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Wed Feb 27, 2013, 09:46 AM

Lawmaker attacks oil companies’ ‘free’ drilling in gulf

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/lawmaker-attacks-oil-companies-free-drilling-in-gulf/2013/02/26/cc55014a-806a-11e2-b99e-6baf4ebe42df_story.html

Lawmaker attacks oil companies’ ‘free’ drilling in gulf
By Steven Mufson, Published: February 26 | Updated: Wednesday, February 27, 7:00 AM

Once upon a time, the price of oil was so low — dropping under $11 a barrel in late 1998 — that Congress agreed that big oil companies needed incentives to drill for oil in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico. So in 1995 it ordered the Interior Department to waive royalties on virtually all of the oil and natural gas that would come out of wells drilled between 1996 and 2000.

Now Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), the ranking member of the Natural Resources Committee, has come up with an estimate of how much money the oil companies would have paid so far: $11 billion.

The committee’s Democrats have released a report that says roughly 25 percent of the oil currently produced in the Gulf of Mexico is not subject to royalty payments. It says more than 100 oil and gas companies fully or partially own more than 200 royalty-free leases for deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. And they could pump enough oil and gas from those wells over the next 10 years to generate $15.5 billion more in royalties — if they owed them.

The biggest beneficiaries so far: Chevron, which under ordinary royalty terms would have paid $1.5 billion, and Anadarko Petroleum, which would have paid more than $1 billion. Other leading winners are BHP Billiton with almost $680 million, Hess with more than $565 million, and Murphy Oil with nearly $400 million. Altogether the industry has pumped almost 840 million barrels of oil and 3.4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas royalty-free, the report says.

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Reply Lawmaker attacks oil companies’ ‘free’ drilling in gulf (Original post)
unhappycamper Feb 2013 OP
Sekhmets Daughter Feb 2013 #1
madville Feb 2013 #2
Andy823 Feb 2013 #3

Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 09:53 AM

1. Amazing ain't it....and still not enough for those #@^%$#@* n/t

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:28 AM

2. It's amazing how small of an amount that sounds like now

11 billion sounds like pocket change these days. Think about it, that would fund Social Security for 5 days or it could fund DOD for 6 days, or it could pay for 1.3 days of healthcare in the U.S.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 10:42 AM

3. Sounds like an entitlement program to me

So why aren't the members of congress talking about "CUTTING" this program? There are so many ways to cut waste by getting rid of things like this, instead of taking away one from programs for those in need. Congress could find all kinds of ways to cut the budget if they really wanted to get rid of the waste, without hurting those in need. So why don't we hear more about cutting this crap instead of cutting SS, medicare, teachers, police, firefighters, veterans benefits, etc.? Why won't congress do the job it is supposed to be doing instead of wasting time and money doing nothing?

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