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Virginia Senators Kaine and Warner attempt new push to lift federal hold on oil/gas drilling


Cross-posted from that great revenue generator Richmond Progressive Examiner.

In an effort to put more holes in Virginia soil to extract materials millions of years old, Senators Tim Kaine and Mark Warner are renewing their attempts to lift the federal hold on oil and gas drilling in Virginia’s coastal waters.

But wait, here comes the political cover! According to The Virginian-Pilot, Warner and Kaine each “vowed” they wouldn’t continue their attempts to lift the federal moratorium on oil and gas drilling unless the Commonwealth received a sizable share of the of the oil and gas revenue that would accrue in the future. Under current law, all such profits would go into federal coffers. How this provision came into effect is also a legislative oddity.

For Virginians who are more concerned about the environment than extracting a finite resource that Virginia and the rest of the country could do without, this renewed push by Senators Warner and Kaine come as another disappointing political move by two supposedly “blue” politicians.

During a conference call with reporters, Sen. Warner had this to say, “Both Senator Kaine and I believe in an all-of-the-above approach…If we’re going to do that, one key is to take advantage of all our resources and opportunity.” Taking advantage of our resources, kind of like China is doing now? The world can see what tradeoffs have come out of that battle with planet earth.

All-of-the-above really means passing greater environmental degradation to future generations than those that the present have had to suffer through.

Kaine and Warner will argue that it is a practical solution to Virginia’s and the U.S.’s energy needs. But what they are really saying is that they lack political imagination and the political will to see beyond the teaming seas of fossil fuel lobbyists, sly industry arguments, and their own short-sightedness.  

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