The top oil lobbyist in Washington DC says Shell Oil should not be hampered by the grounding of the Kulluk.
The American Petroleum Institute says Shell Oil should move forward with its Arctic Ocean plans this year.
“The most important thing is to distinguish that the issue was a transportation, a movement situation,” Gerard said.
Gerard says the incident it has nothing to do with oil drilling. The Kulluk has been successfully anchored near Kodiak Island.
Gerard says that federal regulators are closely watching Shell as it drills and moves its fleet of rigs and vessels. So, in his eyes, it’s safe for the company to proceed with its Arctic drilling plans this summer.
“I think they’re not only highly regulated, but also highly monitored and scrutinized at what they’re doing,” Gerard said. “So I think that clearly needs to move forward.”
Gerard’s comments come on the same day that Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced an expedited review of Shell’s Arctic ambitions.
The review will be completed within 60 days, and will give considerable attention to the Kulluk and the failed containment dome test this past summer.