The Interior Department announced recently that more drilling permits have been issued for the Gulf of Mexico. One company granted permission to work in the exploration of energy sector is BP. For the first time since the horrendous explosion of the Deepwater Horizon, BP has been granted a permit to drill.
“The permit awarded by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement is for an exploratory well in the Keathley Canyon map area, located about 246 miles south of Lafayette, La.
The granting of the permit is the latest sign that the British oil giant is climbing back from the political abyss. The embattled company’s political action committee is almost on pace to match what it donated at the federal level during the 2008 presidential election cycle. Between March and August, BP’s PAC made more than $50,000 in federal-level campaign contributions, ranking it among the cycle’s more generous donors.
Interior last week approved BP’s Gulf of Mexico exploration plan; the permitted well was one of those included in that plan.
“BP has met all of the enhanced safety requirements that we have implemented and applied consistently over the past year,” BSEE Director Michael Bromwich said in a statement. “In addition, BP has adhered to voluntary standards that go beyond the agency’s regulatory requirements.”
Bromwich and Interior Secretary Salazar are responsible for the backlog of drilling permits and lease sales. It is clear that the Obama administration is determined to run interference towards the drilling industry and even destroy it, if possible.
“According to a recent report from investment bank FBR Capital Markets, 20 deep-water drilling rigs would leave the gulf if U.S. regulators do not accelerate permitting. The analysts blamed BOEMRE’s pace on higher safety standards, not politics.”
With the departure of Bromwich on the horizon, the Interior Department is searching for a “drilling regulator”. The problem is, of course, that those most qualified for the job want no part of it because of the political element. Those most qualified are the engineers and geologists and scientists who are not at all interested in the politics of the energy world. Not to mention that those most qualified are also the most supportive to energy production and exploration in our own waters.
“He or she will find themselves in the middle of very important and controversial issues,” Bromwich said.
Along with the need to find a candidate with the right technical skills and background without appearing to be a “yes person” to the demands of industry, the new director also needs to be able to “stand up to the political heat,” he added.”
With unemployment so high, and communities along the Gulf of Mexico coastline in need of the jobs created by oil and gas drilling, it is just common sense to increase our own energy production. Energy independence has been our country’s stated goal for decades yet the effort has never fully succeeded. Drilling offshore has been safe and successful for decades and it is U.S. expertise that is called upon around the world.
Drill here. Drill now. Create jobs.
submitted by Karen Townsend, Contributor