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Scientists turn over e-mails subpoenaed by BP

Two scientists affiliated with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), commissioned by the Coast Guard to determine how much oil was spilling into the Gulf of Mexico after an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in 2010, were legally forced to hand over more than 50,000 pages of documents and 3,000 personal e-mail messages (see Boston Globe editorial).  The U.S. Federal Government has sued BP for its part in the disaster and BP, preparing its defense, sought a court order for a release of the documents. Susan Avery, president and director of WHOI, responded that "The situation leaves scientists and institutions vulnerable to litigants who could disregard context and use the material inappropriately and inaccurately in an effort to discredit their work."


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