US Approves Plan to Open Atlantic to Oil Reserve Surveys

Posted by Eric Haun
Friday, July 18, 2014

The Obama administration on Friday approved a plan that would allow companies to assess oil resources off the Atlantic Coast, angering environmental groups that worried the plan will harm marine life and open the door to offshore drilling.

First outlined by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management in February, the plan lays out the mitigation measures companies would be required to undertake before conducting seismic testing to gauge the oil reserves in the Atlantic Ocean.

"We are taking every step we think is reasonable to take to try and put those protections in place, while still allowing surveys to occur," Acting BOEM Director Walter Cruickshank said on a press call.

BOEM emphasized that the plan does not authorize any particular seismic surveys and that companies would still have to apply for site-specific permits.

Several companies have pending applications to assess the Atlantic oil reserves. Cruickshank said surveys could begin early next year.

Green groups slammed the plan, which they said did not offer enough protection for fisheries and marine mammals and would lead to more oil and gas production. They are concerned that the underwater blasts of compressed air could wreak havoc.

"The use of seismic airguns is the first step to expanding dirty and dangerous offshore drilling to the Atlantic Ocean," Oceana campaign director Claire Douglass said in a statement.

While a decades-old ban on drilling in the Atlantic was lifted by Congress in 2008, the Obama administration canceled a planned lease sale off the Virginia coast after the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

The administration has begun to craft the next five-year U.S. offshore oil and gas leasing plan, which will run from 2017 to 2022.

The BOEM said the seismic testing framework does not mean a decision has been made on whether the Atlantic will be included in the new five-year plan.

(Reporting by Ayesha Rascoe; editing by Matthew Lewis)

Maritime Reporter February 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Offshore

Hercules Offshore Shares Fall 33%

Drilling contractor Hercules Offshore Inc's shares fell as much as 33 percent to a record low on Friday, a day after Deutsche Bank cut its price target on the company's stock to $0.

Brightoil Reports Steady Growth in Interim Results

Brightoil Petroleum (Holdings) Limited announced its interim results for the six months ended December 31, 2014, reporting steady growth over the period.   During the period,

Mexico Approves 5 Shallow Water Areas in Round One Oil Tender

Mexico has approved the terms for five shallow water areas containing around 355 million barrels of oil equivalent as part of its Round One tender to open up the country's oil fields,

Energy

GasLog Post 4Q 2014 Results

GasLog Ltd. and its subsidiaries an international owner, operator and manager of liquefied natural gas carriers, today reported its unaudited financial results for the quarter ended December 31,

Petrobras Downgrade Shakes Market

Moody's shocked bond investors this week with a surprise two-notch downgrade that put Brazilian oil company Petrobras in junk territory. The move was seen by some investors as overly assertive,

Brightoil Reports Steady Growth in Interim Results

Brightoil Petroleum (Holdings) Limited announced its interim results for the six months ended December 31, 2014, reporting steady growth over the period.   During the period,

News

Spanish Boat Wins Leg of Ocean Race

Spanish boat Mapfre has claimed victory in the Auckland leg of the of the round-the-world Volvo Ocean Race from Sanya, China, to Auckland.   The Alicante-based

China's Maritime Advances Worry US

The Director of U.S. National Intelligence, James Clapper, has expressed his concern at the progress of China in maritime zones it shares with its neighbors, accused

British Queen to Name New Ship

Queen Elizabeth II will christen P&O Cruises’ new flagship Britannia in Southampton, England, on March 10. She will be accompanied by her husband, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.

Government Update

Indian Ports to Set Sail on Corporatization

Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in Union Budget 2015 that government-run ports in India will be encouraged to corporatize and become companies under the Companies Act.

Crimea Nationalizes Cargo Port in Kerch

The Crimean State Council nationalized the Kerch-based cargo port Kamysh-Burun belonging to the Ukrainian financial-industrial group Altcom.   According to Crimean Parliament,

LA, Long Beach Ports Cooperation Approved

Federal regulators approve expanded working pact for Port of Long Beach and Port of Los Angeles to cooperate on congestion relief   The ports of Long Beach and

Offshore Energy

Hercules Offshore Shares Fall 33%

Drilling contractor Hercules Offshore Inc's shares fell as much as 33 percent to a record low on Friday, a day after Deutsche Bank cut its price target on the company's stock to $0.

Brightoil Reports Steady Growth in Interim Results

Brightoil Petroleum (Holdings) Limited announced its interim results for the six months ended December 31, 2014, reporting steady growth over the period.   During the period,

Mexico Approves 5 Shallow Water Areas in Round One Oil Tender

Mexico has approved the terms for five shallow water areas containing around 355 million barrels of oil equivalent as part of its Round One tender to open up the country's oil fields,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Standards Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.3193 sec (3 req/sec)