Monday, July 12, 2010

Gulf Update: Try Try Again- 2nd Moratorium Put in Place; BP to Replace Cap; Oil Rigs Begin Exit; Gulf's Vietnamese Fishermen's Uncertain Future

*BUMPED & UPDATED- 7/12* Fresh after getting overruled by the 5th Circuit Court, the Obama administration and Interior Department issued a second, more comprehensive drilling ban on Monday afternoon.
President Barack Obama had halted drilling in waters deeper than 500 feet (152.4 meters) to give a presidential commission time to study improvements in the safety of offshore operations. U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman cited legal flaws in the original moratorium in a June 22 ruling, and last week a three- judge appeals court panel denied the administration’s request to place a hold on Feldman’s ruling.

The new moratorium will last until Nov. 30, or until Salazar finds that “drilling operations can proceed safely,” according to the statement.

[snip] “When every single resource available is being deployed to combat this one spill, what would we do if there were another?” Representative Edward Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat, said in a statement today. “The only thing worse than one rig at the bottom of the Gulf would be two.”
No, Congressman Markey. The only thing worse than a second sub-sea oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico would be the Obama Administration's response to it.

Exit question, good NANESB! readers- and I've asked myself this a number of times on a number of ancillary issues, but nowhere have I seen it more evident than the Gulf Coast response. If Obama had set out to singlehandedly destroy the economies of the Gulf-coast states, what would he do differently?

Engineers are working on replacing the old cap on the gushing undersea well at the Deepwater Horizon site that was thought to be containing less than half the oil coming out. The new system, along with the use of a containment vessel on the surface will capture an estimated 60,000 to 80,000 barrels per day- as much as twice what the old cap was capturing. The newer system was designed so that it could be assembled and disassembled more quickly in the event of a hurricane or stormy seas. However, the oil will gush unabated in the time it takes between removing the old cap and placing the new cap on.

*The Sea of Syrah is reporting that thanks to the ongoing moratorium, a number of rigs are starting to depart the Gulf of Mexico for elsewhere. Diamond Offshore Drilling [NYSE: DO] announced that their Ocean Endeavor rig will be leaving the Gulf of Mexico and heading for Egyptian waters effective immediately. Some of these rigs might wind up heading off the Brazilian shore, where Petrobras is looking to drill in the offshore Campos Basin. Interestingly, one of President Obama's wealthiest backers during the 2008 Presidential campaign, none other than George Soros himself, is heavily invested in PetroBras as well.

There's also the theory that President Obama is doing what he can to undercut offshore drilling in America in an attempt to have cap and trade passed and increase government subsidies for 'green' energy, part of his pet legislative agenda. Seriously...every time I hear about him touring a factory, it's for electric cars, solar panels or somebody who makes batteries for hybrids.

*The Gulf Coast of Louisiana, Texas, Alabama and Mississippi saw an influx of Vietnamese immigrants after the fall of Saigon- many of them staying on to work as fishermen. Today, there's a community of about 40,000 Vietnamese living along the Gulf Coast- many of them having already worked as fishermen in Vietnam continuing to do so in America.

Almost all of them are out of a job now.
Tom Huynh arrived as a war refugee. Eventually, he found his niche in tuna and escolar fishing, earning enough money to buy a house, help three brothers and sisters through college and become a mini-employment agency for the men of his hometown of Phan Thiet — his five deck hands are from there, and they cut a colorful swath on the water, decked out in matching purple Louisiana State University T-shirts.

Huynh has little to do these days so he drives two hours every few days to maintain Morning Glory, his 75-foot vessel. “Some days I wake up and I think I’m still on the boat,” he says through an interpreter. “I miss what I do. That’s all.”

Similar problems have surfaced in Mississippi, where a coalition has been formed to help nearly 5,000 Vietnamese-Americans, only about 10 percent are now believed to be working. One of the group’s goals is to get financial institutions to defer bank notes and mortgages
Some are hoping that BP will hire them to aid in the cleanup, but others have fallen prey to ambulance chasers who have signed off on paying 50% of any settlements received to attorneys. There are also those newly arrived from Vietnam who are having a difficult time navigating the claims process because of the language barrier.

There can be only one possible explanation for this: President Obama hates Asians, apparently.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Fenway,

    I am beginning to wonder if Obama is a "true believer" in all of this "green energy" stuff.

    Obama to Attend Groundbreaking for LG Chem Plant in U.S.

    LG is investing US$300 million to build the plant which will produce batteries for electric vehicles. First-phase commercial production is scheduled to begin in the first half of 2012, and once completed in 2013 the plant will churn out lithium ion cells for 200,000 hybrid cars annually.

    Experts say that Obama's decision to attend the event stems from the U.S. government's efforts to boost the industry for next-generation vehicles and batteries there. In his first speech to a joint session of Congress last year, Obama said, "New plug-in hybrids roll off our assembly lines, but they will run on batteries made in Korea."