Atlantic Offshore Access to Oil & Gas Developments

April 25, 2011

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North Carolina looks to Offshore

Last week in the North Carolina General Assembly, the Energy Jobs Act (S. 709) was introduced.This legislation would encourage Governor Perdue to enter into a tri-state pact with the governors of Virginia and South Carolina to push for federal approval of and revenue-sharing agreements for offshore exploration and development of oil and natural gas.  Additionally the bill would call for the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources to explore the potential of onshore shale gas sites and the regulatory framework needed to provide proper oversight.  


During a press conference announcing the legislation, State Senator Harry Brown estimated that maximizing these energy resources could create more than 6,700 jobs and generate half a billion dollars in tax revenue.  


North Carolina efforts follow Virginia’s lead on the Atlantic coast in pursuit of offshore exploration.  In 2010, the Virginia General Assembly passed bi-partisan legislation to support offshore exploration and development of energy sources and dedicate potential future royalty payments as a revenue stream for transportation needs, and to fund research into renewable energy sources.  


On the federal level, U.S. Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, recently introduced the Virginia Outer Continental Shelf Energy Production Act of 2011 (H.R. 1372) calling for a Virginia offshore oil & natural gas lease sale within one year of enactment.


Additionally, U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings of Washington introduced three bills that would:  end the Obama Administration’s de facto moratorium on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico; require the delayed or cancelled lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and off the coast of Virginia to take place; and lift the Administration’s ban on new offshore drilling.  


Click here for more on federal efforts.  


View a webcast of the Energy Jobs Act press conference.  


Click here for more on the Energy Jobs Act.  



Public Continues Support for Offshore Oil Development


Just a year after the incident in the Gulf of Mexico, public support for offshore drilling and exploration remains strong.  In a survey released last week by the CNN/Opinion Research Corporation, 69% of Americans favor increased offshore drilling while 31% opposed.  


CNN Polling Director Keating Holland stated, “Although support for increased drilling in U.S. waters is highest among Republicans, a majority of Democrats also favor it.”  In the same survey, 56% of Democrats, 70% of independents, and 86% of Republicans favor more offshore oil development.  


Click here to read more on the offshore drilling opinion poll.  




Today’s Average Prices

National:  $3.86 per gallon

North Carolina:  $3.78 per gallon

Virginia:  $3.79 per gallon

NYMEX:  $111.71 crude future


For more information:

Stephen A. Horton

Jeffrey M. Britt

Ashley K. Allen