Obama administration should know that 12,000 jobs lost because of drilling moratorium is a big loss for Louisiana: An editorial
Even leaders of President Obama's own commission on the BP oil spill have noted the "disconnect" between Louisianians and federal officials in Washington regarding the deepwater drilling moratorium and its economic impact.
Gerald Herbert, The Associated Press
The Obama administration estimates 8,000 to 12,000 jobs were lost because of the deepwater drilling moratorium.
That disconnect was strikingly evident this week, as the administration sought to portray the moratorium's impact as modest by saying that no more than 12,000 jobs have been lost because of the ban.
Testifying in the U.S. Senate this week, Undersecretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank said that about 2,000 of 9,700 rig workers have been laid off or left the Gulf since the drilling ban went into effect. She said the government estimates rig spending will be down $1.8 billion, causing a total job loss of between 8,000 and 12,000 positions, including rig suppliers.
Louisiana officials and industry observers disputed some of the premises in the government's analysis, and their observations have merit. But even if the administration's figures are correct, 12,000 jobs lost is a major hit for the economy of a recovering region --- and the administration shouldn't be cavalier about that.
LSU economics professor Joseph Mason, who has studied the moratorium's impact, said the government's estimate of job losses doesn't differ much from his own. The distinction, he said, is in how federal officials are framing their conclusions. In particular, Mr. Mason noted that many Gulf Coast communities are small, meaning the loss of even a few hundred jobs can be devastating.
"The administration says 'only' 12,000 jobs will be lost," Mr. Mason said. "This is almost as if they are telling a region that has been hit by disaster -- both natural and manmade -- time and time again that we'll 'only' wipe out a handful of their communities."
He's right, and that goes against President Obama's promise that his administration would help our region recover from this disaster.
...gotta think big picture, though. the world has to as well.
12000 jobs lost in drilling... or how many thousands (fishing, shrimping, tourism) are affected by oil in the gulf?
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