Mariner Energy rig explosion: political fallout

By Adam Hooper - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Just weeks after beginning to become comfortable with the glimmer of hope coming out of the BP oil spill, Louisiana water ways are threatened again. Preliminary reports from the state show the recent rig explosion is not as dire. Some believe it is Louisiana's economy that will suffer, and not the environment.

"Every opportunity that they have to say 'I told you so', the people that don't want offshore oil and gas drilling are the pure environmentalists who don't want to understand that there can be a balance between drill baby drill and moratorium," said Congressman Charlie Melancon.

"There are clearly folks in Washington, including in the administration, who use those sort of scare tactics, and everything they can, to advance a preexisting, left wing agenda, against domestic oil and gas. I am concerned about that," said Senator David Vitter.

If the moratorium is not lifted, and soon, some believe the economic impact could be damaging.

"There is a potential that we could lose over a thousand more jobs, potentially ten thousand additional jobs if we don't get back to work quickly," said Stephen Moret, Louisiana Secretary of Economic Development.

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