Green Room

Another Court Orders Obama to Drill or Get Off the Pot

posted at 12:30 pm on February 18, 2011 by

The Obama administration already found itself in hot water once this year over its drilling permitorium when a federal judge effectively found them in contempt of court on the issue. Now, only a few weeks later, the judicial branch is back in action, demanding that Obama’s EPA get back to the business of approving drilling permits or demonstrate why they can not.

Court Orders U.S. to Decide on Drilling

WASHINGTON—A federal judge ordered the Obama administration to decide within 30 days whether to grant a set of five permits for deep-water drilling projects in the Gulf of Mexico, saying the administration’s inaction on the requests is “increasingly inexcusable.”

The order, by Judge Martin Feldman of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, ratcheted up the pressure on the administration, which last fall lifted a months-long moratorium on deepwater drilling but has yet to grant any permits to drill new oil or natural-gas wells at depths greater than 500 feet.

The ruling came on the same day a consortium of large oil companies said it had fulfilled a key demand of the administration: that the industry set up a response system to quickly shut a gushing underwater well, minimizing the risk of another accident like the one last April at a BP PLC well in the Gulf of Mexico.

Energy companies have been expending billions of dollars jumping through every hoop the EPA sets in front of them in their efforts to get back to work. It seems, at long last, that they are forced to seek a judicial remedy to the matter. This case is taking place in Louisiana, one of the states hardest hit by the permitorium, so don’t expect a lot of public sympathy for the President to emerge.

With thirty days to decide, and likely a number of legal tricks up their sleeves to delay further, we still may not be close to the end of the road on this one. The real question is how many more rigs will finish pulling up stakes and heading for foreign waters before the permits begin to be issued again? And how long will it take to get them back here and back to work once that happens? By that time the job losses and total economic impact will have left a sour taste in the mouths of most residents, both for the EPA as an agency and for the President’s silent participation in this scheme.

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It seems bho and team have no intentions at all of obeying the law this judge/any judge ordered them to do. There has to be some way of hauling them in contempt of court.
L

letget on February 18, 2011 at 1:07 PM

You know what’s really funny about this? I’ve got libtards telling me left-and-right that Judge Vinson’s Obamacare ruling isn’t binding because “the score is 2-2, and the Supreme Court hasn’t weighed in on it yet,” and yet Obama hasn’t done bupkis now that he’s been found in contempt and has court orders from more than one court with no contrary opinions to be found.

gryphon202 on February 18, 2011 at 1:17 PM

Expect BarryO and his minions at the EPA to rename ‘oil’ Toxic Waste, or somesuch nomenclature in order to reclassify it thereby requiring more environemental impact studies lasting years.

As you said, more tricks up their sleeves.

Meanwhile, back on dry land, many of the Gulf drillers that haven’t moved to foreign waters are poking holes in the ground Stateside in order to maintain production to local refineries, especially considering the high price per barrel. Although regulated, surface drilling has had a longer history to evolve safely and cleanly. This is the only good news coming out of this problem.

Robert17 on February 18, 2011 at 2:10 PM

Next week I am going offshore to a BP platform, but only for maintenance purposes. We have to go out there to keep everything from rusting and freezing up from inactivity. I don’t know when I will be going out to do a well completion or tie-in, but it sure is hurting me financially. I have been offshore only once for less than two weeks since I was involved in the new BOP installation on the Macondo #1 back in September.

DAT60A3 on February 18, 2011 at 10:39 PM

@gryphon,

You know, it matters not at all that there are 2 judges that did not rule against the Obama administration, it isn’t a voting process. What matters is that ONE judge deemed it unconstitutional. You could have 8 federal judges that ruled is constitutional and 1 judge that ruled it not and the “not” means that everything (is supposed to) comes to a halt.

Right now, the Obama administration is behaving unconstitutionally by continuing with implementation, such as hiring IRS agents, in preparation.

Listen to some of Mark Levin’s shows (free, full episodes at marklevinshow.com –> Audio) from last week and he’ll explain it to you. He’s the real constitutional expert/lawyer, not DohBama.

Geministorm on February 20, 2011 at 2:32 AM

So, the governments Minerals Lands Leasing Act prescribes the share or royalty rate as 1/8 the value of production; for offshore leases, the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act prescribes the royalty rate as 1/6 the value of production. Do the math to determine why it is O’s interest to keep royalty dollars from flowing into the treasury. Keep in mind that if it is in O’s interest, his interest is in milking the taxpayer. He is fabricating a need to milk the taxpayer.

ericdijon on February 20, 2011 at 6:44 PM