Federal Government Holding Drilling Permits Hostage

Oct 12, 2010, 14:12 ET from Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition

HOUSTON, Oct. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition issued the following statement today regarding developments related to the lifting of the moratorium on deepwater drilling:

The Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition is encouraged by today's developments regarding the end to the deepwater moratorium. However, we want to warn our deepwater colleagues that as soon as they try to pop the champagne, BOEM bureaucrats will be there to stick the cork back in the bottle.

Actions speak louder than words. Moratoriums can be lifted, but the administration must start issuing new permits before rigs can get back to work. The moratorium on shallow water drilling was lifted in May, yet five months later a de facto moratorium remains in place, shallow water rigs have gone idle, and 40,000 American jobs have been put in jeopardy. What we need is decisive action, not hollow pronouncements. BOEM has issued only 12 permits for new wells in five months, forcing a quarter of shallow rigs to go idle. Shallow water permits are stalled as the BOEM continues to ignore the fact that the low-risk wells involve mostly natural gas, with little oil spill risk and are drilled in mature, predictable and known reservoirs using rigs with blowout equipment sitting on the deck of the rig.

We are grateful that Senator Mary Landrieu stood up for the thousands of hard-working men and women in the oil and gas industry and the people of not only her state but the welders, fabricators, equipment manufacturers, longshoreman, helicopter pilots, truckers, restaurant owners, supply boat captains and scores of others that support our industry all across the country. Through her courage and leadership, and the support of a bipartisan group of Senators and Congressmen from across the Gulf South and other regions of the country, jobs will hopefully be saved and our country's energy needs more secure.  

About the Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition

The Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition comprises a group of companies—Apache Corporation, Arena Offshore, Chevron, Delta Towing, Dynamic Offshore Resources, Energy XXI, Ensco, Hall-Houston Exploration, Hercules Offshore, Phoenix Exploration, Rowan Companies, Seahawk Drilling, W&T Offshore, and Walter Oil & Gas— that explore, develop and drill for natural gas and oil in the shallow waters of the Gulf of Mexico.  The coalition was established to enhance the understanding of shallow-water operations as policymakers develop legislative and regulatory responses to recent events. Follow us on Twitter @ShallowWaterNRG

SOURCE Shallow Water Energy Security Coalition