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Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Obama Backs Away From Expanded Offshore Drilling

The Center Opposed Expanded Offshore Drilling & Supports Continuance of the Moratorium 

Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar has announced that the Obama administration is rescinding its decision to expand offshore oil exploration into the eastern Gulf of Mexico and along the Atlantic coast because of weaknesses in federal regulation revealed by the BP oil spill. The drilling will remain under a moratorium for those areas for at least seven years, until stronger safety and environmental standards are in place. Drilling will continue in the central and western Gulf of Mexico. There are approximately 4,000 wells in the Gulf.
The Deepwater Horizon oil spill convinced the administartion that they needed to proceed with caution and focus on creating a more stringent regulatory regime. The original expanded drilling plan was unveiled just three weeks before the BP accident and was part of a political effort to encourage more domestic oil production in exchange for Congressional action to limit the carbon dioxide emissions that are contributing to global warming. (NYT, 12/1/2010)

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