Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons sent a letter urging Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to resume a study of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s inspection program for offshore oil and gas development.
The study, which was being conducted by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, has been underway since 2016 and has already had $100,000 invested. The final report would include recommendations for how best to minimize risks associated with drilling operations and help the Bureau make needed improvements to its safety and environmental stewardship programs that the Government Accountability Office says have fallen short.
The letter was sent just a day after the bureau announced an investigation into the death of a worker on an offshore drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico and weeks after the Trump administration moved to expand permitting for oil and gas drilling off America’s coasts.