A federal US Court of Appeals in New Orleans rejected Obama’s government to reinstate the moratorium on deepwater drilling ban after the disastrous BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill caused by the explosion of the drilling rig. The administration recently filed a case to challenge a lower court’s decision to put on hold a moratorium on the offshore drilling before the US Court of Appeals. However, the Court of Appeals has rejected it and will allow the drilling activity while looking for other options.
A lot of drilling companies are not amenable to the decision of the US government to stop any further oil drilling just because Deepwater Horizon failed. The recent decision of the US government to put a moratorium on oil drilling offshore was faced with lawsuits from more than a dozen companies operating offshore rigs in the same fashion. The court will also call both parties together on August 30 to finally hear the government’s bid to stop the operation of deepwater drilling until it has finally figured out a better way to enhance the safety of offshore drilling activities.
Diamond Offshore Drilling and Hornbeck Offshore Services are some of the companies which filed a case against the US government to halt the moratorium on oil exploration arguing on the fact that the cessation of the operation harms the companies financially and the country economically. Suing companies have additionally argued that just because one entity failed doesn’t mean that others will follow. Companies with drilling interests are also requesting that a full investigation should be carried out before jumping to a conclusion.
The US government criticized the court’s decision to lift the moratorium and for not considering the government’s technical expertise on the case. The government assumed that further drilling might pose a threat to the lives of people working on other oil rigs and will further jeopardize the economy in general. It is also necessary that further study should be carried out in order to make sure that safety standards are met and work will be done to increase the safety of oil rigs in general.
Judge Jerry Smith, however, issued a challenge to the government as to why such moratorium was hastily done without considering the legality of its action. The drilling companies that were affected also criticized the government for not following proper procedures in suppressing the activity of the companies.
The Obama’s administration handling of the situation is being faced with strong disapproval across the country and abroad. The country is also straining its ties with the UK because of the disaster. The oil spill has not only affected the US economically but ecologically as well due to the dying sea life such as turtles, reefs, and poluted beaches.
BP has set between July 20 and July 27 as a deadline to end the gushing oil in the destroyed rig but still cast a doubt that the timeline was realistic. BP has committed to provide $20 billion on clean up, but many doubt that will be enough. The company currently has exhausted up to $3 billion of its overall budget commitment to date.