The first meeting of the President’s National Oil Spill Commission in New Orleans Monday (agenda) included nearly as much testimony on the Obama Administration’s moratorium against deepwater drilling as it did on the Deepwater Horizon accident. Many Gulf Coast residents view the moratorium — another one was issued Monday by Interior Secretary Salazar — as destroying jobs just as they’re most needed.
From Bloomberg, “Economic Damage of Drilling Ban May Dwarf Oil Spill“:
July 12 (Bloomberg) — The economic damage from the BP Plc spill in the Gulf of Mexico will be dwarfed by the Obama administration’s moratorium on deep-water drilling, the chief executive officer of a New Orleans business group said.
The six-month drilling ban, which the U.S. Interior Department revised today following lawsuits from local businesses, may affect as many as 24,000 jobs in Louisiana, Michael Hecht, president and CEO of economic-development group Greater New Orleans Inc., told a presidential commission today.
“Rigs were starting to leave” to drill in other nations, Hecht told reporters after testifying to the commission created by President Barack Obama last month. “The economic impact from the oil spill itself, however broad and long-lasting, will likely be dwarfed by the impact from the moratorium.”
National Association of Manufacturers’ President John Engler issued a statement yesterday on the moratorium:
Today’s announcement by the Obama Administration to place a new moratorium on any deep-water floating facility with drilling activities is a mistake. Manufacturers believe it is critically important to understand the causes of the Gulf of Mexico accident. However, canceling existing leases sets our country back in achieving economic and energy security while putting jobs at stake. The U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Louisiana and the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals have already spoken, and this new moratorium will only put our nation’s economy at a greater disadvantage.
Manufacturers who make and supply equipment, services, engines, boats and materials such as steel and concrete will also suffer massive economic consequences as a result of the Administration’s overly broad moratorium.
The expansion and development of the Outer Continental Shelf is vital to affordable, reliable energy and the long-term health of our economy and the prosperity of American workers.
Manufacturers will continue to work with the Administration and Congress to lift this new moratorium and expedite delivery of these valuable resources to American consumers.
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