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Vol. 13, No. 47 Week of November 23, 2008
Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry

Court vacates agency approval of Shell’s plan; remands to MMS

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has sent Shell Offshore’s Beaufort Sea exploration drilling plan back for more work. On Nov. 20 the court vacated February 2007 approval of the plan by the U.S. Minerals Management Service and remanded the plan to the agency for an enhanced environmental assessment or, “as necessary,” an environmental impact statement.

MMS approval of the plan had been appealed by the North Slope Borough, the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission and several environmental organizations.

A motion by Shell Oct. 30 to lift the temporary injunction imposed by the court in August 2007 was denied as moot.

This story broke as Petroleum News was going to print; see the full story in the Nov. 30 issue.



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