Obama offers offshore oil drilling program

President Barack Obama, who campaigned against offshore drilling for oil during his 2008 Presidential campaign, now wants to allow such drilling 50 miles off the Virginia coast and may open up other stretches of the Atlantic coast and areas off Alaska.

Obama will offer a program that reverses the long-standing ban on coastal drilling outside the Gulf of Mexico, a move that will anger environmentalists and the left-wing of the Democratic Party.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the plan would eventually open up two-thirds of the eastern Gulf’s existing resources for drilling, allow drilling off the Virginia coast, study the “viability” of drilling off the mid- and southern Atlantic coastal areas and consider the drilling in Alaska’s Beaufort and Chukchi seas.

The New York Times reports that the first lease sale for drilling off the coast of Virginia could come as early as next year.

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12 Responses to "Obama offers offshore oil drilling program"

  1. Bill Cravener  March 31, 2010 at 11:42 am

    Well this will surely piss off the Liberals. I for one think it’s the right thing to do. What oil we may find is that much less we have to buy from the Arab countries. I see the Republicans are already bitching that Obama isn’t taking this off shore drilling far enough. Boehner has already dismissed the president’s plan as not going far enough in opening up U.S. waters for exploration. This is the guy who whines about the health care reform tax on tanning beds. Man, what a creep!

  2. Mightymo  March 31, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    I have no problem with it just so long as it’s not off of the Calif shore, although I disagree that it does anything what-so-ever to slow our need for Middle Eastern oil.

    In fact I think it’s counter productive to start drilling really because the country that hangs onto their own strategic oil reserves the longest will under today’s conditions also be one of the strongest countries.

    In the end I think it’s just a cop out, a cheap way to appease the repugs, and a little economic support for a nation in trouble.

    • Guardhouse lawyer  March 31, 2010 at 5:18 pm

      MM

      “I have no problem with it just so long as it’s not off of the Calif shore,”

      NIMBY?

      • Mightymo  April 1, 2010 at 3:31 pm

        Yep, NIMBY! I think I speak for the majority (although that may be changing with the times) when I say that most Californians don’t want any more oil drilling off the coast of Ca.

        I even think it’s counter productive for the rest of the US, but who am I to go against what they want for their own states. If they want it, go for it.

        • Almandine  April 5, 2010 at 8:34 pm

          You’re a states’ rights guy there, Mighty?

    • griff  April 1, 2010 at 1:26 pm

      Your “not in my backyard” comment reminds me of a situation in my town a few years back. AMD wanted to build a chip plant on vacant land adjacent to a SUNY IT campus. It was shot down by residents over concerns of truck traffic and noise. So they built it in some other community’s backyard, and we lost out on a thousand high-paying tech jobs. Of course, those would be the same folks that still complain about lack of employment opportunity.

      I don’t quite understand your second paragraph. You suggest we need to maintain our strategic oil reserves but think that drilling our own is counter-productive?

      • Mightymo  April 1, 2010 at 3:44 pm

        There are thousands of ways to make lots of money. Lots of money is not always the best reason to do something though.

        If we drill the reserves now, we’ll use it for what, powering SUV’s? People see the US reserves in different ways, but I see it as a very small portion of the overall world amount. I don’t think it will do much to prolong our availability of oil, reduce costs, or make many communities wealthy.

        What I do see it doing is encouraging the status quo which is to burn it up as fast as possible, then worry about where to get more when the wells run dry.

        I say hang onto it. Save it for a time when we truly need it to power our war machine and the vital things that will always need oil to function, because those things will always be here.

        When conflict arises, as I’m sure it will, we will be competing with the rest of the globe to get and hold Middle Eastern oil and being on the far side of the globe from it makes that task almost, if not completely impossible. Thus, we need to hang onto our own strategic reserves.

        • b mcclellan  April 1, 2010 at 5:35 pm

          So we remain as the eagle hovering above that which is not ours to it’s utter depletion. When nary a buzzard would take notice we flee back to our shores and gird for war over our supply.
          Corporate rules for corporate fools.

          The best laid plans of mice and men, need I say more ?

  3. Bill Cravener  March 31, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    Mightymo, I’m an old fart and love the combustion engine. After all the problems car makers are having with the electronics that control the modern vehicle I don’t see the electric or hydrogen car coming into production anytime soon or for that matter affordable for the average family. So, oil at least in my life time will continue to be the driving force. We need to find new oil fields and drill, drill, drill. That or go back to the horse and buggy like the Amish do here where I’m from. ;-)

  4. woody188  March 31, 2010 at 11:07 pm

    Thank you oh glorious exalted Unitary Executive! Drill Yellowstone! Drill Yosemite! Drill the Florida Keys!

    • Almandine  April 5, 2010 at 8:37 pm

      Well Woody, all this really misses the point. What the big O championed was exploration, not drilling. As the article says, “the plan would eventually open up ” coastal areas, but who knows when?

      My eyeballs get smoky even thinking about it.

  5. Carl Nemo  April 5, 2010 at 9:22 pm

    Recently I watched a documentary entitled “Food Inc” . It was truly a stunning production relative to that which we put in our mouths daily; ie., our food and the fact that the entire world’s food production is owned and controlled by five mega corporations and their wholly owned subsidiaries.

    What stunned me the most is the amount of oil it takes to produce our food. To bring a single steer to market takes 75 barrels of oil. One farmer with about 1000 acres in soybeans uses 45,000 gallons of diesel per annum ! On and on these figures went and this is only linked to food production. We live in an “oil based” continuum and evidently shall perish by it too. Everything in our vision field has some link to oil and the need for freshwater too. As a side note our US Navy is the largest consumer of oil on an annual basis which is mind boggling when we think of all the cars and trucks driving our highways too.

    Planet earth is soon to have 7 billion souls running about with over 50 percent living in squalid third world conditions, all hopeful to eventually have what we enjoy at present. China (pop. 1.5 billion) and India (pop. 1.2 billion) are coming on like gangbusters with their citizens hoping to emulate the American dream; ie., relative to uber consumerism. It simply isn’t going to happen without major conflicts breaking out for control of the remaining oil supplies and now even access to freshwater is looming in the decades to come.

    We’re past peak oil and seemingly past peak, easy fresh water supplies too. It takes a phenomenal amount of freshwater to produce our modern goods and utilization for services. So we can explore and drill all we want, but we’re still doomed it seems.

    I’ll supply the Netlingo.com world population counter along with interesting stats concerning our planet and it’s citizens or should I say denizens.

    http://www.netlingo.com/more/poptick.html

    After fetching the site, click on the “go here” link in the lower right hand corner so the worldwide statistics are available on a real time basis.

    Also folks might care to read the theories of Thomas Malthus an 18th century political economist that predicted our grim fate based on a burgeoning world population.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malthusian_catastrophe

    My apologies for sounding so glum about out future as a species, but as it’s said figures don’t lie, but liars (pols) figure.

    Carl Nemo **==

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