California's Attorney General has filed a civil suit against Phillips 66 (PSX) and...

California's Attorney General has filed a civil suit against Phillips 66 (PSX) and ConocoPhillips (COP) for allegedly violating state law by failing to properly inspect and maintain underground gasoline storage tanks at more than 560 gas stations in California. The lawsuit accuses the companies of improperly handling and disposing of hazardous wastes and materials associated with the underground storage tanks at retail gas stations throughout the state, as well as tampering with leak detection systems.

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Comments (17)
  • maudie
    , contributor
    Comments (488) | Send Message
    Either CA is profitable with these lawsuits or it's not. If not, pull out and leave the service stations to Mad Max.
    2 Jan 2013, 08:23 PM Reply Like
  • Vanderbilt3
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    I'd guess the over reactive Hollywood "types" will be getting their Slurpee's elsewhere.
    3 Jan 2013, 05:22 PM Reply Like
  • SoldHigh
    , contributor
    Comments (991) | Send Message
    If the techies ever sober up and leave CA for a biz-friendly state, the Peoples Socialist Republic of California will implode FAST!
    2 Jan 2013, 08:34 PM Reply Like
    , contributor
    Comments (10788) | Send Message
    It's already going that direction. They are spending $1-$2 Bil a month more than what they take in in revenue and have less than $7 Bil or so on their borrowing lines. Check back in April or May to see if anything solved.
    2 Jan 2013, 10:04 PM Reply Like
  • Anne Bonney
    , contributor
    Comments (105) | Send Message
    Uhm, this is the new way to fund the State. Hate to see that stock take a hit, but this looks expensive any way diced.
    2 Jan 2013, 11:27 PM Reply Like
  • auto44
    , contributor
    Comments (3570) | Send Message
    What the Hell. Brazil and Ecuador are doing it to Chevron. California figures they should get in line. Big pockets to fleece in the name of the environment. What could be more popular in Californiaabod.
    2 Jan 2013, 08:54 PM Reply Like
  • Alan Young
    , contributor
    Comments (2412) | Send Message
    These comments crack me up. Do you really approve of oil companies defying environmental standards, leaking toxins all over your city where they get into the groundwater, and (bast part) tampering with the monitors to hide it? If COP can do it, then why not mom and pop? How about that meth lab next door? Don't complain to the cops, you want to be business-friendly, right?


    I wish Eric Holder had the balls that Kamala Harris does.
    2 Jan 2013, 09:22 PM Reply Like
  • Veritas1010
    , contributor
    Comments (3181) | Send Message


    Do you really believe these lawsuits are benign and truly citizen focused?


    What I am trying to say is do you think this action is truly (and solely) initiated with the sole care, keeping and welfare of the citizens and the environment of the great Bear State in mind? Further, in a litigious society is this the only adversarial action that might have been a starting point to receive financial remuneration for the citizens of our most populous state?


    No one is arguing rationally that there are times government both state and federal must file suit to protect its citizens and environment, but is it the only way? Is it the wisest way? For an over taxed, cash strapped state adversarial actions against the "big bad oil companies" makes great press and political points, but do you really think the state would care (theoretically) if 560 meth labs had produced (potentially) an equal amount of environmental and/or social abuse and toxicity???


    Think about it Mr. Young, if your answer is still an unqualified "yes", then I ask who is being naive here?
    2 Jan 2013, 09:55 PM Reply Like
  • Tricky
    , contributor
    Comments (2429) | Send Message
    Alan, that was my reaction, as well.


    These guys are accused of TAMPERING with the leak detection systems. They got busted. And now people are complaining about a law actually being, you know, enforced?
    2 Jan 2013, 09:57 PM Reply Like
  • robgra
    , contributor
    Comments (993) | Send Message
    If indeed COP or PSX "violated a state law" then why is a CIVIL suit even required? Did the law lack enforcement provisions or penalties for violation? Or is the state seeking more "punishment" than they know is possible by the appropriate criminal prosecution?
    2 Jan 2013, 10:05 PM Reply Like
  • meepstone
    , contributor
    Comments (39) | Send Message
    I was wondering why it was a civil suit as well if they broke the law.
    3 Jan 2013, 01:10 AM Reply Like
  • mcdonaldfive
    , contributor
    Comments (40) | Send Message
    Likely there is some interpretation of 'breaking the law' required. For example, what exactly is tampering? Do the detectors produce false positive indications? Do the operators reset the machines to see if they continue to indicate a variance? Is this resetting considered tampering? Where are the sensors located? If the sensor is moved is that tampering? If a sensor fails then how long is a reasonable time before it is replaced/repaired?


    There are likely a hundred shades of gray to be worked out by the lawsuit regarding what constitutes tampering. The State of CA has their view and the companies have a different view. Expert witnesses will be required. It will all be very expensive.
    3 Jan 2013, 01:30 AM Reply Like
  • daphnex2
    , contributor
    Comments (127) | Send Message
    California's bureaucratic money gougers will siphon off anything to make a buck for their black hole of waste and abuse.
    3 Jan 2013, 04:26 AM Reply Like
  • Stonecutter12
    , contributor
    Comments (88) | Send Message
    Gives new meaning to the term Californication.
    3 Jan 2013, 08:08 AM Reply Like
  • gasguzzler
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    Another typical example of wasting precious CA taxpayer funds
    3 Jan 2013, 11:35 AM Reply Like
  • meltonsly
    , contributor
    Comment (1) | Send Message
    Anyone that has actually worked for a living, particularly for a business regulated by a bureaucracy, knows there is no limit to the safety & security checks that must be executed on a daily basis by infallible agents, namely human beings. Regulations are meant to contain human error and protect society at large; however, whatever happened to 1) Go to the source, 2) allow efforts at reasonable remedies, then 3) LASTLY sue if neglect or defiance are truly in evidence.


    I worked for this company in a fairly small downstream manufacturing operation that had high accountability standards - right down to careful attempts to contain every piece of ghost poop used (styrofoam packaging)! We had 6 operating facilities in 5 different states that all operated under the same administration -- EXCEPT for the California facility. There was a whole different set of manuals (Administration, Human Resources and Legal) for the California operation. I frequently wondered why we tried to do business there! I never would.


    I don't know the particulars of this case, but this is not a big, bad mean ol' oil company trying to dupe the good citizens of California! And if the good citizens of California aren't careful, they'll further drive business away and litigate themselves right out of any legitimate commerce.
    3 Jan 2013, 05:23 PM Reply Like
  • Sunshine123
    , contributor
    Comments (1120) | Send Message
    I agree. The California lawsuit against ConocoPhillips and Phillips 66
    is egregious to say the least. Companies make mistakes. yes. But,
    California is in the wrong.
    3 Jan 2013, 11:17 PM Reply Like
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