The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Virginia Wants Offshore Drilling

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted December 31, 2009

Breaking from his predecessor, Virginia's Governor-elect Bob McDonnell sent a letter to Interior Secretary Salazar, asking the administration to move forward with a scheduled offshore lease sale in 2011. McDonnell says "offshore energy exploration and production will be a priority" during his four-year term as governor. The Commonwealth's current Gov. Tim Kaine sought to delay the lease sale.

As McDonnell states in his letter, he is aware of "several major energy companies that are ready to bid for the leasehold rights," and he says offshore oil and natural gas development could reap big dividends for the citizens of Virginia:

"A 2005 study by a former president at Old Dominion University forecast that offshore natural gas production alone off of the Atlantic coast near Virginia would, over a 10-year period, likely create at least 2,578 new jobs, induce capital investment of $7.84 billion, yield $644 million in direct and indirect payroll, and result in $271 million in state and local taxes."

Offshore energy development also would help the nation's economy and increase U.S. energy security. As McDonnell puts it, it's time to develop America's own offshore energy resources.

Hat tip to J.R. and Krystle at Bearing Drift!

And if you're looking for an interesting read, check out Robert Rapier's blog for his top ten energy stories of 2009. Hat tip to Robert!