The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

Obama Administration Defends Its Gulf Oil Spill Response

Last updated: 07/31/2020 08:00 | 08/23/2010 05:56
Elisa Mueller

Days after it emerged that the Obama administration estimated a moratorium on deepwater oil and natural gas drilling would cost 23,000 jobs and amid criticism from scientists that it is offering too-rosy assessments of the spill’s aftermath, key officials have launched a defense of the administration’s actions.

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar penned an op-ed in the Houston Chronicle in which he said the administration has “launched the most aggressive, advanced and swift offshore drilling reforms ever implemented.”

According to the op-ed:

[I]n the deep-water areas, where the Deepwater Horizon blowout occurred, it is necessary and appropriate to require operators to demonstrate improved safety, blowout containment and spill response practices before allowing drilling to continue.

To be sure, both the deep-water drilling moratorium and the reforms we are implementing have drawn fire from the same powerful interests who have, over the last two decades, systematically fought regulation and oversight of offshore drilling operations.

But make no mistake: Our country needs these reforms and we will deliver them. We will raise the bar for deep-water drilling. We will hold the industry accountable. And we will build the strongest and safest offshore energy development program in the world. Salazar is secretary of the Interior.

Thad Allen, the national incident commander in the Gulf, also wrote an op-ed today. Allen, in The Washington Post, pats the administration on the back for what he calls “an unprecedented response” to the spill.

No one is claiming victory or “mission accomplished” at this point, nor should we. We should, however, recognize what has been done.

Elisa Mueller | Elisa Mueller was born in Kansas City, Missouri, to a mother who taught reading and a father who taught film. As a result, she spent an excessive amount of her childhood reading books and watching movies. She went to the University of Kansas for college, where she earned bachelor's degrees in English and journalism. She moved to New York City and worked for Entertainment Weekly magazine for ten years, visiting film sets all over the world.


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