MMS Holds Hearing in California on Proposed 5-Year OCS Leasing Program
The Minerals Management Service is holding a hearing in San Francisco today on the proposed draft program for the 2010-2015 Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Leasing Program. An overflow crowd has packed an auditorium on UCSF Mission Bay campus to hear statements from lawmakers, policy experts, and activists.
Sen. Barbara Boxer and California Lt. Gov. John Garamendi kicked off the hearing expressing their staunch opposition to any form of drilling. Boxer's commentary consisted almost entirely of appeals to emotion and irrationality. Both Boxer and Garamendi focused heavily on the Santa Barbara oil spill of 1969.
What Boxer and Garamendi failed to mention is that new technologies and techniques have been developed in the decades since that, had they been employed in '69, would have prevented that catastrophe. They also failed to mention, conveniently enough, that less than 1% of oil found in ocean waters is due to oil exploration. In fact, most oil found in the water, 62% to be specific, is the result of natural seepage from tectonic plates.
John Adams once said that "facts are stubborn things." Boxer and Garamendi get around this by simply ignoring them.
For frequent updates on the hearing throughout the day, follow ATR's California State Affairs Manager on twitter: @patrickmgleason.
ATR has submitted testimony in favor of expanding offshore drilling as way to provide relief to overlyburdened Golden State taxpayers. Scroll down to read ATR's testimony: