BP applies for permit to resume deep water oil drilling
British Petroleum has reportedly filed an application for a new offshore oil drilling site, about a year after the oil rig disaster and oil spill the company was involved in. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

British Petroleum, or BP, has filed an application to resume drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico. BP became one of the most reviled companies in the world after the oil explosion in April of 2010 and the resulting oil spill, which is still unresolved. BP still has to have its application approved to start drilling.

Government denies any deal with British Petroleum

An American government official has denied that the U.S. government has reached any agreement with British Petroleum to allow the company to resume deep water drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico, according to Reuters. BP was rumored to have reached a deal with the Department of Interior, granting concessions in order to be granted a permit, according to MSNBC, but Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar shot the rumors down in a recent press conference. When asked if there was a deal, Salazar said that no such deal existed and “nor would there be.” Salazar stressed BP will be treated like any other company and will be granted a permit if the plans for the new drilling site meet proper guidelines.

Rumor mill churning

The rumors of a deal being reached began when the news was leaked in London that BP had filed for a permit to drill a new oil well. It was first disclosed in the Sunday Times of London, according to Bloomberg, though the sources were completely anonymous. A moratorium on all offshore drilling was initiated by the Obama administration in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion on April 21, 2010. However, the ban on shallow water drilling — or wells 500 feet or less –was lifted within a month of the incident that claimed the lives of 11 oil rig workers. The effects of the oil spill are still being determined.

Rise in oil drilling likely

President Obama said that he wants to reduce U.S. oil imports by a third in the next decade, which means that oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and other areas will have to increase. Alternative fuels simply are not advanced enough yet to not ramp up domestic oil production. The good news is that oil prices and gas prices will start to decrease to some extent once more barrels of oil start coming in from the Gulf, as that will mean a more stable supply. However, that also means that it may be just a matter of time before a drilling company cuts corners with safety for the sake of profits and history repeats itself.


Reuters: http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/04/04/us-bp-salazar-idUSTRE73337820110404

MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42400389/ns/us_news-environment/

Bloomberg: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-04-04/bp-said-to-have-applied-to-drill-one-deep-water-well-in-gulf.htm

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