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BP, feds offer dueling Gulf spill estimates

BP Settlement
Posted at 5:42 AM, Sep 06, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-06 01:45:41-04

      NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Less than a month before a high-stakes trial resumes, BP and the federal government have offered conflicting estimates of how much oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico after the blowout of the company's Macondo well triggered a deadly explosion.

      In a court filing Thursday, BP urges U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier to use an estimate of 2.45 million barrels, or nearly 103 million gallons, in determining how much oil spilled into the Gulf and calculating any Clean Water Act fines.

      Justice Department experts estimate that around 4.2 million barrels, or approximately 176 million gallons, spilled into the water.  

      The second phase of a trial designed to determine how much more money BP and its contractors owe for the disaster is scheduled to start on Sept. 30.