Carper Issues Statement on Drilling in Gulf of Mexico

WASHINGTON (Aug. 1, 2006) – Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., today issued the following statement on legislation, which passed the Senate 71-25, that would allow additional drilling in the Gulf of Mexico: “High energy prices and our dependence on foreign oil aren’t problems that are going away, nor are they problems that will solve themselves. We have to develop new alternative sources of energy, we have to conserve power, and we have to find ways to responsibly increase our domestic production of oil and gas. While I regret that the Senate was not able to consider a comprehensive energy package that included provisions to encourage greater conservation and the development of alternative sources of energy, I believe that it’s important — for our national security and our economic prosperity — to increase oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico. This bill is a sensible compromise that would increase drilling in parts of the Gulf that are already producing oil and gas, while maintaining a drilling ban on the East and West coasts. I would urge the House to accept this compromise instead of trying to open up more areas, particularly along the nation’s coastlines, to development. In addition, it’s my sincere hope that Congress work together to produce an alternative-energy package that can also be signed into law. The only way we’ll reduce energy prices and our dependence on foreign oil is through responsible domestic production, new conservation techniques and a greater reliance on alternative fuels.”