Sunday, September 21, 2008

Massachusetts Natural Gas


As Massachusetts lawmakers and environmental groups gear up to block oil drilling off the New England coast, the debate on how much oil and natural gas is out there is back for the first time in close to 30 years.

There may not be lot of oil, but the petroleum industry says there might be enough natural gas there to heat all of the homes in Massachusetts for close to two decades.

But the best answer, according to several sources, is that without new testing, it’s really anyone’s guess how much oil and gas are there.

“It’s like looking at a row of trucks. You assume inside all of them are 100 boxes, but unless you actually go in and count, you have no idea,” said Blossom Robinson, spokeswoman for the U.S. Minerals Management Service.

And no one has counted or measured anything except fish on Georges Bank since 1982, when a federal ban on offshore drilling began.

President Bush decided this summer to end that moratorium; it is set to expire Sept. 30.

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