S The petroleum industry is keeping a close watch on the approaching deadline for compliance with tough new U.S. rules on fiscal liability for oil spills. Interim final rules scheduled to go into effect Dec. 28 stem from the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA90). The designation of "interim final" rules leaves room for final adjustments on narrow issues. But in general, the rules will stand as presently structured. OPA90 imposes liability for oil discharges from U.S. and non-U.S. flagged tankers, as well as ports, terminals, and offshore pipelines and other facilities. Tanker operators have voiced the most vigorous oppositi...

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