERSBURG (2010-6-11) -

BP has rebuffed a request by Florida scientists for $100 million for oil spill research. Instead, the British oil giant has proposed giving one-tenth that amount.

The $10 million dollar block grant would be given to jump-start research. USF Marine Science Dean Bill Hogarth says it would be doled out to 20 Florida institutions over the next seven months.

But Florida would have to compete for any future money with institutions all over the world.

“My concern is what happens after seven months? You get to have the University of Japan the way this is set up,” Hogarth said.

“I am very concerned that Florida has to be in control of what Florida does in Florida waters,” he added.

During a tour of the marine college, Florida Senator Bill Nelson he wants to take the decision-making process out of BP’s hands.

“If BP isn't paying the fishermen, I wonder if it'll pay this,” he said.

“And that's why a majority of us in the Senate today sent BP a letter saying we want you to set up a $20 billion dollar trust fund so that under the supervision of the U.S. government, all the claims could be paid.”

Nelson reiterated his call for the military to take over the cleanup operations in the Gulf. He said BP is not being accountable to anyone - including the federal government.

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