x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

In Too Deep by Stanley Reed and Alison Fitzgerald

The story of a contaminated corporation

The explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico wreaked destruction on the area's ecosystem and compromised the livelihoods of thousands living in the nearby states. In Too Deep seeks to identify the causes of the disaster within the corporate culture of oil "major" BP.

Journalists Stanley Reed and Alison Fitzgerald have produced a punchy narrative out of dry corporate history, focusing on the stories of the individuals; from rig workers affected by the blast to departed CEOs John Browne and Tony Hayward whose hubris may have contributed to it.

Written from the perspective of US-based business correspondents, do not expect too much analysis of the wider questions arising from the catastrophe. Fault lay entirely in the shoddiness of the British corporation (which had the audacity to buy up American oil assets and do business on American soil) rather than in the gung-ho quest for oil to satisfy an insatiable American market.

Beyond doubt is that the future for BP itself now looks grim. Maybe not only "Beyond Petroleum" but "Beyond Preservation".