WASHINGTON, Sept. 14 (UPI) -- Any additional regulations regarding offshore oil and natural gas operations should open the door to new resource development, a U.S. energy group said.
U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement Director Michael Bromwich unveiled a proposal to reduce the likelihood of a major disaster during oil and gas development on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf.
U.S. lawmakers, particularly those in the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives, are pressing for more energy production on the OCS. Supporters of the measure say lower energy prices and more domestic energy security could come from oil and gas exploration in places such as Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico.
The proposed measure includes rules regarding worker safety, operational authority and third-party safety audits. The federal government said the rules were drafted in part based on lessons learned from last year's oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Erik Milito, director of upstream activity at the American Petroleum Institute, said API was looking forward to reviewing the proposals to ensure worker safety and environmental protection guidelines are met.
"Any additions to already intricate regulatory processes should allow for new exploration and responsible development of our domestic offshore energy resources without unpredictable barriers or delays," he added.