Toledo Talk

Are You Buying Gas From BP?

It seems that in some areas of the US, there is a "boycott" of BP. Since I gas up exclusively at Costco because of the savings, avoiding a BP station for a fill up is a non issue. I still see plenty of customers at their pumps. How about you?

created by holland on May 31, 2010 at 05:17:30 am     Outdoors     Comments: 48

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My feeling is that this could have happened to any oil company. So to get the point across, the US would need to boycott all oil and gas companies - which would never happen.

It all goes back to the US dependence on oil!

posted by Spaceace on May 31, 2010 at 07:24:04 am     #  

TV reports that gas is sold between companies. So BP could still be in your tank even if you do not patronize their independently owned service stations. From other reports it was just an accident waiting to happen. And the fouled shrimp aren't really a problem. In a nation where "Jackass" is a cultural phenomenon I am sure there are young people who would eat a pound of them on a dare.

posted by oldsendbrdy on May 31, 2010 at 09:41:45 am     #  

No, I'm not buying fuel from BP. Screw 'em.

Write your Elected Critters and voice your displeasure with this situation.

posted by madjack on May 31, 2010 at 11:06:10 am     #  

I shop where ever is cheapest.

Accidents like these can happen to any company. If we really want to make a statement, somethnig much more drastic then not shopping at BP is needed.

Notice the gas prices are down in light of the bad PR?

posted by OhioKimono on May 31, 2010 at 11:49:20 am     #  

I was out on a boat in the maumee yesterday and noticed that all of the fill up stations for boats sport a BP sign. I've been thinking a lot about the boycott and knowing how hard it would be to stop supporting BP all together, since they do supply so many other gas stores with gas, I'm resolved to just driving less and partially boycotting gas all together. It's a silly notion I know.

posted by upso on May 31, 2010 at 11:51:12 am     #  

I stopped buying gas at BP stations after they started charging different prices depending on the customer's method of payment.

It would be difficult for a person to avoid BP entirely, not knowing who else they supply.

These days, I get most of my gas from Giant Eagle. Not sure who supplies them to be honest?

posted by mom2 on May 31, 2010 at 12:07:24 pm     #  

I've started refining my own gas at home.

posted by hank on May 31, 2010 at 01:36:16 pm     #  

I didn't like BP to begin with and almost never went there. Now, I'll definitely not get gas at BP. I'm with Holland I get my gas at Costco. The irony of the situation is that I hate gasoline and secretly (wel, not so secretly) pray that prices with climb out of control. Higher and higher gas prices will probably be the only way to get us to stop using the nasty stuff. Once we're to that point we won't have to worry too much BP creating natural disasters. I know I'm kidding myself. But, let a guy have a dream.

posted by joelwashing on May 31, 2010 at 01:47:03 pm     #  

Also, just did a little research and found out that places like Sam's Club and Costco buy gas through brokers. These means that they will be getting there gas from who ever has it for the cheapest. This could be anyone of the companies out there including BP.

Further reason to try to find ways to use gasoline or none at all.

posted by joelwashing on May 31, 2010 at 01:49:48 pm     #  

BP doesn't even own the stations in the U.S. So boycotting the gas stations is only hurting U.S. owners.
It's been over a month and yet the oil continues to blow into the ocean. While it could have happened to any company, the focus now should be on finding a way to plug the hole, get better inspections on current wells and new wells.
It just keeps getting worse and I really don't see how Obama, Washington, or anyone else pointing blame is going to solve anything.
I wonder what would the reaction be if this occurred when gas was over $4 a gallon.

posted by hockeyfan on May 31, 2010 at 04:09:32 pm     #  

I am not saying that BP's accountability should go unchecked. But, the negative effects of unintended consequences from a boycott may well offset the punishment of BP it is intended to produce.

There are many independent stations who pump BP gas. Should these small businesses be punished for a mistake of one of their suppliers? Consumer cost at competing stations like Sun Oil and Marathon may well increase due to supply and demand directly hurting your wallet. Many high paying jobs at the local BP refinery will suffer. Future R&D of alternative energies currently being conducted by BP will be scaled back due to lack of funds. Additional funding of the clean-up operation could be curtailed by BP simply by them declaring bankruptcy thus diverting the cost back to the US Government and we know where that will lead; higher taxes on gasoline, more government bailouts, increases in the debt therefore mortgaging more of your child's future, etc.

So while I do not know what sort of punishment should be levied against BP, I certainly do not think a boycott will have the intended results some desire.

Remember that logical choices generally have a better outcome then those based on emotion.

posted by KraZyKat on May 31, 2010 at 05:21:29 pm     #  

Gasoline is a fungible commodity. As I understand it, both BP and Sun refineries in Toledo make a basic "recipe" gasoline which is sold at their terminals, and anyone else who sells gasoline under their own brand can add in whatever they like in terms of ethanol, injector cleaners/detergents, etc. and then truck it to their stations.

posted by anonymouscoward on May 31, 2010 at 07:01:12 pm     #  

Bankruptcy? Not likely. BP's first quarter 2010 profits were $6.1 billion, double that of last year's. Sales outside the US would most likely continue at a strong pace.

This could happen to any company? Maybe not.
According to ABC news BP has the worst safety record of any major oil company.

posted by holland on May 31, 2010 at 07:51:38 pm     #  

As when gas prices soared, everyone complained, but few did anything to help. Did we, as a nation, do anything to reduce our dependency on oil? No.
Before we all jump on the BP boycot band wagon, let's get some real information on what companies do real damage to the environment. Not just the ones in the news.

posted by hockeyfan on May 31, 2010 at 09:01:59 pm     #  

According to, Ohio is the 6th worse state in major chemical releases/waster generation.

Looking around that site, I'm feeling like purchasing an oxygen mask and chemical suit to live here. lol

posted by hockeyfan on May 31, 2010 at 09:08:53 pm     #  

Thanks for the link, Holland. BP clearly thumbs its nose at violations, and the government should start sending them to jail rather than just charging them with civil penalties. At what point does it become criminal after there are repeated civil violations? Only when the CEO and other executives at BP go to jail will they stop endangering the public and the environment with their greed.

posted by gemini on May 31, 2010 at 09:44:37 pm     #  

Amen Hockeyfan.

posted by OhioKimono on May 31, 2010 at 11:18:17 pm     #  

Hate to burst everyone's bubble, but hazardous waste and toxic discharges are not thought of as serious as we think.
Big companies get to discharge so much pollution into the environment. If they exceed that amount, they can buy the "unused" waste amounts from other companies and avoid fines and discipline.
No matter what is said in public, politicians look the other way about pollution, unless it helps their careers. Drilling that oil well was done only after the government agency "allowed" it to happen without any additional precautions for such a deep drill. These agencies are supposed to be watching for dangerous situations. They didn't and now it's costing us. Like I've posted before, let's get some smart action people involved and get that thing capped, then make the requirements better to prevent this in the future.

posted by hockeyfan on Jun 01, 2010 at 12:45:02 am     #  

I've seen numerous reports that go against what ABC is saying, and that BP is one of the most enviromentally friendly companies.

I'll see if I can find a few that I seen.

posted by lfrost2125 on Jun 01, 2010 at 08:24:41 am     #  

My cousin used to own a lawnmower shop, and she said they could always tell when a customer had used BP gas in their mower: it ate through the seals. Since then, I've never used it (that I know of).

And nice to have you back, holland; where you been? :-)

posted by Anniecski on Jun 01, 2010 at 02:17:58 pm     #  

That story about BP gas is the biggest bunch of crap I've ever heard. I'm not sure what "seals" they are referring to, but I'd love to challenge them to get 5 different kinds of gasoline, put in some seals and gaskets and see that none will "eat" through any of them.
It's amazing what some people will say or assume. I had someone tell me that Quaker State oil would gunk up their engine so bad it caused it to blow up. Nice thought, but very, very hard to believe.
So Quaker State blows up engines and BP gas eats seals. Wow, I'm excited. That means there should be plenty of repair work coming my way due to "acid gas".

posted by hockeyfan on Jun 01, 2010 at 03:25:53 pm     #  

May 31, 2010 - BP oil spill contract and letter cloud media access :

BP has made claims that it has not blocked media from covering the oil spill. But a contract that became valid May 2 suggested otherwise. The Vessels of Opportunity contract put fishermen at risk of losing their job, which is their only form of income, if they speak with the media. On May 24, some received a notice indicating that Article 22 and paragraph five of Exhibit C were deleted from the original contract. Still, many are confused and concerned with their job security if they speak with media members.

Media outlets have also reported being forced off of oiled beaches and restricted from staging areas by the oil company. Some fishermen we have spoken with say they were told explicitly by their supervisors that they were not allowed to tell anyone what they see while out on the job.

One loophole we've found in gaining access is with the fishermen's wives. Many of them see what their husbands, their families, and their community are going through, and they are willing to speak out. "I don't care - I didn't sign a contract," said Cherie Pete. This is a sentiment shared by many wives we've spoken to. Her husband, a lifelong shrimper and boat builder, is now working with Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries as a contractor paid by BP.

posted by jr on Jun 01, 2010 at 07:19:51 pm     #  

Everyone has a price and if you are responsible for supporting a family, hush money sounds really, really good.
Sad, but it's the truth.

posted by hockeyfan on Jun 01, 2010 at 08:11:05 pm     #  

June 2, 2010 NY Daily News story

BP's central role in the disaster cleanup has apparently given the company a lot of latitude in keeping the press away from beaches where the oil is thickest. On Monday, a Daily News team was escorted away from a public beach on Elmer's Island bycops who said they were taking orders from BP.

"When we found this [dead] dolphin it was filled with oil. Oil was just pouring out of it. It was the saddest darn thing to look at," said a BP contract worker who took the Daily News on a surreptitious tour of the wildlife disaster unfolding in Louisiana.

"There is a lot of coverup for BP. They specifically informed us that they don't want these pictures of the dead animals. They know the ocean will wipe away most of the evidence. It's important to me that people know the truth about what's going on here," the contractor said. "The things I've seen: They just aren't right. All the life out here is just full of oil. I'm going to show you what BP never showed the President."

After checking that he was unobserved, he motored out to Queen Bess barrier island, known to the locals as Bird Island. The grasses by the shore were littered with tarred marine life, some dead and others struggling under a thick coating of crude. "When you see some of the things I've seen, it would make you sick," the contractor said. "No living creature should endure that kind of suffering."

"Those pelicans are supposed to have white heads. The black is from the oil. Most of them won't survive," the contractor said. "They keep trying to clean themselves. They try and they try, but they can't do it."

"That grass was green a few weeks ago," the contractor said. "Now look. ... This whole island is destroyed. How do you write a check for something like this?" He said he recently found five turtles drowning in oil. "Three turtles were dead. Two were dying and not dead yet. They will be," he said.

"Nature is cruel, but what's happening here is crueler."

posted by jr on Jun 02, 2010 at 12:03:57 pm     #  

I avoid BP, gave them up years ago when they initially sought a waiver to increase pollution dumped into Lake Michigan.

BP has a long and storied record of screw ups in their quest for profit: OSHA statistics show BP ran up 760 "egregious, willful" safety violations, while Sunoco and Conoco-Phillips each had eight, Citgo had two and Exxon had one comparable citation.

posted by bam2 on Jun 02, 2010 at 12:18:27 pm     #  

Photos at the Boston Globe's Big Picture Blog

posted by jr on Jun 02, 2010 at 12:50:48 pm     #  

I buy from BP - they are all independent stations who have no control over what goes on at BP Corporate across the pond. The local BP stations didn't do anything to deserve a boycot. They are local Toledo small business owners.

Better question is why are we 5 weeks in and Obama still has no plan to clean up the gulf?

posted by toledoramblingman on Jun 02, 2010 at 12:54:27 pm     #  

We have a for-profit private company that only answers to its shareholders responsible for and in charge of cleaning up the biggest enviormental catastrophe in this country's history and then telling the public the truth and consequences about what's really going on.

Yeah, right, I totally trust them.

posted by McCaskey on Jun 02, 2010 at 12:57:43 pm     #  

June 3, 2010 - Big Picture blog - Caught in the oil - (8 photos total) - 801 comments

A bird is mired in oil on the beach at East Grand Terre Island along the
Louisiana coast on Thursday, June 3, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

A Brown Pelican is seen on the beach at East Grand Terre Island along the
Louisiana coast on Thursday, June 3, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

A bird covered in oil flails in the surf at East Grand Terre Island along the
Louisiana coast Thursday, June 3, 2010. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

posted by jr on Jun 03, 2010 at 11:51:05 pm     #  

"Better question is why are we 5 weeks in and Obama still has no plan to clean up the gulf?"

you can't plan to clean up the gulf until you've figured out how to plug the well, and stop the flow. right now, planning on cleaning up unknown amounts of damage is impossible for anyone.

posted by upso on Jun 04, 2010 at 12:35:44 am     #  

Why not blame Obama. Many blamed Bush for Katrina. Not being a confessed republican or democrat, both parties blame the other for things that have no connection what so ever.
I do find it troubling that it takes over a month to cap a leaking oil well. If we don't have the technology to stop something like this, maybe we should stop drilling until we do.

posted by hockeyfan on Jun 04, 2010 at 03:11:55 am     #  

Actually, I believe the BP stations in this area are owned/operated by a group out of Detroit -who, I might add, have not done a very good job of managing them financially and otherwise.

Have you noticed the grounds of many of the BP stations? They've been neglected for quite some time.

Using the "buy local" argument, they do, at least, employ local folks.

posted by Foodie on Jun 04, 2010 at 06:05:45 am     #  

"you can't plan to clean up the gulf until you've figured out how to plug the well, and stop the flow. right now, planning on cleaning up unknown amounts of damage is impossible for anyone."

Shouldn't we say the same thing about illegal immigration?

I am not blaming Obama for the oil spill. I am saying he is inept when it comes to putting together a plan to clean up the gulf coast. Obama won't give a damn about the effects this is having on his enviroment until it effects one of the golf courses he plays on.

posted by toledoramblingman on Jun 04, 2010 at 06:44:38 am     #  

Those bird photos are just horrible.

posted by OhioKimono on Jun 04, 2010 at 07:55:33 am     #  

Conservatives want a small, weak government where corporations run the show...welcome to the end result.

Who is going to pay for all the clean up and for loss to the fishermen who make their living and hotels on the beaches?

Right now the liability cap sits at $75 million and the Republicans won't allow it be raised to $10 billion because "it will hurt the small mom and pop oil companies"...

posted by SensorG on Jun 04, 2010 at 08:09:58 am     #  

'Seriel enviornmental criminals'...

Tar balls now washing up in Florida:

Think it was Robert Reich the other day who suggested BP should be placed in temporary receivership.

posted by McCaskey on Jun 04, 2010 at 11:15:23 am     #  

Sensor - Obama fired the CEO of General Motors, took over car companies, took over Fannie and Freddie, took over the health care industry.

Are you saying all of a sudden Obama lost all his power and can't tell the various governmental agencies to go clean this crap up before more animinals, birds, plants, marshland are destroyed.

Obama is the one screwing around at this point. Order a clean up and then go after BP for whatever it can civilly and criminally.

posted by toledoramblingman on Jun 04, 2010 at 12:08:39 pm     #  

Obama fired the CEO of GM because the government bailed out GM and basically owned them at that point. You can't start clean up efforts until the oil has stopped leaking. This has nothing to do with Obama at this point.

The Bush analogy is bad too... people don't blame Bush for Katrina... they blame him for the recovery after the hurricane left. To use that analogy, we don't get to blame Obama then, until the hurricane of oil has stopped flowing and relief efforts begin.

I suspect (and I can't believe anyone wouldn't) that there are massive plans being made behind the scenes. It's not like Obama is just going to walk away from this... it's literally the biggest man made disaster the US has ever seen. If for nothing else, he'd never be reelected if he did.

Lets focus our anger BP and the shitty systems our government as a whole put into place for problems like this. Obama is a tiny piece in this puzzle.

posted by upso on Jun 04, 2010 at 12:25:20 pm     #  

toledoramblingman -
The fact that you think, Obama took over health care for the entire United States lets me know you have no idea what you are talking about.

posted by SensorG on Jun 04, 2010 at 12:45:43 pm     #  

heres a live video of the spill

Online video chat by Ustream

posted by upso on Jun 04, 2010 at 12:55:10 pm     #  

toledoramblingman makes it sounds as though just sending in people 'from government agencies' will make all the oil go away.

BP caused all this and they're the supposed 'experts' in the field, with the 'expert' equipment, people and know-how, to fix the damn problem. What clean-up tactics could agencies employ that the BP hasn't already tried?

My problem is at this point they likely can't be trusted with whatever information they're giving out. They officially only answer to their financial bottom-line and their shareholders and their CEO is a complete fucking douchbag.

posted by McCaskey on Jun 04, 2010 at 01:34:12 pm     #  

BP is more concerned with their brand image right now than cleaning up the gulf:

posted by upso on Jun 04, 2010 at 01:43:09 pm     #  

Can we agree on this?
1) The U.S. really needs to rethink/get working on a better plan to stop something like this in future
2) When something like this happens, the U.S. needs to get into "quick mode" and if in hours/days the company can't stop it, the U.S. should step in and stop it and bill the company.
3) The U.S. had the opportunity to "allow" the burning of the oil slick to prevent it from reaching the shores, but chose to not allow the burning due to the environmental effects. Not look at the mess.

posted by hockeyfan on Jun 04, 2010 at 01:45:30 pm     #  

I agree with 1&2.
Considering it's taken as long as it has to try and cork the well, 45+ days of a burning oil slick in the gulf wouldn't have been much better for the environment and might have slowed down efforts to fix the problem.

posted by upso on Jun 04, 2010 at 01:58:11 pm     #  

Where Obama and the feds can clearly be taken to task is their tendency, along with of course BP, to 'low-ball' the extent of the flow:

"Even at 12,000 to 19,000 barrels -- or about 500,000 to 800,000 gallons -- a day, the BP disaster, now in its 45th day, long ago eclipsed the 250,000 barrels spilled by the Exxon Valdes.

There's a very good reason one party to all this would want to low-ball flow estimates. As Mother Jones environmental reporter Kate Sheppard recently noted: The base fine for a spill is $1,100 a barrel, but it can go as high as $4,300 a barrel if a federal court determines that the spill was the result of gross negligence by the responsible party.

Should it come to that, at 12,000 barrels a day for 45 days -- at the base fine amount -- that would amount to $594 million; at 19,000 barrels, that would amount to about $940 million; at, say, 50,000 barrels, that would amount to about $2.5 billion. (And all those numbers would quadruple in case of gross negligence.

Even for BP, that's real money. The company earned $4.4 billion in profits in 2009."

posted by McCaskey on Jun 04, 2010 at 01:58:12 pm     #  

I do think that at some point--and that point is probably here now or rapidly approaching--Obama is ultimately going to be left holding the bag and paying the political price for all this.

Public disdain and mistrust for oil companies have been ongoing for decades, yet they continue to churn out record or near-record profits seemingly every quarter.

Presidents don't have that teflon-like luxury. The administration had better get their arms around this situation--from a better PR standpoint if nothing else--very, very quickly.

posted by McCaskey on Jun 04, 2010 at 02:19:32 pm     #  

Hockeyfan -
1 yes we need stronger regulations and a plan to get off of oil dependence

2 - the government doesn't keep the men and equipment around to turn this off. Sadly, BP is the only ones with the equipment to do this.

3 Burn was never a real option. Its not like the oil is coming straight up from ruptured pipe. In many cases its coming up miles and miles away. There is even some antidotal evidence that there a huge oil plumes still under the surface of the water that wont make it the top for weeks, while they travel 100s of miles.

posted by SensorG on Jun 04, 2010 at 02:25:50 pm     #  

I find it hilarious that some of the same teabaggers and other idiots who hate the government and any sort of government intervention are the ones demanding Obama go out and clean up BP's mess.

posted by anonymouscoward on Jun 05, 2010 at 07:56:33 pm     #