BP chairman: deep-sea drilling must go on

In this June 26, 2010 file photo, Plaquemines Parish Coastal Zone Director P.J. Hahn rescues a heavily oiled bird from the waters of Barataria Bay, which are laden with oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, in Barataria Bay, La. BP, the oil giant at the center of one of the world's biggest environmental crises, is making strong profits again, its stock has largely rebounded, and it is paying dividends to shareholders once more. It is also pursuing new ventures from the Arctic to India. It is even angling to explore again in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico, where it holds more leases than any competitor.

AP Photo/ Gerald Herbert, File

In this June 26, 2010 file photo, Plaquemines Parish Coastal Zone Director P.J. Hahn rescues a heavily oiled bird from the waters of Barataria Bay, which are laden with oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, in Barataria Bay, La. BP, the oil giant at the center of one of the world's biggest environmental crises, is making strong profits again, its stock has largely rebounded, and it is paying dividends to shareholders once more. It is also pursuing new ventures from the Arctic to India. It is even angling to explore again in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico, where it holds more leases than any competitor.

— The chairman of BP has told a Swedish newspaper that the oil giant never considered abandoning deep-sea drilling after the disastrous oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last year.

Carl-Henric Svanberg says despite the risks of such operations, halting them “doesn’t feel like a logical conclusion” after the Deepwater Horizon blowout because “50,000 holes have been drilled in the Gulf of Mexico and this was the first time things went this wrong.”

Svanberg, who was criticized for his soft response to the spill, told newspaper Svenska Dagbladet in an interview published Tuesday that “It’s like with an airline. If you’ve had one accident you can’t have another one, you need to keep a rock-solid focus on safety. But this is an industry that always will involve risk.”

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