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NATIONAL
February 11, 2009 | Jim Tankersley
The Obama administration put the brakes on a push to expand oil and gas drilling off America's coasts Tuesday and promised to speed development of offshore wind farms. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced he will extend public comments for six months on a last-minute proposal by the Bush administration to open swaths of the California, Alaska, Atlantic and Gulf coasts for drilling.
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NATIONAL
April 3, 2014 | By Maria L. La Ganga
SEATTLE - A Coast Guard investigation into the 2012 grounding of the Kulluk, an offshore drilling rig operated by Royal Dutch Shell in the harsh Arctic, blasted the oil company for legal violations, poor management and taking undue risks, according to the final report released Thursday. The Kulluk ran aground 15 months ago on New Year's Eve after breaking free of its tow lines during severe weather and was beached for several days on a remote, rocky shore in southern Alaska. Although the company has invested an estimated $5 billion in recent years in offshore oil exploration in the Alaskan Arctic, the Kulluk's problems were among the difficulties that kept Shell from offshore drilling in 2013 and forced the company to abandon any renewed drilling efforts this year.
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OPINION
August 6, 1989
I am continually impressed by the high caliber of people that President Bush has working for him in his Administration. Believe it or not, Energy Secretary James D. Watkins was quoted in The Times (Part I, July 19), defending the Administration's unrelenting push to drill for oil off the California coastline, as follows: "It was beautiful. We walked on the beach (in Long Beach as a youngster) and got oil on our feet and we thought that was good because it was helpful to the economy of the state of California."
NATIONAL
January 30, 2014 | By Ralph Vartabedian
After investing an estimated $5 billion in recent years into oil exploration in the offshore Alaskan Arctic, Shell announced Thursday that it will abandon any renewed drilling effort this year. The company cited a federal appeals court decision last week that found the Interior Department had awarded permits to Shell based on inadequate information, a major triumph for environmental groups that had been battling Shell for years. “This is a disappointing outcome, but the lack of a clear path forward means that I am not prepared to commit further resources for drilling in Alaska in 2014,” said Ben van Beurden, who took over as the company's chief executive four weeks ago. “We will look to relevant agencies and the court to resolve their open legal issues as quickly as possible.” The statement leaves open Shell's option to resume exploration of the Arctic waters in the future.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 4, 1998 | ROBERT GAMMON
A federal agency will hold a series of public hearings beginning tonight to evaluate the future of oil and gas drilling off the coasts of Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties. The meetings, initiated by the Department of Interior's Minerals Management Service, will be part of a study of proposals for new oil and gas production in coastal waters. The study also will review a "no new development" scenario backed by environmental groups that would stop further drilling.
NATIONAL
November 8, 2011 | By Bettina Boxall, Los Angeles Times
Arctic waters would be open to new oil and gas development under an Obama administration proposal that keeps the Pacific and Atlantic coasts off-limits to more drilling. The Interior Department's offshore leasing plan, released Tuesday, attempts to steer a middle course — and goes too far in the view of environmental groups and not far enough in the eyes of House Republicans. The proposal omits Atlantic and Pacific coast areas that the George W. Bush administration sought to open to drilling.
NATIONAL
November 15, 2011 | By Neela Banerjee, Washington Bureau
The Obama administration named Coast Guard Rear Adm. James A. Watson IV, who ran the federal response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, as the new top monitor of safety and environmental practices in the offshore energy industry. Watson is scheduled to take up his post Dec. 1 as the new director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, replacing interim director Michael Bromwich. The Obama administration brought in Bromwich after the Deepwater Horizon drill rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 workers and spewing nearly 5 million barrels of oil into the ocean in the country's worst offshore environmental disaster.
NEWS
July 25, 1989 | LORI SILVER, Times Staff Writer
A Senate subcommittee on Monday approved a moratorium on offshore oil drilling along most of the California coastline, as well as on millions of acres in Alaska and other areas, until October, 1990. Approval by the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on the interior increases the likelihood of a moratorium becoming law, but the measure still must pass the parent committee today and the full Senate later in the month. The House recently approved a broader moratorium for 84 million acres of U.S.
NEWS
November 14, 1989 | ROBERT W. STEWART, TIMES STAFF WRITER
If the oil industry is to win a public relations war with environmental "grass-eaters and daisy-pickers," it must persuade average Americans that offshore drilling creates jobs and promotes energy independence, Rep. William E. Dannemeyer (R-Fullerton) said in a weekend speech.
NEWS
March 5, 1987 | ROBERT GILLETTE, Times Staff Writer
A majority of California's congressional delegation accused Interior Secretary Donald P. Hodel on Wednesday of failing to give adequate attention to broad environmental concerns in a revised five-year plan for oil and gas drilling that would open large new areas off the state's coast to development.
NATIONAL
January 22, 2014 | By Maria L. La Ganga
SEATTLE - The U.S. government violated the law when it opened millions of acres of the Arctic Ocean to offshore oil drilling, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday, possibly delaying plans by companies such as Royal Dutch Shell to drill off the northwest coast of Alaska in the near future. The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled that the Interior Department did not properly evaluate the impact of oil development in the Chukchi Sea when it sold more than $2.6 billion in development leases in the environmentally sensitive area in 2008.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 5, 2013 | By Seema Mehta
The 2014 gubernatorial campaign officially began Tuesday, with tea party favorite Tim Donnelly, a Republican assemblyman from the Inland Empire, announcing that he is running for governor. "I want to let Jerry Brown know that … not only are we coming for him, but the people of the state of California are coming for their freedom back," Donnelly said, flanked by his wife, three of their five children and dozens of supporters at a sawdust-covered furniture factory in Baldwin Park.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 20, 2012 | By Kenneth R. Weiss, Los Angeles Times
Federal officials Thursday proposed a massive expansion to federal protection of waters off Northern California from offshore oil drilling, seabed mining and ocean dumping. The proposal would more than double the size of the national marine sanctuaries around the Cordell Bank and the Farallon Islands. When combined with the massive Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, the newly expanded system would protect more than a third of California's offshore waters from oil drilling, from Cambria in San Luis Obispo County to Point Arena in Mendocino County.
NATIONAL
September 17, 2012 | By Kim Murphy
Shell Alaska said Monday it has abandoned its efforts to drill into hydrocarbon deposits in the offshore Arctic after the latest in a series of glitches on the company's troubled oil containment barge resulted in damage to the high-tech dome designed to contain oil in the event of an underwater spill. Company officials said they will continue to drill "top holes" off the Alaskan coast through the end of this season's drilling window, but will not attempt to reach any oil deposits this year -- a serious but not fatal setback for the company, which has spent six years attempting to explore its outer continental shelf leases off the coast of Alaska.
NATIONAL
August 22, 2012 | By Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times
Mitt Romney will unveil an energy plan Thursday that he says will allow North America to be energy independent by 2020 and decrease costs to consumers by increasing domestic production. The plan, released to reporters Wednesday, includes approving the Keystone XL pipeline bringing oil from Canada to Texas - President Obama has put off a decision until after the election - and increasing domestic production to spur job growth. Romney outlined a handful of specifics to accomplish his goals, among them streamlining existing environmental laws and "aggressively" opening new offshore areas for drilling, starting with Virginia and the Carolinas.
NATIONAL
July 15, 2012 | By Kim Murphy
SEATTLE - Shell's Arctic oil ambitions ran into new problems Saturday evening when the Discoverer drilling rig, slated to begin exploratory operations in the Chukchi Sea next month, ran adrift in stiff winds in Alaska's Dutch Harbor and came perilously close to the beach. The vessel 's anchor failed to hold and the 514-foot ship began drifting, but its movement was halted when tug boats were called in to assist, Coast Guard spokeswoman Sara Francis told the Los Angeles Times.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 17, 2009 | Maria L. La Ganga
For all his green talk en route to the White House, President Barack Obama remains a cipher on one of the most critical environmental and economic issues facing California: whether to expand drilling for oil and gas off the coast for the first time in a generation.
NEWS
April 12, 1990 | From United Press International
Secretary of the Interior Manuel Lujan Jr., after two days touring areas affected by the Exxon Valdez disaster, said Wednesday that the time has come to resume offshore drilling, suspended since the oil spill last year. Lujan also said that Exxon Corp. must restore the soiled Alaska environment after it finishes cleaning up the spill from the tanker, which struck a reef and lost 11 million gallons of oil in Alaska's Prince William Sound on March 24, 1989.
NATIONAL
May 25, 2012 | By Kim Murphy
SEATTLE -- The heaviest polar ice in more than a decade is clinging to the northern coast of Alaska and could postpone the commencement of offshore oil drilling in the Arctic until the beginning of August - a delay of up to two weeks, Shell Alaska officials said Friday. Unveiling the newly refurbished ice-class drilling rig that is poised to commence plumbing two exploratory wells this summer in the Beaufort Sea, Shell executives  said the unusually robust sea ice would further narrow what already is a tight window for operations in a $4-billion program designed to measure the extent of what could be the United States' most important new inventory of oil and gas. Shell has pledged to end its first season of exploratory drilling by Oct. 31 in the Beaufort Sea and 38 days earlier in the more remote Chukchi Sea to remain within the relatively ice-free summer season.
NATIONAL
May 20, 2012 | By Alana Semuels, Los Angeles Times
LAFAYETTE, La. - Visitors to this oil town might be forgiven for wondering whether the BP oil spill and subsequent drilling moratorium ever happened. "Now hiring" signs are plastered on billboards around town, and hotels such as the Crowne Plaza are chock full of seminars training students to work on offshore rigs. Many offshore companies can't find enough workers for the jobs they're listing. This parish has the lowest unemployment rate in Louisiana, 4.8%. Such is the opportunity on the offshore rigs that Sheila Clark, whose husband, Donald, died in the Deepwater Horizon explosion two years ago, said her 22-year-old son recently asked her how she'd feel if he went to work on a rig. "I can't stop him," said Clark, who moved to Baton Rouge after her husband's death.
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