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7:53 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Legal Scholars Warn Levee Lawsuit Could Affect BP Spill Claims

Soiled coastline after the BP oil spill.
Soiled coastline after the BP oil spill.
Credit Jason Saul / WWNO

Opponents of a bill that would derail a levee board's lawsuit against 97 oil and gas companies say experts are finding the legislation threatens claims against BP.

Seventy legal scholars say the bill threatens state and local litigation over the 2010 BP oil spill.

The levee board’s lawsuit says oil drilling and production has damaged the wetlands that protect New Orleans from hurricanes. It demands the companies repair that damage.

Governor Bobby Jindal opposes the lawsuit, and wants to sign a bill that would make it invalid.

He’s holding off on signing the bill amid questions about it being so broadly written that it could affect lawsuits arising from the BP disaster.

Jindal's chief lawyer disagrees with that assessment.

He has until June 22nd to decide whether to veto the measure he strongly supports.

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