Boustany Urges Responsible Offshore Energy Production to Continue in Letter to Secretary Salazar and at Committee Hearing

June 11, 2010

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Charles W. Boustany, Jr., (R-Southwest Louisiana), today urged members of the House Natural Resources Committee to press the Administration to allow responsible offshore energy production to meet America’s energy needs while protecting thousands of Louisiana jobs that hang in the balance.

“As the people of Louisiana struggle to clean up our coast, many families face the loss of income and their jobs because of the deep water drilling moratorium,” said Boustany. “Responsible energy production is essential to keep America moving forward and to the economy of the Gulf Coast region. In the days following the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon, safety efforts were expanded on the existing rigs to prevent another disaster. The Administration needs to lift the moratorium and allow Louisiana workers to return to their jobs to produce the energy America needs.”

Boustany attended a hearing of the House Natural Resources Insular Affairs, Oceans and Wildlife Subcommittee regarding the Gulf Coast Oil Spill. Boustany joined fellow Louisiana Representatives Anh “Joseph” Cao, Bill Cassidy and John Fleming at the hearing.

Boustany also sent a letter to Secretary Ken Salazar demanding the Deepwater Horizon Commission be fully appointed and meet immediately. Delaying the Commission prolongs the implementation of safety guidelines and an end to the moratorium on deep water energy production. As 33 deepwater rigs sit idle, thousands of Louisiana workers face an uncertain future. In part, Boustany wrote:

“I am committed to working with the Administration to ensure the jobs of thousands of Louisiana workers are not destroyed by the current drilling moratorium.

“I remain concerned your willingness to reconsider the drilling ban is contingent on the findings of the President’s Commission. Almost a month after the President made his announcement, the Commission has yet to be fully appointed and work has not begun. This slow pace is unacceptable. I request the President fully appoint the Commission immediately and direct it to begin its work without further delay. The Commission is tasked with fully investigating all aspects of the Deepwater Horizon incident. However, its immediate task should be to develop a set of safety recommendations that will allow the drilling ban to be lifted immediately – not in months.”

A copy of the letter is here.

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