Washington, DC – With the mid-term elections just over two weeks away, the Obama Administration today decided to lift the nearly 6-month ban on responsible offshore energy exploration, according an announcement Secretary Salazar made at a press conference this afternoon. Thomas J. Pyle, president of the Institute for Energy Research, issued the following statement, challenging the Interior Department to be straight with the America people on the de facto ban that remains in place:
“Today’s announcement is about politics and headlines, not getting folks back to work and increasing domestic energy exploration and production in the United States. The moratorium may very well be a thing of the past, but a permitorium remains the guiding policy of this Administration.
“What was announced today will result in no change in domestic energy production in the Gulf of Mexico until Interior Secretary Salazar begins to issue permits once again. In the meantime, thousands of Gulf coast families will continue to be out of work. It can’t be explained any other way.”