Obama Administration Suspends Drilling in Alaska’s Arctic

In the wake of the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill, President Obama ordered a 6-month moratorium on new permits for deepwater oil and gas wells. The decision suspends planned exploration in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas off the coast of Alaska. Making the announcement in a press conference this week, he also expressed frustration with BP, and expressed that the US government has made every effort possible to address the Gulf of Mexico oil leak.  Mr. Obama said further moves will be made to strengthen oversight of the drilling industry and enhance safety as a commission he is appointing opens its own six-month inquiry. The commission will be led by former Senator Bob Graham, Democrat of Florida, and William K. Reilly, who was administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency under the first President Bush.