Rep. Melancon Responds to New Suspensions on Deepwater Drilling

July 12, 2010

WASHINGTON, DC —U.S Rep. Charlie Melancon (LA-03) issued the following statement responding to new suspensions on deepwater drilling issued by U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today.

“I am deeply disappointed that the Obama Administration is again turning a blind eye to the severe economic harm this moratorium is causing Louisiana’s workers and small businesses,” said Congressman Melancon. “At a time when we are already suffering from the BP oil disaster in the Gulf, this continued suspension will cost our state more jobs and revenue. As long as the Obama Administration leaves undefined the new standards for safety, this shortsighted policy won’t be reversed any time soon. Louisianians have had enough and want to get back to producing energy for our nation.”

Congressman Melancon represents in Congress the areas of coastal Louisiana most directly affected by the oil leak, including Plaquemines, St. Bernard, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. Mary and southern Jefferson Parishes. The Deepwater Horizon platform was located 50 miles off the coast of Louisiana’s Third Congressional District.

The BP oil disaster has impacted three major sectors of Louisiana’s economy – fishing, offshore energy production, and tourism – affecting thousands of workers. To reduce the long-term economic harm of the oil disaster, Congressman Melancon has also been pressing the federal government to end the moratorium on deep-water drilling and clarify new regulations for shallow-water drilling that have created a “de facto” moratorium in the Gulf. The offshore energy industry is a major economic engine for south Louisiana, providing thousands of jobs and supporting numerous locally-based service companies in Congressman Melancon’s Congressional district.

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