Anyone who has watched Barack Obama’s cozy relationship with nuclear power companies shouldn’t be surprised. He’s opening up offshore areas to oil exploration, but he’s making sure to keep California, a rich electoral state, free from invasive drilling. However, those who misconstrued Obama’s marketing to mean he would side against business are in shock today. EnviroKnow has a terrific round up of progressives who are screaming drill, baby, drill.

So much for the youth climate movement. They came out to vote in droves and now are feeling a sharp pain in the middle of their backs:

Youth, the millennial generation so inspired by Obama to vote in record numbers, have the most to lose from the expansion of drilling. Even some coastal governors and senators will be angry about the announcement because of the small amount of oil and huge environmental risks. If white-haired governors and senators are worried, what about young people who are thinking about protecting this coastline for us and our children, long after the tiny amounts of energy have been extracted?

[…] We aren’t going to take this. A protest is planned for an event in Florida today where Newt Gingrich will be promoting drilling. Nevermind that he needs to entice people to come with free “Drill Here Drill Now Pay Less” bumper stickers to the first 1000 rsvps, this event shows how dangerously aligned the Obama administration is getting to the industry-cheerleading GOP.

Obama to conservatives (in both parties): I’ll give you coastal drilling, but I’m coming back for cap and trade “energy independence legislation,” so remember this gesture when I do.

From the New York Times:


… Under the plan, the coastline from New Jersey northward would remain closed to all oil and gas activity. So would the Pacific Coast, from Mexico to the Canadian border.

Under the plan, the coastline from New Jersey northward would remain closed to all oil and gas activity. So would the Pacific Coast, from Mexico to the Canadian border.

The environmentally sensitive Bristol Bay in southwestern Alaska would be protected and no drilling would be allowed under the plan, officials said. But large tracts in the Chukchi Sea and Beaufort Sea in the Arctic Ocean north of Alaska – nearly 130 million acres – would be eligible for exploration and drilling after extensive studies.

[…] The Senate is expected to take up a climate bill in the next few weeks – the last chance to enact such legislation before midterm election concerns take over. Mr. Obama and his allies in the Senate have already made significant concessions on coal and nuclear power to try to win votes from Republicans and moderate Democrats. The new plan now grants one of the biggest items on the oil industry’s wish list – access to vast areas of the Outer Continental Shelf for drilling. […]

This is a calculated and pragmatic political decision, mixing all the possible variables facing the President. It’s not progressive, but then Pres. Obama isn’t a progressive. If you thought he was you simply didn’t pay attention. Today’s decision is simply the energy version of what happened on health care.