Louisiana GovernorJindal: Drilling moratorium is 'second manmade disaster'

By Phaedra Friend Troy

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is urging US President Barack Obama to lift the deepwater drilling moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico quickly, calling the moratorium a “second manmade disaster.” 

For comprehensive coverage of the Deepwater Horizon incident, oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and efforts under way to resolve them, visit PennEnergy's Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico special section.

“Our bottom line is that we absolutely want drilling to be done safely, but it shouldn’t take months of federal government committees and meetings. We need effective oversight of this industry,” Gov. Jindal said. “Just because the federal government can’t do their jobs doesn’t mean thousands of Louisianans should lose their jobs. We should not have to choose between our coast and the safe production of energy.”

Gov. Jindal asks not only oil and gas employees, but also others to join him in signing the Gulf Economic Survival Team (GEST) petition to urge President Obama to speed up the inspection process of the drilling rigs and deepwater wells and get the Gulf Coast petroleum industry back to work.

In fact, the emergency website the governor set up to quickly disburse information about the spill reported today that more than 41, 000 people have signed the GEST petition pushing the president to end the six-month drilling moratorium.

“The President’s six-month suspension of activity on 33 permitted deepwater drilling rigs, including 22 deepwater drilling rigs off Louisiana’s coast is a direct hit to our state’s economy that is already suffering from the BP oil spill and its closure of water areas for fishing and our beaches from tourism,” Gov. Jindal said.

According to the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, the state stands to lose anywhere from 3,000 to 6,000 jobs from the moratorium in the first few weeks, and up to 10,000 jobs in a few months. The state of Louisiana could lose more than 20,000 existing and potential new jobs if the moratorium lasts longer than six months.

“This is about more than just direct jobs – this shut down will kill related services and other indirect jobs that support these rigs too,” he added.

One in three jobs in Coastal Louisiana is related to the oil and gas industry, and each drilling rig job in the state supports four other jobs in local communities.

Additionally, Gov. Jindal noted that idling these rigs in the Gulf of Mexico will most likely lead to the rigs being redeployed in other offshore regions – taking the rigs, and the jobs, longer than just the moratorium to return. 

For a comprehensive list of Gulf of Mexico opportunities, as well as oil, natural gas and power careers in the US and abroad, visit PennEnergy Jobs today.

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