Congress Gets Low Grade from OSCA

In Oill Spill Commission Action's second report card, federal government administrative agencies, oil companies and their industry associations, and Congress were graded on how they worked to implement the recommendations set up by the Commission.

In Oil Spill Commission Action's second report, the three "actors" (administration, industry, and Congress) were graded on these five categories: Impacts and Restoration; Safety and Environmental Protection; Spill Response and Containment; Ensuring Adequate Resources; and Frontier Areas; and The Arctic.

The administration received a solid B for its continuation of implementing Commission recommendations and for improving the quality of offshore inspections, increasing inspections in the Gulf Coast by 15 percent, according to the report. The industry was assigned a B-minus and credited with continuing to improve the safety of offshore drilling and making quicker responses to spills.

Congress received the lowest score of the three, a D-plus. Although the report mentions that Congress did create the RESTORE Act (where 80 percent of Clean Water Act fines go to economic development and ecosystem restoration in the Gulf), it has done nothing to help improve environmental protection or safety as recommended by OSCA, said the report. It was also noted in the report that Congress has done nothing to implement recommendations in the "Ensuring Adequate Resources" category.

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