The Transocean Discoverer Enterprise drill ship collects oil from the site of the Deepwater Horizon oil well as workers try to stem the flow of the spill in the Gulf of Mexico, June 12, 2010.
Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images
January 3, 2013 The owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig where 11 men died in April 2010 has agreed to pay criminal and civil penalties to resolve Justice Department allegations over its role in the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/168551216/168564116" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
The Deepwater Horizon oil rig burned on April 21, 2010.
U.S. Coast Guard/Getty Images
November 28, 2012 The federal agency cited BP's "lack of business integrity" in dealing with the 2010 Gulf oil spill. The London-based oil giant agreed to plead guilty to criminal misconduct in the case and also agreed to pay a record $4 billion in penalties.
June 2010: A boom floats in the water as contract workers from BP use skimmers to clean oil from a marsh near Venice, La.
Win McNamee/Getty Images
November 15, 2012 Some who live along the Gulf Coast say the $4.5 billion in criminal and civil penalties aren't enough. Local authorities will continue to press their cases.
July 2010: Two pelicans sit on booms protecting Queen Bess Island, La., from oil that spilled after the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded in April.
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
November 15, 2012 The bulk will go to the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation, the National Academy of Sciences and at Coast Guard trust fund. The foundation focuses on wildlife conservation and the academy advises the government on science and technology.
November 15, 2012 Eleven people were killed and one of the largest environmental disasters in history happened after an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico exploded in 2010.
December 29, 2011 Justice Department prosecutors are considering the first such charges related to the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history — a disaster that also killed 11 workers when an oil rig blew up.
December 6, 2011 Halliburton, meanwhile, denies that allegation and accuses BP of fraud and defamation. The two companies are trading charges and blame for the nation's worst offshore oil spill — the April 2010 disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.
October 17, 2011 Anadarko was a minority partner in the project to drill for oil at the Deepwater Horizon site. Eleven workers were killed when the rig exploded in April 2010, and the spill was one of the worst in U.S. history.
Men fish off a pier at a jetty in Dauphin Island, Ala., with oil rigs in the background. The U.S. government is changing how it regulates drilling platforms.
October 4, 2011 Nearly 18 months after a disastrous oil spill killed wildlife and endangered businesses along the Gulf of Mexico, the federal government announces it will regulate not only the operators of offshore oil rigs, but the contractors who work on them, as well.
September 14, 2011 The worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history started with an explosion and fire that killed 11 oil rig workers in April 2010. BP, investigators say, "was ultimately responsible for conducting operations" at the site.
June 22, 2011 Transocean, the rig owner, BP made all the key decisions that led to the disaster. The British company has pointed the finger at many players. Who is ultimately judged to be responsible will be debated in court.
April 14, 2011 ProPublica and The Washington Post report that many people appear to have cashed in as BP spent billions in the year since the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. But "others hurt by the spill ended up getting comparatively little."
April 21, 2010: Fire boats battle the blaze on the Deepwater Horizon rig.
U.S. Coast Guard/Getty Images
April 4, 2011 Transocean Ltd. owned the rig that exploded a year ago, killing 11 workers and creating a massive oil spill that took months to contain. Now, it says it was "insensitive" to say in a regulatory filing that 2010 was — statistically — its best year.
December 15, 2010 Attorney General Eric Holder says the government intends to prove that the companies are responsible for billions of dollars in costs and damages.
NPR thanks our sponsors
Become an NPR sponsor