New Jersey Dems say explosion 'sober reminder' of hazards of offshore drilling

Although the administration’s plan would not open areas off of New Jersey’s shore, Lautenberg and Menendez say drilling of the coasts of Mid-Atlantic states could create a spill that jeopardizes their state’s tourism industry.

“The bottom line is that when you drill for oil, there is always a risk that not only puts lives on the line, but a risk that puts miles of coastline and the economy on the line as well,” Lautenberg and Menendez said.

They added: “We plan to oppose any climate or energy legislation before the U.S. Senate that does not include significant safeguards for the Jersey Shore.”

The statements quote reports estimating the well is leaking 8,000 barrels of oil a day. Earlier, officials from BP, which owns the well, and the U.S. Coast Guard, however, said it wasn’t clear how much oil was still seeping into the Gulf.