Today, Congressman Blake Farenthold (TX-27) introduced H.R. 6208, the Retaining Essential Environmental Fishing Structures (REEFS) Act. This bill places a two year moratorium on an October 2010 Department of Interior (DOI) directive to remove all non-producing oil rigs from the Gulf of Mexico. Now, almost two years later, the Gulf Coast is feeling the negative impacts of this directive as important habitats are being removed. Rep. Farenthold had the following comments on the REEFS Act:
"The REEFS Act stops a misguided DOI directive requiring removal of safely plugged rigs from the Gulf of Mexico, destroying valuable ecosystems. Fishermen, divers, the oil industry and even our school children understand the important role these artificial habitats play in both the economy and ecology of the Gulf. The REEFS Act gives the Government time to find a common sense long-term solution to save man made reefs instead of removing decades of environmental progress."