Two biologists with extensive experience in the Prince William Sound region are asking the state of Alaska and federal government to retain their option to make a claim by June 2016 against Exxon for the 1989 oil spill disaster.

The announcement from Kate McLaughlin, president and executive director of Prince William Soundkeeper, and Rick Steiner, of Oasis Earth, on Oct. 17, came in the wake of a decision by the state and federal governments to drop their claim for further damages from Exxon.

Steiner has petitioned the state and federal officials to reconsider and vacate their decision announced Oct. 15 to drop any further claim against Exxon pursuant to the reopener for unknown injury provision of the 1991 consent decree in this lengthy litigation stemming from the March 24, 1989 grounding of the oil tanker Exxon Valdez on Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound.

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