President Obama Misleads Public on Major Energy, Environmental Issues
President Ignored Science on Yucca Mountain, Texas' Permitting System, Now Deepwater Moratorium
July 22, 2010
Dallas - It is no surprise that a federal appeals court refused to reinstate the Obama Administration's deepwater drilling moratorium, since the scientist cited in support of the moratorium actually rejected the policy, according to NCPA Senior Fellow, H. Sterling Burnett.
"The Obama Administration claimed that the moratorium followed the findings of a scientific advisory panel," Burnett said. "However, it was revealed that a majority of the panel members had recommended against the moratorium, arguing that the potential harms from a moratorium outweighed the risks of continued drilling."
"President Obama has strayed far from his promises made both as a Presidential candidate and as president, especially in the area of energy and environmental policy," Burnett continued. "The president claimed that his actions would be transparent and follow the science, yet on issue after issue, he has ignored the science and flouted the law."
For President Obama, the law presents no limit to his authority, Burnett noted. Three recent actions by the administration highlight this tendency to place Presidential authority above the law. First, the Obama Administration had the department of energy discontinue the plans to build the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository. Second, the administration unilaterally placed a moratorium on new offshore oil exploration and production. And third, the EPA withdrew its approval of Texas' clean air flexible permitting system.
"In each of the three cases, the Obama Administration claimed to be following the science and acting to protect the environment, yet nothing could be further from the truth," Burnett said. "Fortunately, a backlash has begun with the courts, administrative panels, as well as state governments challenging the Obama Administrations legally and scientifically questionable actions."
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals seems to understand the profound harm an offshore drilling moratorium would impose to the economy when they rejected the moratorium, Burnett said. In addition, a regulatory panel ruled that the administration violated the law when it withdrew the Yucca Mountain permit without legislative approval.
"Two wrongs don't make a right, and since there is no evidence that offshore operators routinely make the same errors in judgment, the rig workers, the workers in ancillary fields and the public as a whole should not be faced with collective punishment in order to satisfy the anti-energy appetites of environmentalists and their allies in the administration."