Journal: Shutdown will freeze new offshore drilling

The federal government shutdown will hurt the oil-and-gas industry by freezing the review of new offshore drilling plans and halting new well permits on public lands, The Wall Street Journal reports on its website, www.wsj.com.

Contingency plans by the U.S. Department of Interior show that its Bureau of Offshore Energy Management will stop processing new applications for offshore exploration and development, the Journal reported. However, the bureau will continue most safety inspections and reviews of ongoing offshore drilling.

The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement will continue to review and issue drilling permits on existing offshore projects. At BSSE, 403 of 779 workers will continue working, most of them in Louisiana field offices which deal with offshore exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Bureau of Land Management will stop reviewing and issuing new or revised drilling permits on federal land. Existing wells and those that have been permitted can continue operating.

Read more from the Journal’s Corporate Intelligence blog.