WASHINGTON (May 5, 2011) — The House today took the first step toward mandating a dramatic increase in offshore drilling while making oversight of drilling weaker than it was before last year’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster. The House voted to approve an expansion of drilling even though experts agree more drilling won’t noticeably affect gas prices.
Frances Beinecke, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council and a former member of the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling, made the following statement:
“It’s astounding enough that the House would even consider expanding offshore drilling before implementing any of the recommended safeguards to prevent another disaster like the BP Deepwater Horizon spill. But doing so under the false premise that more drilling will somehow help consumers struggling with high gas prices today is simply misleading and wrong.
“More drilling only means more profits for the oil industry. Instead of continuing to vote for policies that only increase our dependence on oil, members of Congress should instead be voting to reduce taxpayer subsidies to oil companies, which have all the money they need without assistance from taxpayers.”