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July 21, 2009

Palin 1, Obama 0: California Budget Compromise Allows Drilling Off Santa Barbara Coast

Why only Santa Barbara? Because in this instance the oil producers were able to mollify the environmental freaks by shutting down oil rigs closer to the shore; these rigs will slant-drill from further out. They also agreed to shut down some production facilities by 2022.

This sort of compromise doesn't seem easily replicated, as most of the drilling we need is new and can't be offset by shutting down other rigs

It's not a clear win for Drill Here, Drill Now, but it's something. In the net, more oil will be produced. Assuming this isn't all sabotaged by the enviros through lawsuits.

Because California is in such dire financial straights they've actually agreed to start producing valuable goods again.

California could allow new oil drilling under a tentative agreement the state's governor and lawmakers reached to plug the state's $26.3 billion budget hole.

In a rare agreement with environmental groups, oil producer Plains Exploration & Production Co. (PXP) has proposed promptly expanding oil drilling off the coast of Santa Barbara, then shutting down four oil platforms and two onshore processing facilities in Santa Barbara by 2022. The company also agreed to donate 4,000 acres of land for public use. The company would slant-drill into the state's seafloor from a platform it operates in federal waters.

Environmental and community groups in Santa Barbara have hailed the project, called Tranquillon Ridge, as a major milestone in their efforts to shut down the oil rigs off Santa Barbara's coast. Current law allows offshore drilling operations that were in place prior to a 1981 moratorium on new offshore drilling to continue indefinitely.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has championed the project as a new source of desperately needed cash to fill the state's budget gap. The state would collect an up-front payment of $100 million from Plains, followed by and as much as $2.3 billion in royalties over the 13 years of the project.

The budget compromise supposedly ends the crisis without raising taxes. Which is a clearer victory.


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posted by Ace at 03:18 PM

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