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View Full Version : Obama Court Allows Offshore Drilling Until Final Decison on Ban


petegz28
07-08-2010, 05:04 PM
A US appeals court Thursday rejected the Obama administration's request to put on hold a ruling that lifted a temporary moratorium on deepwater oil drilling in the wake of the BP oil spill.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, based in New Orleans, ruled about an hour after hearing arguments over the administration's request to put on hold a lower court ruling that lifted the six-month moratorium.

It also designated August 30 for a hearing on the merits of a suspension of deepwater drilling.

The court earlier had said that it would decide on the matter early next week.

Drilling companies like Hornbeck Offshore Services [HOS 16.54 0.75 (+4.75%) ] and Diamond Offshore Drilling [DO 65.26 1.00 (+1.56%) ] had pressed to have the moratorium lifted, saying it was too broad and was causing significant economic harm.

During a contentious hearing before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, lawyers for the Obama administration said the judge discarded the government's expertise and said the environment was at risk if drilling began again too soon.

Judge Jerry Smith, appointed by President Ronald Reagan, questioned why the Interior Department issued a "blanket moratorium" without examining each of the deepwater drill rigs to determine if such an order was justified.

A lawyer for the drilling companies complained to the appeals court that the Interior Department failed to follow proper procedures in adopting the ban and should not grant a stay because of a "hypothetical threat" of another well blowout.

But Judge James Dennis, appointed by President Bill Clinton, said that the appeals court would have to find that Interior Secretary Ken Salazar was "irrational" in adopting the six-month moratorium since the U.S. Congress gave him the power to protect the environment.

"That's a pretty big step," Dennis said, adding that he was "satisfied he did not act arbitrarily or irrationally, but he sure could give more reasons."

Regardless of today's hearing, the industry is not expected to resume drilling in deep waters any time soon because of the legal uncertainties. Whichever side loses can appeal to the full appeals court, and the case ultimately could be taken to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Now in its 80th day, the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico is killing birds, sea turtles and dolphins, imperiling multibillion-dollar fishing and tourist industries at a time of high unemployment, and soiling the shores of all five U.S. Gulf Coast states.

Estimates of the leak's severity vary widely, to as high as 100,000 barrels per day.

It has taken its place firmly atop President Barack Obama's political agenda and complicated U.S. ties with close ally Britain. Obama's handling of the crisis has drawn severe criticism despite widespread public anger in the United States at BP.

BP's [BP 33.74 0.55 (+1.66%) ] New York share price on Thursday rose about 2 percent, adding to gains of 24 percent in the previous eight trading days on talk company executives were seeking new investors and optimism the worst might be behind BP.

The head of Royal Dutch Shell's U.S. arm told CNBC that the company could be interested in some BP assets if the company tried to sell off properties.

"If BP decided to sell assets clearly there are some things that would make sense for our portfolio. But that's a later decision because of what's happening now," Shell Oil Co President Marvin Odum said.

The Philadelphia oil services sector index was also up, rising more than 3 percent ahead of the hearing.

Exxon Mobil [XOM 58.81 0.38 (+0.65%) ], the largest U.S. oil company, expects heightened government scrutiny for the industry following the well rupture, CEO Rex Tillerson told analysts on Thursday.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/38148843

Bwana
07-08-2010, 05:17 PM
Nice! Suck it Barry.

orange
07-08-2010, 05:18 PM
BUT... look what I found on the sidebar:


Florida Governor Calls for Constitutional Ban on Drilling
Published: Thursday, 8 Jul 2010 | 4:48 PM ET


Florida Governor Charlie Crist on Thursday called for a special session of the state legislature to consider a constitutional amendment banning oil drilling off Florida's coast.

Crist said he would call lawmakers into session on July 20 for four days to craft a constitutional amendment to ban oil and gas exploration in state waters.

Drilling in state waters is already banned by statute but putting the ban in the constitution would make it much more difficult to overturn. The proposal would go on the November ballot.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/38154176

HOLY CARAMBA!

There doesn't seem to be a unanimous feeling in the gulf states that we need more drilling.

KC Dan
07-08-2010, 05:20 PM
BUT... look what I found on the sidebar:


Florida Governor Calls for Constitutional Ban on Drilling
Published: Thursday, 8 Jul 2010 | 4:48 PM ET


Florida Governor Charlie Crist on Thursday called for a special session of the state legislature to consider a constitutional amendment banning oil drilling off Florida's coast.

Crist said he would call lawmakers into session on July 20 for four days to craft a constitutional amendment to ban oil and gas exploration in state waters.

Drilling in state waters is already banned by statute but putting the ban in the constitution would make it much more difficult to overturn. The proposal would go on the November ballot.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/38154176


HOLY CARAMBA!

There doesn't seem to be a unanimous feeling in the gulf states that we need more drilling.
Isn't he Obama's almost white step brother? :D

ClevelandBronco
07-08-2010, 05:21 PM
BUT... look what I found on the sidebar:


Florida Governor Calls for Constitutional Ban on Drilling
Published: Thursday, 8 Jul 2010 | 4:48 PM ET


Florida Governor Charlie Crist on Thursday called for a special session of the state legislature to consider a constitutional amendment banning oil drilling off Florida's coast.

Crist said he would call lawmakers into session on July 20 for four days to craft a constitutional amendment to ban oil and gas exploration in state waters.

Drilling in state waters is already banned by statute but putting the ban in the constitution would make it much more difficult to overturn. The proposal would go on the November ballot.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/38154176


HOLY CARAMBA!

There doesn't seem to be a unanimous feeling in the gulf states that we need more drilling.

Let's wait until Florida speaks instead of assuming that Crist speaks for Florida.

petegz28
07-08-2010, 05:25 PM
BUT... look what I found on the sidebar:


Florida Governor Calls for Constitutional Ban on Drilling
Published: Thursday, 8 Jul 2010 | 4:48 PM ET


Florida Governor Charlie Crist on Thursday called for a special session of the state legislature to consider a constitutional amendment banning oil drilling off Florida's coast.

Crist said he would call lawmakers into session on July 20 for four days to craft a constitutional amendment to ban oil and gas exploration in state waters.

Drilling in state waters is already banned by statute but putting the ban in the constitution would make it much more difficult to overturn. The proposal would go on the November ballot.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/38154176

HOLY CARAMBA!

There doesn't seem to be a unanimous feeling in the gulf states that we need more drilling.

Yea, I heard about this. And as I understand it, it is already illegal to drill off the coast of Florida. So he is wasting his breath.

|Zach|
07-08-2010, 05:28 PM
Interesting to see this play out.

Taco John
07-08-2010, 05:28 PM
That's an interesting election strategy by Crist. I wonder if it will work for him. He sure puts Rubio in an awkward position, especially considering that offshore drilling is already banned in Florida.

Taco John
07-08-2010, 05:30 PM
For what it's worth, I'd vote against Crist on this basis alone. Not because I'm a big proponent of offshore drilling, but because it shows a flagrant disregard for what a constitution should be. The legislature should be able to handle this issue without needing to box the issue up in a constitution.

ClevelandBronco
07-08-2010, 05:34 PM
For what it's worth, I'd vote against Crist on this basis alone. Not because I'm a big proponent of offshore drilling, but because it shows a flagrant disregard for what a constitution should be. The legislature should be able to handle this issue without needing to box the issue up in a constitution.

Agreed. The Constitution of the State of Colorado has been abused similarly.

mlyonsd
07-08-2010, 06:52 PM
Crist reminds me of Specter. Do anything to stay on the public tax tit.