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Obama to Reopen Drilling in Gulf Shallows

Deep water drilling moratorium to stay put
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Suggested by Disillusioned
Posted Jun 8, 2010 4:34 AM CDT
Obama to Reopen Drilling in Gulf Shallows
The Discoverer Deep Seas drill ship sits off the coast of Louisiana as Chevron drills for oil in the Gulf of Mexico.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

(Newser) – The government's almost ready to release new safety standards that will allow companies to start searching for oil and gas in the Gulf of Mexico again, President Obama said yesterday. Obama was seeking to reassure Gulf residents worried that the moratorium introduced after the Deepwater Horizon will destroy thousands of jobs, the Wall Street Journal reports.

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The White House says it supports lifting the $75 million cap on liability damages for offshore drilling, a move industry groups say will make it too hard for smaller companies to drill offshore. The administration isn't planning to reconsider its 6-month moratorium on new deep-water wells. "A repeat of the BP Deepwater Horizon spill would have grave economic consequences for regional commerce and do further damage to the environment," the White House said in a statement yesterday. (Read more Obama offshore drilling stories.)

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