The President's Oil Spill Commission, who was charged with determining the cause of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster and making recommendations to guard against future oilspills, released their report today.
The report is a scathing indictment of the industry for failing to have adequate response plans in place for rig blow outs and of the government for decades of lax oversight. The report makes it clear that the Deepwater Horizon spill is not an isolated incident, but the result of a systemic failure of the management and oversight of the offshore oil drilling industry.
Further, the report makes clear current practices put us in dire risk of another spill and calls for serious reform of the governments oversight of the oil industry. The report's conclusions can be summarized in three broad categories: managerial foul-ups, systemic failure and regulatory weakness. The report also suggests that the liability cap for oil spills should be dramatically increased and that most of the mitigation funding for the spill go the Gulf for restoration.
A more thorough summary of the recommendations can be found here
The report makes it clear that Obama's decision to prohibit leases in the continental US is a wise decision and is necessary to avoid another spill of this magnitude along our coasts.