Judge to Rule on 6 Month Drilling Moratorium

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by boedicca, Jun 21, 2010.

  1. boedicca
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    boedicca Uppity Water Nymph Supporting Member

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    This is an interesting one to watch - and a test to see if we are still a nation of the Rule of Law or one of the Power of Thuggery.

    U.S. District Court Judge Martin Feldman said he will decide whether to grant an injunction to stop U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar's six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico by noon on Wednesday - possibly by noon on Tuesday.
    gulf_oil_nasa_satellite.JPGView full sizeNASA, The Associated PressThis satellite image provided by NASA shows oil rom the Deepwater Horizon rig visible on the surface of the Gulf of Mexico on Friday.

    The case pits the Obama administration's authority to regulate an industry and protect public safety and the environment in the face of one of the world's worst oil rig disasters ever against the offshore oil industry's rights for due process and individual treatment.

    Feldman, who was appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1983, has called the case by Hornbeck Offshore Services LLC and other marine service and shipyard companies against the Interior Department a matter "of national significance" and that the case will proceed on a "highly expedited basis."

    A hearing on the proposed injunction was in such demand Monday morning that people showed up to claim seats 90 minutes before the proceedings began, and even high-profile attorneys had to watch the session from an overflow room. Rather than just sending attorneys, Lt. Gov. Scott Angelle and the heads of three companies that brought the suit - Todd Hornbeck of Hornbeck Offshore, Boysie Bollinger of Bollinger Shipyards Inc. and Dino Chouest of the Chouest companies, all attended. A federal judge from Houston with a similar case brought June 17 by rig operator Diamond Offshore Co. listened by telephone.


    Deepwater drilling moratorium ruling may be ready as soon as noon Tuesday | NOLA.com
     
  2. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    You seem to know how the judge will rule?
     
  3. boedicca
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    boedicca Uppity Water Nymph Supporting Member

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    Please read for comprehension. I said it's an interesting test. I do, however, suspect that (given his Consitutionalist beliefs) he will rule against the moratorium - and hope he does.
     
  4. boedicca
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    boedicca Uppity Water Nymph Supporting Member

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    Excellent new for those who support The Rule of Law:

    Judge Feldman lifted the six month moratorium on drilling.

    w00t!

    Of course, the U.S. government is going to appeal - I hope it ends up before the SCOTUS.

    A New Orleans federal judge lifted the six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling imposed by President Barack Obama following the largest oil spill in U.S. history. Shares of drilling services companies jumped on the news.

    Obama temporarily halted all drilling in waters deeper than 500 feet on May 27 to give a presidential commission time to study improvements in the safety of offshore operations. More than a dozen Louisiana offshore service and supply companies sued U.S. regulators to lift the ban.

    U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman today granted a preliminary injunction, halting the moratorium. Government lawyers told Feldman that ban was based on findings in a U.S. report following the sinking of the Deepwater Horizon rig off the Louisiana coast in April.

    “The court is unable to divine or fathom a relationship between the findings and the immense scope of the moratorium,” Feldman said in his 22-page decision. “The blanket moratorium, with no parameters, seems to assume that because one rig failed and although no one yet fully knows why, all companies and rigs drilling new wells over 500 feet also universally present an imminent danger.”

    U.S. Will Appeal

    “The court cannot substitute its judgment for that of the agency, but the agency must ‘cogently explain why it has exercised its discretion in a given manner,’” Feldman said, citing a previous ruling. “It has not done so.”

    The U.S. said it would appeal the decision.


    Deepwater Drilling Ban Lifted by New Orleans Federal Judge - Bloomberg
     

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