Oil Spill Commissioners Form Group to Ensure Oversight, Reporting, to Prevent Future Disasters

First Report Card scheduled for April 2012 

(Washington, D.C.—March 14, 2012) The seven members of President Obama’s National Oil Spill Commission today announced they are forming a new organization, OIL SPILL COMMISSION ACTION, to monitor the progress of government and industry in implementing a series of critical safety recommendations released in January 2011. Biographies of the Commissioners are available at OSCAction.org.

“The Commissioners have become increasingly concerned that efforts to implement the recommendations are ebbing in spite of all that still needs to be done,” said William K. Reilly, co-chair of the President’s Commission. “We want to keep a spotlight on what’s needed to ensure the nation moves forward with offshore energy development safely and responsibly.”

Soon after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, President Obama established the Oil Spill Commission to examine the root causes of the disaster and recommend options for guarding against and mitigating the impacts of oil spills associated with offshore drilling. OIL SPILL COMMISSION ACTION, the Commissioners’ new organization, will issue its first report card on Congress, the Administration and industry in April 2012, around the second anniversary of the spill.

“We intend to do our best to ensure that the public and other stakeholders do not lose sight of the problems we identified and the actions needed to mitigate future spills like the Deepwater Horizon,” said Bob Graham, the Commission’s other co-chair. “Another major concern for us is that the environmental and economic restoration programs in the Gulf are adequately funded and proceed expeditiously.”

Two other primary concerns for the Commission were responsible energy development in the Arctic and international cooperation in developing and implementing offshore safety procedures. Mr. Reilly has been working to foster US policies to ensure that deep water drilling in Mexican or Cuban waters are eligible for US environmental and safety technologies in the event of accidents or spills. Commission member Fran Ulmer, who is currently chairing the US Arctic Research Commission, is focusing on energy development in the Arctic. Commission member Don Boesch is focusing on the effort to restore a healthy Gulf. Toby Clark, the Commission’s Director of Operations, is overseeing the report card effort.

- # -

Contact Toby Clark

(202) 525-OSCA (525-6722)