Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Obama’s offshore rules a rig too far for oil industry

When Washington announced in October that it was cancelling auctions for drilling rights in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas for at least two years, the argument made by Sally Jewell, the interior secretary, was an economic one. Citing factors like the continued tumble in the price of oil and the announcement by Shell, an Anglo-Dutch firm, the previous month that it was giving up drilling in the Chukchi Sea after spending $7 billion in a seven-year search that turned up dry, she argued that the timing was simply wrong to offer the licences. “It does not make sense to prepare for lease sales in the Arctic,” Ms Jewell said at the time. Now that Washington has again turned its attention towards Arctic drilling, this time by issuing, last week, a set of regulations aimed at making it safer to drill, the industry is replying with economic arguments of its own: that the additional $2 billion it will cost firms to live up the rules over the next decade may mean firms give up the Arctic entirely...more

No comments: