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White House/Kagan Continuing to Withhold 1600 Documents; GOP May Boycott Opening of Hearings | Main | CA "considering" digital licence plates that flash ads
June 22, 2010

Judge Blocks Obama's Offshore Drilling Moratorium

Interesting -- this is just a stub but I suppose the theory is that Obama simply doesn't have the constitutional power to order such a thing absent an act of Congress. (Or, actually, the order is granted in order to explore this question, but the grant of a stay is usually premised on a probability of success on the merits.) Wrong; see below.

More: Conscious but incoherent posts this:

Feldman says in his ruling that the Interior Department failed to provide adequate reasoning for the moratorium. He says it seems to assume that because one rig failed, all companies and rigs doing deepwater drilling pose an imminent danger.

Article now posted; precisely as conscious but incoherent said.

Thomas Sowell, meanwhile, argues that we're on a slippery slope to tyranny, and he plays the Hitler card, too.

How the Blow Out Preventer Failed: This is why I'm pissed off and pro-additional-regulation here.

This NYTimes graphic shows what the BOP was supposed to do. Several critical systems had no back-up at all; if they failed, the entire BOP failed.

Further, this device -- a ram shear arm which basically crushes the pipe closed -- was not backed up by another. Just the one.


Think about it. If you're drilling at that depth, it is costing you a huge sum of money. What is the marginal cost of adding another ram shear arm further down the pipe, or, for that matter, two more?


To save on the costs of an additional device which, what could it cost, $50,000 tops? $100,000? Sure, it costs money to maneuver it into place, too, but can't you take care of three of them if you're taking care of one?

In the huge pile of costs to drill one of these, you can't spare that kind of additional money for safety?

Thanks to rdbrewer for that.

Oil Companies Argue Obama's Moratorium Is Unsustainable and Wrongheaded: And it just seems to be a case of President Present Procrastination trying to "do something" or be perceived as doing such.

"There are things the administration could implement today that would allow the industry to go back to work tomorrow without an arbitrary six-month time limit," Newman told reporters on the sidelines of the conference in the British capital. "Obviously we are concerned."

Chevron executive Jay Pryor said the U.S. government's move will "constrain supplies for world energy."

"It would also be a step back for energy security," Pryor, global vice president for business development at the U.S. company, told delegates at the World National Oil Companies Congress.

The moratorium was challenged in court by an oil services company, Hornbeck Offshore Services of Covington, Louisiana, which claims the government arbitrarily imposed the moratorium without any proof that the operations posed a threat. A federal judge in New Orleans, Judge Martin Feldman, on Tuesday lifted the moratorium.

Hornbeck, which ferries people and supplies to offshore rigs, says the moratorium could cost Louisiana thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in lost wages.

digg this
posted by Ace at 01:54 PM

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