May 14th, 2010
03:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Congressmen introduce new oil rig safety legislation

 Congressmen introduce new oil rig safety legislation.

Congressmen introduce new oil rig safety legislation.

Washington (CNN)–Amid the tragedy unfolding in the Gulf Coast region, two U.S. congressmen have teamed up to prevent future devastating oil spills.

Republican congressmen Aaron Schock from Illinois and Adam Putnam from Florida introduced legislation Friday that would incorporate new safety and preventative measures that countries such as Norway and Brazil have already implemented.

Their bill, titled the Offshore Safety and Response Improvement Act, would require offshore oil rigs to have acoustic remote control emergency shut off devices.

"The recent calamity in the Gulf Coast has clearly illustrated we must improve our disaster planning and prevention as we mine for fossil fuels in the future," said Schock, who sits on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

"We must correct this situation, and we must correct it now," Putnam said. "Until we can develop new sources of energy, our nation will continue to depend on fossil fuels for many years to come. We must be able to access these resources in a way that is safe and environmentally sound."

Filed under: Aaron Schock • Adam Putnam
soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. jeff jackson, alabama

    How about you freeloaders
    in D.C. concentrate your energy
    on this cleanup and worry about
    future logistical stuff later.
    The same type of mindsets were
    in charge of the Viet Nam war.

    May 14, 2010 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  2. Duck Fallas

    They should tack that on to the "Protect the World Trade Center from Jets" legislation.

    May 14, 2010 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  3. Mark from Louisiana

    Looks like Joe Biden has known about offshore drilling problems for 36 years and has done nothing about it....typical politician

    Vice President Joe Biden says the federal government's oversight of offshore drilling "was as bad as I thought it was...."

    Biden was responding to a question about a New York Times story published Friday about Gulf of Mexico drilling plans that received approval from the Obama administration without the permits required under the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

    Biden told Pittsburgh radio station KDKA he thought lax federal oversight of permits was a problem throughout his six-term Senate career

    May 14, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  4. GI Joe

    Why risk our precious coastal resources for less than 2% of the world supply of oil? That's as bad as war (blood) for oil.

    We need to MAKE/TAKE this opportunity to push full-speed ahead with other means of transportation. PERIOD.

    May 14, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  5. GI Joe

    BP sells most of the oil to China – maybe our resources should be saved for us and they should drill around China.

    May 14, 2010 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  6. All the news that is fit to omit

    Can someone bring up the FACT that Salazaar and the Oweblamo administration ALLOWED FOR BP to not have to go through stricter inspections just last YEAR?

    They deemed the company and the sites were safe, so SAFE that they were going to be given an award, the award presentation JUST GOT CANCELLED by the Oweblamo administration (within the last week or so).

    Why would BP get such cushy deals by Oweblamo you with a brain would ask????

    They gave Oweblamo MORE money than any other politician this last cycle.

    ALL FACTS SHEEP and thank god these Republicans are doing something beside DNC fundraisers...................

    May 14, 2010 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Congressmen introduce new oil rig safety legislation
    -------------------------------–Alas, would that they would move this quickly in coming up with any other piece of legislation. Is it going to take a disaster involving THEIR oil friends having to come up with BIG MONEY in order for them to get off their duffs? Notice how another HUGE disaster: THE ECONOMY BOTTOMING OUT could'nt get them to move towards finding a solution or putting in place legislation to prevent THAT from happenning again. Oh but their oil buddies, they must be protected against any future re-occurrence that might deplete their bulging pockets.

    Is it just me folks?

    May 14, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  8. Rick McDaniel

    Congress is going to have to convince the public, that their "regulations" will actually be effective, before the public is going to back them.

    This is NOT a small matter, in the face of the potential destruction of the entire Gulf ecosystem.

    May 14, 2010 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  9. silvertop

    Wow, Norway and Brazil are ahead of US in risk management! Where have we been? Well, better late than never.

    May 14, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  10. dan smith

    No Mr president,what's ridiculous is that we elected a child as president of the free world and now we are paying the price for doing so. Many reputable NASA scientist have debunked the global warming myth. Its time to open up the Alaskan oil reserves so we can limit foreign oil. Wind and solar energy have been proven to be too cost ineffective and it causes more pollution driving an electric hybrid than a gas vehicle,that IS A PROVEN FACT. Perhaps someday we will be able to harness solar power in a way that will be efficient,but for now that is beyond our engineering capabilities.

    May 14, 2010 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  11. Dano

    So it took an ecological disaster of this magnitude to wake up the GOP to the fact that safety features that most of the rest of the oil producing nations have already installed are necessary? And this after they spent the last 16 years arguing that these safety features were too expensive for the "poor" oil companies to afford. I think it's more to try to defuse the inevitable backlash against offshore drilling that will occur when pictures of dead birds, dolphins, and sea turtles start showing up.

    May 14, 2010 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  12. rosher32

    Brownie point for the visionary congressmen....

    May 14, 2010 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  13. Franklin

    The President hasn't read the legislation yet, however he believes that congressmen Schock and Putnamhe are acting STUPIDLY!

    May 14, 2010 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  14. John in Brooklyn

    OK...let me get this straight....we have not ONE but, in fact, TWO Republican members of Congress proposing legislation that would b protect against environmental impact of offshore oil drilling operations.

    Pardon my skepticism, but isn't this fox and henhouse kinda territory here?

    When I hear that Republicans are offering new safety regulations for oil companies, I have absolutely no doubt that the legislation has been virtually WRITTEN by the oil lobbyists on K Street. The big oil companies are realizing that the BP debacle is going to lead to tighter regs and so they have obviously proactively gone to their GOP allies to make sure that the regs are tighter only in appearance, not substance.

    May 14, 2010 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  15. An Unqualified Congress (House of Representatives & Senators)

    I am shocked at how inept Congress and regulators of ALL INDUSTRIES have been in the past.

    Don't these people have any SMARTS? Why are they Congressmen & Senators ... it is certainly not due to their intellect. All they do is react in the same pompous way AFTER THE FACT.

    We have too many lawyers in Congress and not enough Engineers. Georgia Tech'ers, MIT'ers, Cal Tech'ers couldn't have been SNOWED by Haliburton, TransOcean or BP into signing off on "FAIL SAFE" regulations that were anything but Fail safe.

    Some Columbia, Chicago & Stanford MBA'ers couldn't have been BAMBOOZLED by Wall St. into signing off on rules that allowed overleveraged CASINO gambling on the tax payers dime.

    We all know that Republicans favor business interests over the American people. That's no secret. But let's at least reject a bunch of law school graduates as our representatives. We see that gets us NO WHERE.

    May 14, 2010 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  16. File under "Sarcasm"

    I'm so impressed with our Congressional Representatives.

    First they took a crash course in automotive engineering so they could specify how automakers should design cars. Then they took a quick course in finance so they could understand how to run the investment banking industry. Now they've gotten advanced degrees in petroleum and reliability engineering so they can tell the oil industry how to design oil rigs. I can't wait to see what these supermen do next.

    Maybe it's like the recent commercials, "No, I'm not a Doctor, but I did sleep at a Holiday Inn Express last night."

    May 14, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  17. John in Tampa

    First, pass legislation that will

    (1) take ceilings off damages, let them buy insurance and maybe get paranoid enough besides to improve their own methods. Actually it sort of evens out, the more careful they are the less insurance will cost them.

    (2) whatever else clearly promotes the idea of never letting this happen again. Brazil and Sweden are ahead of us? Too much socialism but by the way their existence is safer? Hmmm.

    Second, point fingers. We the people let our Congress write up a system where WE end up paying the price for things we were in no position to control. Screw that.

    May 14, 2010 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  18. thomas

    Kinda a day late and a dollar short !
    Where where these guys in the Bush years of irresponsibility ?

    Also , please CNN ,
    interview that freak blow head from Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe on the economic and environmental loss do to his lack of insight.
    Pin him to the wall!

    May 14, 2010 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  19. File under "Sarcasm"

    I can't wait for President Obama to spin this one.

    I had to laugh today hearing him say how ridiculous the Oil Industry executives were in front of Congress. What's ridiculous is Obama and his Democrat Congress trying to assign blame before the investigation is complete and expecting the oil companys to say mea culpa, sink to their knees, grovel and ask for another 50 lashes from the supreme leader. Sound's like another case of the arrogance that gave us the Cambridge police acting "stupidly".

    May 14, 2010 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  20. Sensible Cape Coral FL

    Remember that we had two oil men running the country for eight years. The industry lobbyists wrote the regs for the industry. Why are we surprised at the spill?

    May 14, 2010 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  21. Flyer69

    Drill baby drill. No oversight. No government intrusion. We will oversee ourselves!

    May 14, 2010 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  22. Pioneer

    Just a suggestion to the idiots in Washington.

    Send everyone with an idea and suggestion down to the gulf to get this mess cleaned up and fixed.
    You have given BP enough time to get this corrected. They don't have it in them to fix this.
    They screwed up and created this oil mess. Not to mention the death of the people on the oil rig. BP obviously can't get this stopped and are in need of assistance. It is time to send the best educated people this country has to offer. From the Navy Seals to the engineers running the best colleges in this country
    This government needs to take charge and get this fixed. Then you can send BP a bill in the form of a special tax for the clean up and fix up. Don't forget the loss of jobs and economy in the Gulf. From the guy that fishes to the sandwich shop that serves the fisherman lunch and coffee. Just make sure that it is a Tax and not a "legitimet claim" that BP decides. The tax payer is tired of paying for corrperate screw ups.
    Just a thought but if this leak was off the coast of Massachetts it would have been plugged up and cleaned up by now.

    May 14, 2010 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  23. Four and The Door

    An Unqualified Congress (House of Representatives & Senators) May 14th, 2010 3:32 pm ET

    We all know that Republicans favor business interests over the American people. That's no secret.
    Knowing how to run a government that benefits the economy ( and not just it's own political agenda ) is well, yes a feature of Republican philosophy that works really well.

    As for the Democratic philosphy of favoring big government over the economy and the people, that doesn't seem to work really well. The politicians will find out in November it doesn't work well for them, either.

    May 14, 2010 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  24. NVa Native

    Idle threats from idle minds .. "four and the door"?
    This death and destruction that continues is the result of [Republican] people running the government who prefer "no" government and "no" government oversite and/or regulation.
    This "drill, baby, drill" nightmare will (unfortunately) be around for a long time to illustrate what un-checked Republican governance looks like.
    Of course there are so many other failures from the Bush/Cheney years that this is only a small part of the price we will pay.

    May 14, 2010 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  25. charles

    i am very worried that the tax payers are going to foot the bill in cleaning up the oil spill. Congress should enact the law to compelll who ever responsible to pay the entire cost for the clean up and the economic losses for the people close to the oil spill. The government should also be compersated for the loss of taxes. People should take full responsibility not only when they are sharing the huge proffits , but also when they inccur losses. Lets not be like the tobacco and oxy co- addicts where the tax payers care for the sick and the addicts when the copmanys are making big proffits. BP for the sake of retaining the well open has put too much enfasis on collect the oil than closing the pipes because they know it that as soon as they close the leakage , it will never be opened agian.

    May 14, 2010 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
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