President Obama Bans Offshore Drilling in Arctic and Parts of Atlantic


#1

even I have to say how disappointed I am that Obama would rather pander to environmentalists (who can’t reelect him) and cuts off this Nation’s energy legs at its knees. We could get energy from the Arctic safely and responsibly but Shell’s miserable debacle in 2012 was so fraught with mistakes that no one believes it can be done anymore.

[B]President Obama Bans Offshore Drilling in Arctic and Parts of Atlantic
[/B]

December 20, 2016 By Valerie Volcovici and Timothy Gardner

WASHINGTON, Dec 20 (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday permanently banned new oil and gas drilling in federal waters in the Atlantic and Arctic Oceans, in one of his last environmental pushes before he leaves office next month.

In protecting the waters, Obama used a 1950s-era law called the Outer Continental Shelf Act that allows presidents to limit areas from mineral leasing and drilling. Environmental groups said Obama’s use of the law meant the incoming administration of Republican President-elect Donald Trump could not simply reverse the action but would have to fight it in the courts.

The ban affects federal waters off Alaska in the Chukchi Sea and most of the Beaufort Sea and in the Atlantic from New England to Chesapeake Bay.

The move came in a joint announcement by Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to launch “actions ensuring a strong, sustainable and viable Arctic economy and ecosystem.”

Obama said in a statement on Tuesday that the joint actions “reflect the scientific assessment that, even with the high safety standards that both our countries have put in place, the risks of an oil spill in this region are significant and our ability to clean up from a spill in the region’s harsh conditions is limited.”

Canada will designate all Arctic Canadian waters as indefinitely off limits to future offshore Arctic oil and gas licensing, to be reviewed every five years through a climate and marine science-based life-cycle assessment.

The law under which Obama is acting enables a president to withdraw certain areas from leasing or drilling “for any public purpose,” such as to limit the impacts of climate change, according to a legal briefing by the Natural Resources Defense Council and Earth Justice.

Under that law, a president is not authorized to “undo” a previous withdrawal, making it more difficult for Trump to target without a lawsuit.

“No president has ever tried to undo a permanent withdrawal of an ocean area from leasing eligibility,” said Niel Lawrence, Alaska director and attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

The provision has been used by six presidents from both parties over the past 65 years, including to withdraw as much as several hundred million acres at a time, he said.

The American Petroleum Institute oil industry group disagreed about the permanence of the ban and said Trump could likely use a presidential memorandum to lift the ban.

“We are hopeful the incoming administration will reverse this decision as the nation continues to need a robust strategy for developing offshore and onshore energy,” said Erik Milito, API’s upstream director.

ARCTIC DRILLING EXPENSIVE, RISKY

Even if Trump attempts to battle the move, few energy companies have expressed a desire to drill anytime soon off the coasts thanks to abundant cheap shale oil in North Dakota and Texas.

Exploratory drilling in the Arctic is expensive and risky. Shell Oil ended its quest to explore in harsh Arctic waters in 2015, after a vessel it was using suffered a gash and environmentalists had uncovered a law that limited its drilling.

In 2015, just 0.1 percent of U.S. federal offshore crude production came from the Arctic. At current oil prices, significant production in the Arctic will not occur, according to a Department of Interior analysis.

On the Atlantic coast, local groups have opposed offshore drilling and would fight the Trump administration’s attempts to open it up.

“The people of the Atlantic coast have refused to allow their way of life to be compromised,” said Jacqueline Savitz, senior vice president of Florida-based ocean conservancy group Oceana.

She said the Obama administration move to protect the Atlantic coast was a “smart business decision” since it would protect the lucrative tourism and fishing industries of East Coast communities.

all the same, when we need that oil and gas bad enough it will still be there whether that is in 2026 or 2036 or 2046…the Shell clown circus will have long been forgotten and when Americans hear we have billions of barrels of oil up there to feed our starving economy they will be screaming very loudly that we need to get it and get it now. The problem for me is that I’ll be much too old to be part of any big show up north when it happens however I will remember 2012 and Shell’s PHUCKING IDIOCY much too clearly. I wonder if gCaptain will still be around then so I can rant about it all over again?

.


#2

Nothing surprising. He’s retiring to DC so he’ll stick close to the money. I’m sure he’s working his model on the Clinton Foundation’s short-comings…


#3

I,for one, am glad of the permanent ban. Can we have just one place in the country that we haven’t turned into a trash heap? The idea that oil spills can be cleaned up in an environment that is mostly below freezing, and is filled with pack ice for much of the year, is laughable. Well blow-outs are inevitable. We plan against them and they will still eventually happen. For what? To increase world oil supply 50%? 20%? 5%? Probably more like a fraction of 1%. I mean right now we must be having a shortage of oil, right? All the OSVs are stacked up in the bayous because we’re running out of oil?


#4

[QUOTE=freighterman;193635]I,for one, am glad of the permanent ban. Can we have just one place in the country that we haven’t turned into a trash heap? The idea that oil spills can be cleaned up in an environment that is mostly below freezing, and is filled with pack ice for much of the year, is laughable. Well blow-outs are inevitable. We plan against them and they will still eventually happen. For what? To increase world oil supply 50%? 20%? 5%? Probably more like a fraction of 1%. I mean right now we must be having a shortage of oil, right? All the OSVs are stacked up in the bayous because we’re running out of oil?[/QUOTE]

that is today but the world of oil might look very different in 10years especially if the the good ol’ USofA phucks the pooch and gets itself into a place where the rest of the world doesn’t want to sell us “THEIR” oil at which point we will need every drop we can get out of our own reserves or will need to seize someone else’s militarily (don’t discount this last one…it is one of the reasons we keep such a massive military in the first place…to guarantee supply)

still if we can get all the oil we need from fraq’ing in Oklahoma, then fine. Let them have the polluted groundwater and man made earthquakes


#5

We will need to sell our oil in order to get out of our current fiscal predicament. There is no other way.


#6

[QUOTE=lm1883;193637]We will need to sell our oil in order to get out of our current fiscal predicament. There is no other way.[/QUOTE]
Then frack the hell out of the Midwest. Apparently there is a lack of jobs there. The locals can frack it,refine it, and drive the trucks, trains and barges to ship it wherever. On the back-haul they can bring in fresh drinking water to replace the groundwater they trash. Boom! Right there, the Circle of Life.


#7

We all need to shoulder the burden. As far as jobs go, I hear things are not great for members of this forum. Offshore drilling seems to help them out.

As far as Midwestern fresh water, there’s plenty, in fact so much it’s a full time job to tell our friends on the west coast that they can’t have it.


#8

While America and Canada is banning oil & Gas exploration in the Arctic, Russia is forging ahead within their zone of the Arctic: https://thebarentsobserver.com/en/industry-and-energy/2016/09/offshore-arctic-production-300

With the improved relationship expected between Russia and USA there are new opportunities for US firms: https://thebarentsobserver.com/en/industry-and-energy/2017/01/offshore-arctic-platform-prirazlomnaya-close-down-3-months

Norway’s first oil producer in the Arctic is not doing so well: http://www.offshoreenergytoday.com/enis-goliat-field-shut-down-after-power-outage/


#9

Trump’s idea of opening the Arctic, Atlantic and Pacific coasts of USA to oil drilling and exploitation may not be so easy to implement, according to this article in ArcticNow today: https://www.arcticnow.com/business/energy/2017/07/06/the-two-problems-with-trumps-offshore-drilling-push/