Space porn: These images are (quite literally) out of this world
After BP this weekend rejected a government offer to pay $16 billion to settle civil claims over the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, Monday saw the beginning of trial proceedings against the oil giant.
According to the Guardian, “the trial is expected to be one of the biggest in decades. It will open with 400 minutes of opening arguments from 11 teams of lawyers. Thousands of pages of exhibits have been filed, and 80 witnesses will be called. Tony Hayward, BP’s former chief executive, will appear in a videotaped deposition.” Following this, if a settlement is not reached in advance, federal Judge Carl Barbier will determine how much BP and its partners should pay for their role in the Gulf oil spill.
Via the AP:
BP has said it already has racked up more than $24 billion in spill-related expenses and has estimated it will pay a total of $42 billion to fully resolve its liability for the disaster that killed 11 workers and spewed millions of gallons of oil.
But the trial attorneys for the federal government, Gulf states and private plaintiffs hope to convince the judge that the company is liable for much more… the federal government and Gulf states haven’t resolved civil claims against the company that could be worth more than $20 billion.
The DoJ is seeking to prove that BP was “grossly negligent” — a charge that, if the judge agrees, could vastly increase the oil giant’s penalty. The maximum civil penalty possible under the Clean Water Act rises from $1,100 per barrel spilled through ordinary negligence to $4,300 per barrel if gross negligence is proved. BP’s bill could be as low as $5 billion or as high as $17.5 billion depending on whether the gross negligence charges go through.
Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange told the AP that witnesses scheduled to testify at trial will reveal “new information about the cause of the disaster.”
“I think you’re going to learn a lot, particularly about the culture that existed at BP and their priorities,” Strange said.
Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email firstname.lastname@example.org.More Natasha Lennard.
NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins
On December 28, 2013, Expedition 38 crew member Mike Hopkins participating in the second of two space walks to replace a degraded pump module on the International Space Station. (NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio is reflected in his helmet!)
The Soyuz TMA-10M
The Soyuz TMA-10M headed towards the International Space Station with crew members from Expedition 37 onboard.
40 years ago the Apollo 8 mission flew up to the moon, orbited it ten times and then returned to Earth. This picture was taken from that flight and shows the Earth as it seemingly rises in similar fashion to a sunrise.
Sunrise from Expedition 36
NASA Flight Engineer Karen L. Nyberg of Expedition 36 took this photo of the sun rising -- a sight they saw nearly 16 times per day due to the speed of the International Space Station's orbit around the earth.
A pair of NanoRacks CubeSats -- nanosattelite spacecrafts carrying experiments -- were launched by Expedition 38.