Posted on December 5, 2013 at 2:32 pm by Jennifer A. Dlouhy
WASHINGTON — If companies were allowed to drill for oil and gas in Atlantic waters off the East Coast, the work would help create nearly 280,000 new jobs and contribute some $23.5 billion to the U.S. economy each year by 2035, according to a study unveiled Thursday by two industry trade groups.
The report by Sugar Land, Texas-based Quest Offshore Inc. also projects that the activity could yield 1.3 million barrels of oil equivalent per day, based on current estimates of the amount of crude and natural gas lurking along the East Coast.
Commissioned by the National Ocean Industries Association and the American Petroleum Institute, the study represents the oil industry’s latest bid to convince the Obama administration to make plans for auctioning offshore drilling leases in Atlantic waters beginning as soon as 2017.
The Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management soon will begin the long process of developing a schedule for selling outer continental shelf drilling leases from Aug. 27, 2017 through mid-2022 – and the oil industry wants to make sure the Atlantic acreage isn’t left out.