Paul Lachine

污染者必须负责

发自纽约——当英国石油公司及其搭档瑞士越洋钻探公司于2010年在墨西哥湾引发“深水地平线”漏油事故时,美国政府不但要求英国石油公司承担油污清理费用,赔偿受害者损失,还要为导致此次灾难的违规行为接受刑事处罚。英国石油公司已经为该事故调拨了200多亿美元用于善后补救工作和交纳罚金。根据上周达成的协议,英国石油公司将支付美国历史上最大的一 笔刑事罚款——45亿美元

同样的环境事故清理善后标准也应运用到那些在贫困国家经营的国际企业身上。这些大公司的势力相对当地政府来说通常极为巨大,以致许多公司都是在豁免权下活动,可以对环境造成严重破坏却极少或无需承担责任。随着我们进入一个可持续发展的新时代,豁免权应该转向责任制。不管是在富国还是穷国,污染者必须付出代价。大公司应该为它们的行为承担相应的责任。

尼日利亚就曾经是企业逍遥于环境污染惩罚之外的例子。几十年来,包括壳牌、埃克森美孚和雪弗龙在内的各大石油公司一直在尼日尔三角洲开采石油。尼日尔三角洲是一个拥有淡水沼泽森林、红树林、低地雨林和沿海屏障岛屿的脆弱生态环境。这片肥沃富饶的栖息地支撑着非凡的生物多样性——或者说在石油公司来破坏之前是这样的——而当地3000多万居民的健康和生计都依赖于该生态系统。

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