BP (NYSE:BP) was in the courtroom Wednesday for the first four of many civil lawsuits — 48,000, to be exact — filed against the company for the refinery it owned in Texas City, Texas. Though BP sold the refinery and related assets on February 1 to Marathon Petroleum Corp. (NYSE:MRO) for $2.5 billion, the repercussions the British oil company is facing from the problematic entity are still far from over. In fact, they’re only just beginning.
According to Reuters, a Texas jury in Galveston is hearing arguments for the lawsuit, in which neighbors of the refinery allege that the release of toxic gases from the oil giant exposed residents to potential health dangers during a 40-day period in 2010.
The lawsuits were first filed in 2010, but BP maintains that neighbors were not harmed by emissions, explaining in a statement Wednesday, “Neither the community air-monitoring network nor the BP fence-line monitors showed elevated readings during April and May 2010 and we do not believe that any negative health impacts resulted from flaring at BP’s Texas City refinery during this period.”