August 1st, 2006 - WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Senate today passed The Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act (S.3711) by a vote of 71 to 25. This legislation opens a portion of the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) in the Gulf of Mexico for exploration and production of oil and gas. It is estimated that this area contains 1.26 billion barrels of oil and 5.8 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) was a cosponsor of the bill.Technorati tags: Senator Chuck Hagel, Energy Policy
“This is common sense legislation that is long overdue. For decades our country has drifted without a national energy policy. This has left us dependent on other nations in the most unstable parts of the world for our energy supply. This bill is a responsible step towards expanding our domestic energy production. Nebraska’s agricultural producers have been hit hard by dramatic increases in gasoline, diesel, fertilizer, irrigation and heating costs. The OCS has significant oil and natural gas resources that can be developed in an environmentally responsible way,” Hagel said.
This legislation provides for the opening of more than 8.3 million acres on the OCS for oil and gas leasing. Approximately 2.5 million acres will be opened within one year of the passage of this bill. It calls for leasing an additional 5.8 million acres “as soon as practicable.” It would also place a moratorium on an area 125 miles from the West Coast of Florida until 2022. The moratorium would not only protect the coastlines of Florida, but also preserve a strategic military training area in the Gulf of Mexico.
This legislation establishes a revenue sharing program with the Gulf Coast states affected by the drilling. The revenue will be used to strengthen and protect coastal wetlands that are necessary to minimize damage from hurricanes and also enrich the Land and Water Conservation Fund that is distributed to all 50 states.
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
"Senate Passes Legislation to Expand Domestic Energy Supply"
Senator Hagel's office put out the following press release yesterday. Yet another way that Chuck Hagel has been attempting to pursue a comprehensive and intelligent energy policy.