BP Allowed To Seek Oil Leases In The Gulf Of Mexico

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The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday lifted a ban that kept BP from bidding on new federal contracts. The suspension had been in effect since 2012.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with BP doing business in the Gulf.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MONTAGNE: The petroleum company is once again allowed to seek oil leases in the Gulf of Mexico. The Environmental Protection Agency yesterday lifted a ban that kept BP from bidding on new federal contracts. The suspension had been in effect since 2012, when regulators determined that BP had not corrected problems that led to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill two years before.

Under an EPA agreement, the oil giant can start bidding on new contracts as early as next week. BP currently operates 10 rigs and owns 620 lease blocks in the deepwater areas of the Gulf of Mexico - more than any other company.

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