Oct 13, 2010 /EIN Presswire/ – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar ended the moratorium on deepwater oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico following the Deepwater Horizon disaster of last April.

With the pressure coming from the oil industry and upcoming election battles in oil-producing states, the White House opened the Gulf for drilling after making what it called “significant progress” in reducing the risks associated with deepwater drilling. Business leaders and politicians have stressed that the industry has lost more than 8,000 jobs from the Gulf region since the moratorium was enacted.

Oil industry leaders warned against early celebration based on Salazar’s statements, as it could be some time before permits are issued by the Department of the Interior for the reopening of oil rigs.

Environmental advocates blasted the President’s decision to allow drilling in the Gulf of Mexico as a huge risk to the damaged coastal regions and as a political move to appease the oil industry.

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