Environmentalist groups have criticized a deal between British oil giant BP and Russian energy firm Rosneft to explore oil and gas in Russia's arctic region.
"The Arctic is the most fragile environment in the world in which to drill for oil and there can be no confirmation yet that British Petroleum (BP) has learned the lessons for the Gulf of Mexico disaster," said Greenpeace spokesman Ben Stewart on Sunday, AFP reported.
Greenpeace spokesman noted that BP is the last company that can be trusted to operate in the fragile arctic region, PressTV reported.
"BP is the last company that should be operating there, that is why last year the government of Greenland refused to grant concessions to BP," Stewart added.
Stewart warned that an oil spill similar to the one in the Gulf of Mexico would be extremely difficult to contain in the Arctic region.
However, BP's Chief Executive
Bob Dudley claimed his firm has learned from the Gulf of Mexico disaster. Several US lawmakers have also called for a thorough review of the agreement for its potential threat to the country's national security.
Earlier on Saturday, BP and state-run Russian oil firm Rosneft signed a deal, allowing BP to explore huge oil and gas deposits in Russia's Arctic shelf.
BP will swap five percent of its stocks, valued at $7.8 billion, with about 9.5 percent of Rosneft's shares, according to the deal.
The agreement is BP's first deal since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the United States last April. The environmental disaster has cost BP billions of dollars in liability.