Environmental Groups Challenge Shell Drilling Plan
by: Andrew Schneider, June 9, 2011 10:06:00 pm
Today’s filing marks the first case to test the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s permitting process since the Obama administration lifted the moratorium on oil drilling in the Gulf.
David Pettit is an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council, one of four environmental groups that filed the suit.
“Shell’s own calculation of their worst case blowout scenario would be that it would take 128 days to drill a relief well, and during that time, 45 million barrels of oil would spill, which is about nine times what we saw in the Deepwater Horizon matter.”
The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals will take several months to issue a ruling in the case. In the interim, Shell will be allowed to proceed with exploratory drilling.