Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Facts on The Deepwater Drilling Moratorium

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 08:53 AM
Original message
Facts on The Deepwater Drilling Moratorium
Edited on Fri Jun-18-10 08:57 AM by berni_mccoy
I've seen a lot of disinformation regarding the moratorium flying around. There are a few points everyone should remember. First, it's not a moratorium on drilling. It's a moratorium on deepwater wells. Secondly, it means that there will be no new deepwater wells drilled. It doesn't necessarily mean leases won't be approved, it doesn't mean plans won't be approved. It means that drilling operations won't be allowed to drill until the moratorium is lifted.

Most of the information comes directly from the White House itself.

As such, here are some key points covered directly by the White House:

1. What about these permits? From May 24th: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/press-briefi...
MS. BROWNER: There is. The President has said no new holes. Let me tell you what --

Q So what are these permits?

MS. BROWNER: So what the Times appears to be talking about are modifications to existing permits. It is quite routine where youre currently drilling and you need to make a modification, youve encountered something that you didnt anticipate, and so you go back in -- and its called a permit, but I think the better way to think about it is that its a modification to an existing permit.

There are -- in addition -- so theres that going on. I think thats what the Times is reporting on. There are 23 permits out there for new drilling activities that are not -- have not begun. So what the President said is were going to stop; those have been stopped. There were two that were issued shortly after the accident. Those have also been stopped. So all of the deepwater permits that were not currently drilling are not going forward at this point in time.


2. What about existing deepwater drilling operations in the gulf? From May 27th: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/press-briefi...

And four, we will suspend action on 33 deepwater exploratory wells currently being drilled in the Gulf of Mexico.


3. What about these leases approved by the MMS in the gulf? Weren't they approved?
No, the leases were not approved, they were deemed acceptable. There has been no final sale on the pending leases in the Gulf, even though as late as June 11th, 448 bids were deemed acceptable.Secondly, even if a drilling company has a lease, it is not permission to drill. They must get a permit to drill once they have a lease. Secretary Salazar has cancelled the lease per a directive issued by President Obama. From May 27th http://www.mms.gov/ooc/press/2010/press0527.htm :

To improve the safety of oil and gas development in federal waters, provide greater environmental protection and substantially reduce the risk of catastrophic events such as the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today called for aggressive new operating standards and requirements for offshore energy companies and ordered a six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling. He also canceled a pending lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico and a proposed lease sale off the coast of Virginia, and suspended proposed exploratory drilling in the Arctic.

Secretary Salazar said the Administration will continue to take a cautious approach in the Arctic and, in light of the need for additional information about spill risks and spill response capabilities, will postpone consideration of Shells proposal to drill up to five exploration wells in the Arctic this summer. In March, Secretary Salazar cancelled the remaining four lease sales in the 2007-2012 program that the previous Administration had scheduled for the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas in the Arctic, and the President formally withdrew Alaskas Bristol Bay from the oil and gas leasing program. The Department will make decisions about potential future lease sales in Alaska in the 2012-2017 OCS program based on public input, scientific analysis, and the results of on-going investigations and reviews into the BP oil spill. (For a link to a fact sheet on OCS policy, click here.)

The Secretary today also cancelled a proposed 2012 lease sale for offshore Virginia to allow additional consultations with the Department of Defense on military training requirements in the area, and canceled a lease sale for the Gulf of Mexico that was scheduled for August 2010. The findings of the Presidential Commission, environmental reviews, science-based analysis and public input will inform the Secretarys decisions about whether to move forward with other leases sales in the Gulf of Mexico that are currently scheduled for 2011 and 2012, along with decisions about what areas in the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic should be considered for inclusion in the 2012-2017 OCS program.


4. Even after new safety standards are put in place, won't drilling, especially deepwater drilling, still be too risky?
Yes. Obama admits this in his oval office address: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/remarks-pres...

So one of the lessons weve learned from this spill is that we need better regulations, better safety standards, and better enforcement when it comes to offshore drilling. But a larger lesson is that no matter how much we improve our regulation of the industry, drilling for oil these days entails greater risk. After all, oil is a finite resource. We consume more than 20 percent of the worlds oil, but have less than 2 percent of the worlds oil reserves. And thats part of the reason oil companies are drilling a mile beneath the surface of the ocean -- because were running out of places to drill on land and in shallow water.


So, what is Obama going to do about it? A better question is what are the American People going to do about it? Again, from Obama's address:

This is not some distant vision for America. The transition away from fossil fuels is going to take some time, but over the last year and a half, weve already taken unprecedented action to jumpstart the clean energy industry. As we speak, old factories are reopening to produce wind turbines, people are going back to work installing energy-efficient windows, and small businesses are making solar panels. Consumers are buying more efficient cars and trucks, and families are making their homes more energy-efficient. Scientists and researchers are discovering clean energy technologies that someday will lead to entire new industries.
None of this goes to the question of why not just stop drilling altogether


So, while the transition off of fossil fuels will take some time, The Obama Administration has made the largest investment in clean and renewable energy than any other administration in the history of the U.S. And they've only just begin. Some details on what they've done are here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/issues/energy-and-environment

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act included more than $80 billion in clean energy investments that will jump-start our economy and build the clean energy jobs of tomorrow:
- $11 billion for a bigger, better, and smarter grid that will move renewable energy from the rural places it is produced to the cities where it is mostly used, as well as for 40 million smart meters to be deployed in American homes.
- $5 billion for low-income home weatherization projects.
- $4.5 billion to green federal buildings and cut our energy bill, saving taxpayers billions of dollars.
- $6.3 billion for state and local renewable energy and energy efficiency efforts.
- $600 million in green job training programs $100 million to expand line worker training programs and $500 million for green workforce training.
- $2 billion in competitive grants to develop the next generation of batteries to store energy.

Increasing, for the first time in more than a decade, the fuel economy standards for Model Year 2011 for cars and trucks so they will get better mileage, saving drivers money and spurring companies to develop more innovative products.

The President issued a memorandum to the Department of Energy to implement more aggressive efficiency standards for common household appliances, like dishwashers and refrigerators. Through this step, over the next three decades, well save twice the amount of energy produced by all the coal-fired power plants in America in any given year.

Supporting the first steps of a legally-binding treaty to reduce mercury emissions worldwide.

On Earth Day 2009, the President unveiled a program to develop the renewable energy projects on the waters of our Outer Continental Shelf that produce electricity from wind, wave, and ocean currents. These regulations will enable, for the first time ever, the nation to tap into our oceans vast sustainable resources to generate clean energy in an environmentally sound and safe manner.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
Scuba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 09:04 AM
Response to Original message
1. Good counterpoints to "anti-moratorium" talk
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Catherina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 09:13 AM
Response to Original message
2. ATLANTIS. 'nuf said n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 09:19 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. It's a well in production.
It doesn't need to be drilled.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 01:14 PM
Response to Reply #4
13. it should be shut down though
Edited on Fri Jun-18-10 01:15 PM by G_j
it's another potential time bomb.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. There is an investigation under way into the safety of that operation.
But as long as oil is being produced from it, I highly doubt it would be shut down. If it isn't safe, shutting it down could be more dangerous than letting it continue to produce oil (depending on pressures, volumes, etc).
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
jp11 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 09:19 AM
Response to Original message
3. I like information, thank you.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 09:59 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. I'm glad someone does...
and I will continue to provide it, despite some of the hyperbole that gets pushed as reality around here.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
NJmaverick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 09:25 AM
Response to Original message
5. Thank you, factual information is always welcome and appreciated
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
FirstLight Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 10:08 AM
Response to Original message
7. So what about the rigs that are already pumping?
There should be feds crawling all over the current rigs inspoecting them down to the last screw.

Here's a stupid science question... If there is a rig that is pumping oil and found to be a hazard/safety violator...how do they shut it down? isn't it one of those things that once the hole is drilled they HAVE to keep pumping the oil or it will back up and blow?


just wondering how this works
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 10:13 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. The point of the OP is to cover the Moratorium on Deepwater Drilling
Emphasis on drilling. Why don't you do some research on the topic since you seem very interested and make a fact-based post about it?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
nc4bo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. That's what I'm wondering myself.
How do we know if active and producing wells have been properly drilled, inspected and are operating safely? There's so much corruption in the very agencies designed to regulate these big corps that none of them can or should be trusted.

What a mess.








Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
OmmmSweetOmmm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 10:52 AM
Response to Original message
10. From Mother Jones yesterday. Obama Administration Approves 448 New Drill Leases for Gulf of Mexico
(thanks to tekisui)

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...


Thu Jun. 17, 2010 2:25 AM PDT

At his long-awaited press conference on the Gulf oil disaster last month, President Obama announced a moratorium on new oil drilling and exploration for six months. "We can't do this stuff if we don't have confidence that we can prevent crises like this from happening again," he declared. But while existing rigs may be out of commission for the near future, the administration hasn't exactly put the brakes on new oil and gas drilling ventures. In recent weeks, the government has quietly approved the sale of more than 400 new leases for vast swaths of the Gulf of Mexico. And these contractswhich mark the first step in the drilling processwere subjected to the same slapdash environmental oversight that failed to prevent the BP catastrophe.

The region was included in a plan created by the Bush administration's Department of the Interior to lease new areas of the Gulf to the oil and gas industries. But it was Obama's Interior secretary, Ken Salazar, who gave the go-ahead for the sale of Lease 2136,800 tracts covering 36 million acres off the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama in November 2009. The salewhich was held on March 17 this year in the New Orleans Superdomeattracted $1.3 billion in bids. Since then, the Department of the Interior's Minerals Management Service (MMS) has approved the sale of 448 of those tracts, 198 of them in deepwater, which is defined as more than 656 feet below the sea. BP is the proud new leaser of 13 of those tracts.

continued
http://motherjones.com/environment/2010/06/new-drilling...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. Those bids were deemed acceptable. The sale has been cancelled
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
OmmmSweetOmmm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 01:55 PM
Response to Reply #12
16. The leases were not cancelled, as of June 11th.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 03:04 PM
Response to Reply #16
18. They haven't been approved for final sale either.
Edited on Fri Jun-18-10 03:05 PM by berni_mccoy
Cash has not exchanged hands.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Spazito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 11:01 AM
Response to Original message
11. Thanks for the factual OP....
It is much appreciated.

Recommended.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
KittyWampus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
14. Thanks, many DU'ers prove once again a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
yowzayowzayowza Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 02:02 PM
Response to Original message
17. Thx for the recap!!!
K&R
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-18-10 07:06 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. You're welcome!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Mon Jul 28th 2014, 04:36 PM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC