House passes measure designed to encourage California lease buyback

The US House of Represenatives, on a 252-172 vote late July 17, approved a measure that seeks to prohibit new drilling activity on 36 undeveloped federal oil and gas leases off the California coast."This is a 1-year insurance policy for the Central (California) Coast," said Rep. Lois Capps (D-Calif.), a sponsor of the measure, in a written statement following the vote. "And it will spur long-overdue negotiations between the administration, the state, and oil companies on terminating the 36 leases. This tactic was effective in getting rid of oil drilling in and around Florida, and we expect the same results in California."The undeveloped leases are off Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Ve...

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