Blowout Containment Part of Drilling Permit Snag

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Atlanta, GA (AP) - The head of the agency that oversees offshore
drilling says deepwater permits in the Gulf of Mexico have been withheld largely because the industry is unable to prove it could contain another major blowout at the bottom of the sea.

Michael Bromwich, director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, made the disclosure in a
letter he sent late Friday to executives at Exxon Mobil, Chevron and Helix Energy Solutions Group. Bromwich was asking the companies
when the containment system they and others are working on will be

Drilling was suspended last year when the administration imposed
a months long moratorium following the BP spill. The ban was lifted
in October, but drilling has not yet resumed in waters deeper than
500 feet in the Gulf.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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