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President Obama lifted the moratorium on offshore drilling last week, against the wishes of environmental groups. (Photo Courtesy of the US Minerals Management Service, Lee Tilton)
President Obama lifted the moratorium on offshore drilling last week, against the wishes of environmental groups. (Photo Courtesy of the US Minerals Management Service, Lee Tilton)

Drilling for climate change

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There's been lots of speculation about why President Obama is allowing expanded gas and oil drilling offshore. Many environmentalists don't like it. Lester Graham reports the move might be part of a larger strategy to get a climate bill passed in the Senate.

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Transcript: Lester Graham, April 5, 2010

President Obama never ruled out expanding drilling offshore, but it still caught a lot of people off-guard last week when he lifted the moratorium. John Prandato thinks he knows why he did. Prandato writes for the Partnership for a Secure America. In a recent article he argues it's about the climate change and energy bill being pieced together by Senators John Kerry, Joesph Lieberman and Lindsey Graham. Senator Graham has said a carbon cap-and-trade scheme such as the one in the House climate bill... is dead in the Senate. But maybe not... now...

Prandato: Graham has been a proponent of offshore drilling and he has said any climate change and energy bill would have to include expanded offshore drilling, which Obama has now made that concession. So, with any luck, this concession could revive cap-and-trade in the Senate. But, we'll just have to see.

Senator Graham says offshore drilling should be expanded further. The White House says the President is not "horse trading" to get a climate bill out of the Senate.

For The Environment Report, I'm Lester Graham

Copyright © 2010. The Regents of the University Of Michigan. Used with permission.

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