From Doc Hastings’s staff on the House Natural Resources Committee. Do click on the link for the maps, which show exactly how far this is actually a reversal of policy that the environmentalist outrage merely covered up.
Facts & Maps on Obama Administration’s Plan to Lock Up the OCS
President Obama did not open new lands to offshore drilling – all of these areas were already open for drilling once Congress and President Bush lifted the moratorium in 2008. Instead, President Obama yesterday announced what areas he would CLOSE to offshore drilling (see maps).
Under the President’s Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) plan, over 360 million acres are now under a new “Obama Moratorium” that blocks American energy production. This represents nearly 60% of the OCS in the Lower 48 States.
In total, the new Obama OCS plan puts 13.14 billion barrels of oil and 41.49 trillion cubic feet of natural gas under lock and key.
The plan includes only two actual lease sales – Virginia and Cook Inlet –both are delayed from 2011 to 2012.
The Administration will only study the other areas (Mid-Atlantic, Southern Atlantic, Chukchi and Beaufort Sea). It has NOT actually planned lease sales for these areas. There is no guarantee that drilling will ever occur there.
Drilling in a small portion of the Eastern Gulf of Mexico can only happen if Congress lifts the ban that is in place until 2022. The Administration has not sent proposed language to make this change to Congress yet.
The entire Pacific Coast is now off limits. The Pacific Coast alone holds an estimated 10.5 billion barrels of oil—almost 75 percent of the total amount available off the U.S. coastline in former moratoria areas – and 18 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
The Eastern Gulf of Mexico mileage restrictions specifically exclude the “Destin Dome” area. This area contains enough natural gas to supply gas to a million American families for 30 years. It is located close to infrastructure and could be quickly developed, creating jobs and wealth for the American people.