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Baird Hails Passage of Critical Oil Spill and Deepwater Drilling Legislation

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Congressman Brian Baird (WA-03) today applauded the House passage of two pieces of critical legislation to expand research for oil spill prevention and response technology as well as safer deepwater drilling technology. Congressman Baird played an integral role in developing both pieces of legislation.

"The BP environmental disaster in the Gulf of Mexico clearly shows huge gaps in research for oil spill prevention and response and it tragically illustrates that we must have safer oil drilling technology," Congressman Baird said. "I have seen the federal response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster up close, and it is massive. However, we must have the most advanced tools to get the job done. These two bills not only strengthen our ability to respond to oil spills and prevent them from happening in the future, but they ensure we are developing safer deepwater drilling technologies."

Today, the House overwhelmingly passed H.R. 2693, the Federal Oil Spill Research Program Act, and H.R. 5716, the Safer Oil and Natural Gas Drilling Technology Research and Development Act. Congressman Baird is a co-sponsor of H.R. 2693, which ensures that research and development continues for preventing and responding to oil spills and updates the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 by establishing a more efficient federal management structure. H.R. 5716 modifies the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to make oil and natural gas drilling safer by supporting federal research to address drilling technology, worker safety, and accident prevention.

As Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, Congressman Baird held multiple hearings on research and development for oil spill response and safe oil and gas drilling technologies.

Both bills now head to the Senate for debate.

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