Back at the end of May, interior secretary Ken Salazar laid out the specific rules for deep water drills that have to be met in order for the moratorium to be lifted.
“We will be requiring certification of all blow out preventers or floating drilling operations, stronger well control, well prevention and intervention procedures, help for inspections for deep water drilling operations, and expanded safety and training programs for rig workers,” says Salazar.
A judge ruled last week that the moratorium cannot be upheld. The government has appealed to another court. KRMS reporter Ashley Teague participated in a conference call with Missouri’s Junior Senator discussing the moratorium. Teague says Senator Claire McCaskill wanted to clarify.
‘Senator Clair McCaskill says there needs to be some clarification on what the moratorium in the Gulf means. She says people are confused on what type of drilling the government stopped.’
“But keep in mind, this moratorium was not for operating wells. It wasn’t as if they’d quit pumping oil in the Gulf. This moratorium is only for deep water exploration,” says McCaskill.
‘Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says the moratorium applies only to wells that are in waters at a depth above 500 feet. McCaskill says the government can’t just simply do nothing.’
“I come down on the side of, we’ve got to figure this out about deep water exploration. We cannot allow it to go forward until we are confident that we have the kind of safety mechanisms in place that would never allow this to happen again. Can you imagine if one of these explorations begin next week or tomorrow and they had a blow out? Can you imagine the impact that would have?”