US President Donald Trump is getting ready to issue an executive order to undo restrictions on offshore oil and gas drilling, according to Bloomberg.
The news agency cited anonymous witnesses who heard Department of the Interior (DOI) Secretary Ryan Zinke promise an industry conference that the president’s offshore drilling order was imminent.
The order would apparently amend a five-year drilling plan issued by the previous administration of President Barack Obama, restoring areas in the Arctic and the Atlantic seaboard, which had been excluded from those lease sales.
It would also begin the process of revoking a decision made late in President Obama’s term to bar indefinitely large swathes of US Arctic waters and significant areas of the Atlantic from any future leases.
If the executive order is forthcoming it would still need details to be ironed out by the DOI and that could be a process that takes years.
Two weeks ago, reports of securities filings by many energy industry players with offshore interests downplayed the business impact of other deregulatory moves ordered by President Trump.
But making these vast areas available again could be a different story.