NOIA comments on CLEAR Act and BOP ActNews // July 19, 2010
The National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) in the US says that whilst the establishment of a programme to assist the Gulf region recovery is a very worthy intent, the CLEAR Act (HR 3534) will also have some very undesirable results for the American economy.
"In fact, the Act will clear the way for increased energy costs, more reliance on foreign energy sources, and the loss of more American jobs," said NOIA.
NOIA is disappointed by the House Natural Resources Committee’s rejection of the amendment by Representative Bill Cassidy to end the drilling moratorium – a moratorium which has twice been rejected by the courts and is costing thousands of jobs In the Gulf of Mexico.
"The Gulf spill certainly demands that tough questions be asked and new policies and standards be considered, but this legislation goes well beyond a response to the spill and capriciously raises costs on domestic offshore production. Thoughtful legislative responses to the Gulf spill must consider the economic impact of the oil and gas industry in the Gulf and on the national economy as a whole. On those counts, this bill falls short," said NOIA.
"There are substantial areas where almost all interested parties have agreement in providing increased safety for offshore exploration activities. However, instead of gathering those areas and moving forward, this bill overreaches and is attempting to provide solutions with unintended consequences."
"Now is the time for pragmatic, calm, rationale debate on the best ways to prevent a similar tragedy from ever happening again, and continuing to allow offshore energy development to be a critical component of our national energy portfolio."
"Notably, the House Natural Resources Committee did adopt, by a bipartisan vote, an amendment by Congressman Bill Cassidy to establish a bipartisan, Congressionally-appointed Commission to investigate the causes of the Gulf tragedy, incorporate findings of other such investigations, and make policy recommendations going forward."
"If Congress must act, NOIA recommends they pass this amendment."
However, we note, that coming on the heels of an identical amendment being adopted by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, this action calls attention to the impartiality of the Presidential Commission.