BUSH ORDERS CANCELLATION OF EIGHT CONTROVERSIAL OFFSHORE LEASE SALES

President Bush last week canceled eight contested offshore lease sales, preventing any drilling in those areas until after 2000. Due to state opposition, lawsuits, and congressional spending moratoriums, there was little prospect of holding those sales as scheduled. The administration's action limits oil companies to exploration in the Gulf of Mexico, off Alaska, in the mid- and South Atlantic, and in a small area off southern California during this decade.

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