Houston (9 February 2018) –Yesterday, the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management held a Scoping Meeting in Tallahassee to open a dialogue with Florida residents on proposed drilling activities off the state’s coast. IADC President Jason McFarland offers the following statement in support of inclusion of waters offshore Florida in future Interior Department lease sales:
“The State of Florida often points to its beaches and thriving tourism industry as justification for its exclusion from drilling activity. The reality is that outdoor tourism and offshore oil and gas exploration and production can coexist, and we believe that they should. The Eastern Gulf of Mexico alone, at 64.5 million acres, is projected to contain 3.6 billion barrels of oil, which would in turn support 230,000 jobs and contribute $18 billion per year to the economy. And for Florida, the available data indicates that the recoverable resources lie 100 miles or more off the coast; far from the beaches and the view of tourists who can only see 3-12 miles out on the horizon.”
“Concurrently, the EIA has predicted that U.S. energy demand is set to increase, with the country requiring 12 percent more energy in 2040 than in 2012. This will require us, as a nation, to thoughtfully and responsibly develop all areas with technically recoverable resources, including offshore areas that have historically not been offered in lease sales. While Florida might want to claim ownership of waters beyond the state’s boundary, the fact remains that those waters where oil and gas activities would occur are located in the Outer Continental Shelf and belong to all Americans.”
“The increased demand, and the subsequent increased drilling activity that will accompany it, requires that our operations are performed safely, and with no negative environmental impact. The offshore drilling industry is committed to sending its employees home safely after each shift and protecting the waters where many of them fish and recreate. This industry has dedicated itself to developing new technology, new ways of operating and more intensive worker training programs. The results of those efforts are clearly indicated in sharply falling incident rates, as noted by both the Bureau of Labor Statistics and IADC’s own Incident Statistics Program. In addition, in BSEE’s 2016 analysis on ‘Occurrence Rate for Offshore Oil Spills’, data shows that the occurrence rate for offshore spills continues to improve or go down, despite producing more oil offshore.”
“As the conversation around offshore drilling continues, IADC remains committed to serving as an educative resource to both legislators and the public about the ways in which we all benefit from drilling activities.”
Since 1940, the International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) has exclusively represented the worldwide oil and gas drilling industry. IADC’s mission is to catalyze improved performance for the drilling industry by enhancing operational integrity and championing better regulation to facilitate safer, cleaner and more efficient drilling operations worldwide. For more information, visit the IADC website at www.iadc.org.