New gulf restoration panel to be set

Sept. 10, 2012 at 4:18 PM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 10 (UPI) -- The new Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council means the task force established after the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico will end, the White House said.

The restoration council will build on the task force's collaboration among all levels of government and incorporate the panel's findings and information when the restoration council develops a comprehensive plan, an executive order released Monday by the White House press secretary's office said.

The task force will end no more than 60 days after the restoration council begins its work, the order said. Any functions of the task force will be performed by the council or a Natural Resource Damage Trustee Council that was created under the Oil Pollution Act, the order said.

The task force was established under an executive order issued Oct. 5, 2010, after the April 20, 2010, blowout and explosion of the offshore Deepwater Horizon rig that lead to the largest oil spill in U.S. history.

The executive order progress of the task force was "noteworthy."

"It has completed the strategy and the preliminary planning and coordination tasks that it was intended to produce and has significantly advanced important ecosystem restoration," the executive order said.

The executive order that established the task force will end when the task force is terminated.

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