HOUSTON, Aug. 12 (Xinhua) -- British oil giant BP is suing the U.S. government over its decision to bar the company from new federal contracts to supply fuel and other services, U.S. media have reported.
BP filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court here Monday. The company wants the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suspension lifted and the company freed to bid for and secure new government contracts.
The suspension, which was issued by the EPA last November, came after the company pleaded guilty to manslaughter and obstruction charges related to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
The debarment affects only new federal contracts, not existing ones. However, it has the potential to cost BP billions of dollars in new business with the U.S. government, according to the reports.
An EPA spokesman declined to comment on BP's court action, referring questions to the Justice Department, which also declined comment.
On April 20, 2010, BP's Deepwater Horizon drill platform caught fire and exploded, killing 11 workers and triggering one of the worst environmental disasters in the country's history.