Run to Failure by Abrahm Lustgarten
BP and the Making of the Deepwater Horizon Disaster

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It was Big Oil's nightmare moment, and the dominoes began falling years before the well was drilled.

Two decades ago, British Petroleum, a venerable and storied corporation, was running out of oil reserves. Along came a new CEO of vision and vast ambition, John Browne, who pulled off one of the greatest corporate turnarounds in history.

BP bought one company after another and then relentlessly fired employees and cut costs. It skipped safety procedures, pumped toxic chemicals back into the ground, and let equipment languish, even while Browne claimed a new era of environmentally sustainable business as his own. For a while the strategy worked, making BP one of the most profitable corporations in the world. Then it all began to unravel, in felony convictions for environmental crimes and in one deadly accident after another. Employees and regulators warned that BP’s problems, unfixed, were spinning out of control, that another disaster—bigger and deadlier—was inevitable. Nobody was listening.

Having reported on business and the energy industry for nearly a decade, Abrahm Lustgarten uses interviews with key executives, former government investigators, and whistle-blowers along with his exclusive access to BP’s internal documents and emails to weave a spellbinding investigative narrative of hubris and greed well before the gulf oil spill.

About Abrahm Lustgarten

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Abrahm Lustgraten is a reporter for ProPublica. He covers energy and environmental topics, including natural gas, renewable energy, water resources, and energy policy. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Published March 26, 2012 by W. W. Norton & Company. 409 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, History, Political & Social Sciences, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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BP was plenty strong on the risk part, so much so that the EPA had staffers doing nothing but tracking the violations, and that plenty of whistle-blowers were sounding alarms about shortcuts, leaks and accidents waiting to happen from within the company itself.

Mar 01 2012 | Read Full Review of Run to Failure: BP and the Ma...

Publishers Weekly

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Echoing the government’s own finding, but belying the Obama administration’s about-face with respect to Gulf drilling and the expansion of drilling in Alaska, Lustgarten’s account makes clear that the disaster emerged from a business culture driven by Wall Street and a younger management cl...

Dec 19 2011 | Read Full Review of Run to Failure: BP and the Ma...

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