WASHINGTON - The U.S. Interior Department issued a new moratorium order Monday afternoon in a second effort to block deepwater oil and natural gas projects. The ban will be in effect through November 30, 2010, or until Interior Secretary Ken Salazar determines that deepwater drilling operations can proceed safely.
A previous six-month ban issued in the wake of the Gulf oil disaster was thrown out by a federal judge in New Orleans. Last week, a federal appeals panel rejected the government's request to overturn the lower court judge's decision.
LCV President Gene Karpinski released the following statement on the announcement:
“We applaud President Obama’s renewed commitment to protecting the Gulf Coast by issuing a temporary ban on offshore drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. This moratorium is an important precaution as millions of gallons of oil continue to spill into the Gulf from the BP leak.
We know what caused this disaster and now it’s time to move towards what we know can be the solution: reducing our dangerous dependence on oil by transitioning the U.S. to a clean energy economy. We call on the administration to work with the Senate to pass comprehensive energy and climate legislation that will create clean energy jobs and make sure we never witness an environmental disaster like this again.”
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