Obama administration to unveil 5-year offshore drilling plan
"The Obama administration is set today to unveil a plan for selling offshore drilling leases over the next five years that focuses on exploration in the Gulf of Mexico."
Interior Plan Includes More Gulf, Alaska Leases
"Specifically, those areas include five annual lease sales to begin in the fall of 2012 in the western Gulf of Mexico; five annual lease sales beginning in the spring of 2013 in the central Gulf; and two lease sales in 2014 and 2016 in the eastern Gulf that are not under congressional moratorium. Off the coast of Alaska, the Interior proposal calls for holding one lease sale in 2015 in the Beaufort Sea, one lease sale in 2016 in the Chukchi Sea, and one special-interest sale in the Cook Inlet."
U.S. Plans Lease Sales in Gulf of Mexico, Offshore Alaska
"President Barack Obama's administration plans 15 offshore oil-lease sales from 2012 to 2017, keeping the Atlantic and Pacific seaboards off-limits for drilling."
Evidence shows Gulf oil spill caused widespread ecological damage
"Since the blown oil well spewed 186 million to 227 million gallons of crude into the Gulf last year, several species of fish have developed skin ulcers in what appears to be greater-than-normal numbers. Hundreds of dolphins — nearly 500 so far — have washed ashore dead, and fewer large migratory animals, such as whales sharks, have returned to their normal feeding grounds. Meanwhile, layers of dead organic matter mixed with traces of oil remain on the ocean floor. Weathered crude also persists in marshes — some of it still thick, some hardly detectable, but harmful to fish."
Oil-spill workers sought for study
"Federal researchers will be in Terrebonne Parish [LA] on Wednesday, looking for cleanup workers willing to participate in a $17.8 million study of long-term health effects from last year's Gulf of Mexico oil spill. They want to interview more than 50,000 cleanup workers in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida, and have enrolled 5,000 since February. About 20,000 will be chosen for an in-home interview and periodic follow-ups over at least five years."
"Spanish oil giant Repsol could begin drilling in late December or early January at a spot along the northern shore of Cuba about 90 miles from Key West. From there, the Gulf Stream could pick up any oil spill and carry it perilously close or even into mangrove islands and onto beaches in the Florida Keys, South Florida and up the U.S. eastern coastline."
ALTERNATIVES TO OIL
Here Comes the Sun
"We are, or at least we should be, on the cusp of an energy transformation, driven by the rapidly falling cost of solar power. That's right, solar power. "