In a well-publicized retreat, the Democrats in Congress gave in to pressure from Republicans and the public and agreed to let the statutory ban on drilling for oil in the Outer Continental Shelf and developing shale oil in the Rocky Mountains lapse. Today, however, Senator Jim DeMint warned that Harry Reid is surreptitiously trying to resurrect the ban on shale oil:
We’ve just been alerted that despite House Democrats relenting on extending bans on offshore drilling and oil shale in the continuing resolution (CR) appropriations bill, Democrat Senate Leader Harry Reid has decided to sneak an extension of the oil shale ban through as Congress fights over the financial bailout. …
Here is the text of Reid’s proposed new ban on oil shale, that he is trying to add as an amendment to the CR or move seperately as a “stimulus” package, or we should say an anti-stimulus package if this is included.
Sec 1602 continues ban on oil shale. The language follows:
SEC. 1602. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, including section 152 of division A of H.R. 2638 (110th Congress), the Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act, 2009, the terms and conditions contained in section 433 of division F of Public Law 110â€“161 shall remain in effect for the 19 fiscal year ending September 30, 2009.
The U.S. has more shale oil, by far, than Saudi Arabia has petroleum. If the Democrats succeed in blocking development of this resource, the long-term damage to our economy may dwarf anything now being debated in connection with the mortgage bailout.
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