More Oil Trouble in the Gulf of Mexico

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Kierán Suckling, executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity, lets us know that a shallow-water well is also leaking in the Gulf of Mexico—and that shallow-water drilling has its share of problems:

On May 6, 2010, the U.S. Department of the Interior placed a partial moratorium on shallow and deepwater drilling in response to the April 20, 2010 explosion of BP’s Deepwater Horizon drilling project. Interior defines “shallow-water drilling” as occurring in less than 500 feet of water and “deepwater drilling” as that which occurs in greater than 500 feet of water.

The moratorium was to last 30 days while Interior conducted a drilling safety review. On May, 28, 2010, the deepwater moratorium was expanded with great fanfare, and the shallow-water moratorium was quietly lifted without comment or explanation from Interior. Despite the announced 30-day safety review period, the Interior Department has produced any report or finding to justify its apparent conclusion that shallow-water drilling is safe.

Today it was revealed that Taylor Energy Company LLC’s shallow-water drilling operation, using Diamond Offshore’s Ocean Sarasota oil rig, has been leaking oil since at least April 30, 2010. That is just 10 days after the Deepwater Horizon explosion. Taylor Energy has multiple drilling