Congress has passed a measure banning drilling for oil or natural gas in the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham has the details:
Congress has passed a measure banning drilling for oil or natural gas in the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham reports.
The legislation includes a two-year moratorium on new oil and gas drilling in or under the Great Lakes. US Senators Debbie Stabenow, a Democrat from Michigan and Peter Fitzgerald, a Republican from Illinois came up with the plan. They say the measure was needed in order to protect the waters of the Great Lakes from environmental damage. In Michigan, Governor John Engler denounced the measure. Engler is a long-standing supporter of drilling under the lakes for new energy sources. Susan Shafer is the governor’s press secretary.
“We’re concerned about the federal government coming in and telling us that Michigan and other Great Lakes states: ‘This is what you will do; you don’t have a choice on this.’ And, in the past there have been no federal statutes that have governed control over oil or natural gas in the bottomlands of the Great Lakes. And, so, that’s always been governed by state statute.”
Michigan was preparing to issue new drilling permits. Because of term limits, Engler leaves office at the end of next year. The candidates running for governor in Michigan all oppose new drilling permits. For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, this is Lester Graham.