The ExxonMobil Corp. has agreed to pay a $6.1 million penalty for failing to comply with an agreement to cut pollution from four refineries in California, Louisiana and Texas. The Justice Department demanded the fine because ExxonMobil had violated a 2005 consent agreement by not adequately controlling smokestack sulfur emissions at the refineries as it had promised to do. Assistant Attorney General Ronald Tenpas said “the Department will not tolerate violation of our consent decrees.” Under that settlement, ExxonMobil in 2005 paid $7.7 million in civil penalties, and performed $6.7 million worth of environment-related community projects. The refineries are in Beaumont and Baytown, Texas; Torrance, California, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. ExxonMobil treats fines and penalties as just a cost of doing business. Considering that the giant oil company makes over $40 billion in profits each year, a few million dollars in fines won’t slow them down very much. To this politically powerful company, it’s just a cost of doing business – their way – and that’s not good for the American people as a rule.
Source: Associated Press
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