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Ear to the Ground

Salazar Shelves Bush’s Offshore Drilling Plans

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Posted on Feb 10, 2009
offshore drilling
Wikimedia Commons / U.S. Department of Energy

Exhibit A: Platform Holly at the South Ellwood Offshore Oil Field near Santa Barbara, Calif.

Just before he skedaddled out of the White House, President Bush worked out a scheme to make millions of acres of the American coast available for offshore drilling, but on Tuesday, President Obama’s interior secretary, Ken Salazar, brought those plans to a halt, at least for the next six months.


The Bush proposal “opened the possibility of oil and gas leases along the entire Eastern seaboard, portions of offshore California and the far eastern Gulf of Mexico with almost no consultation from states, industry or community input,” Salazar said at a news conference in Washington. “In my view it was a headlong rush of the worst kind.”

He said his agency will hold four public meetings over the next few months - one in Alaska, one on the West Coast, one along the East Coast and one near the Gulf Coast - to hear from governors, local officials, industry groups and environmentalists about the plan.

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By mmadden, February 12, 2009 at 8:38 am Link to this comment

The USA has to move off the oil addiction - sooner rather than later.

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By Hulk2008, February 11, 2009 at 3:40 pm Link to this comment

mike nelson,
  Re: “....resulting energy price inflation in the U.S. will hit American business hard..”, remember Reagan’s line, “Now there you go again.” 
US business already has taken a huge hit; The relatively recent drop in oil prices was in response to that fact.  And if we continue our efforts to eliminate dependency on fossil fuels, the prices will drop again. Moving back to rail for freight and promoting teleworking for most workers and public transportation for the rest will again make oil an also-ran energy source.  With sufficient intelligent efforts, petroleum can be put back in the same category as buggy whips and whale oil. 
  The problem US business needs to overcome is their 1940’s management style -  people DO produce without someone cracking a whip - workers CAN produce withOUT being on-site 24-7.  We DO have the technology - but management lacks management skills.  In fact, businesses could run much more efficiently on about 3% of the existing bloated management hierarchies - you know, those upper-level types in the corporate jets who haven’t seen a product or process in 50 years.  That’s why small business ALWAYS is best - they spend little or nothing on clueless “boss” types. 
  Personally, I cannot wait until 2-guys-in-a-garage invent the perfect fuel cell technology - Heck, maybe it will be me and my partner.  I rely on Yankee ingenuity.

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By Purple Girl, February 11, 2009 at 8:04 am Link to this comment

I the So Called ‘American Energy Corps’ wanted to maximize the output they should have been using the thousands of acres already leased to them.they shouldn’t have closed up numerous Drilling platforms over the last few decades. Such actions prove they have no interest in increasing Oil or NG production here.Apparently they have felt their liasson with the foreign oil Shieks was far more effective. But at what..Reducing our fuel cost- obviously not. Assuring unfettered supply, obviously not. What could have been the advantages to this unholy alliance? Insuring other profit making ventures, god knows Wars are profittable. Halliburtons Spawn KBR is testiment to that incentive.
America will never be ‘Energy independent’ Until we seize Back our own energy producing resources from these Profiitteers. This is the reason they ahve consistently blocked Wind & solar innovations- we could have our own mill and panels, not requiring US to by any power form them. Man that would really F*ck Up not only their Profits, but their Global Power over humanity. What Wars could they Trump up if we no longer must kill each other for limited resources like the sludge they hoard and peddle. How could they limit food Production if we are generating energy to plow the fields and harvest the crops?
It’s not that they not only don’t care about Glboal warming..Global warming is a stratedgy to assure their products are required and are sold to the highest bidders for decades to come. Astronomical profits and Power when the resource is scare, but the need is Worldwide and dire. I consider that Business Stratedgy to be a Crime Against Humantiy.

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By hippy pam, February 11, 2009 at 7:59 am Link to this comment

GOOD for him-I applaud…..NOW get our people OUT OF IRAQ-AFGANISTAN-wherever…..Bring them home…..
!!!!!!!!STOP “ole bullshits” USELESS WAR!!!!!!

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By Jim Yell, February 11, 2009 at 7:25 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Ken Salazar is doing things right. Don’t celebrate too much as Bushies did so much damage leaving that a lot of their bad behavior may not be challenged just because there is so much of it.

We need to use new technologies. Nuclear is not clean energy and more of oil is just going to cause more degradation of evironment and poison us all. The opportunity to change is here, but not if we ignore change to prop up bad energy use and wasteful energy use.

New jobs will be created using new technologies and that will give jobs to workers losing jobs now. The government will have to do this, because capital will not.

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By mike nelson, February 10, 2009 at 6:20 pm Link to this comment
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I think that we will see the Obama administration do everything possible to restrict development of U.S. oil and gas resources. This will force American energy use to heavily subsidized alternative energies, artificially separating us from world energy markets. The resulting energy price inflation in the U.S. will hit American business hard, decreasing or erasing profitability and making us uncompetitive on world markets. Job losses will rise as business profitability declines and tax revenue sinks. But we will be using alternative energies, but at a high cost to employers and families. It will make the Carter presidency seem like the good old days.

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By screamingpalm, February 10, 2009 at 5:21 pm Link to this comment

I have to admit, I had my doubts about his nomination, but Salazar seems to be doing a fine job so far despite his previous record.


“Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has canceled a controversial last-minute Bush administration attempt to auction off nearly 150,000 acres of wilderness in southern Utah.”

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By Freepressmyass, February 10, 2009 at 3:51 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

A 6 month stall tactic pretending to care about local public concerns.

If he was serious about the environment, he would have shelved the entire thing, permanently.

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By Melburnian, February 10, 2009 at 3:45 pm Link to this comment
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No doubt the Governor of Alaska will think this is a splendid idea…

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