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President Obama Announces Offshore Drilling

President Obama made his announcement at Andrews Air Force Base, because he thinks energy policy is tied to the country's security.

"We're announcing the expansion of offshore oil and gas exploration," said President Obama.

The White House is going to end a 20-year ban, and allow companies to build platforms 50-miles off Virginia's coast. Drilling will still be banned along the west coast.
And, some planned drilling in Alaska's Bristol bay will be canceled. But, the President insisted its about more than drilling for new oil.

"This announcement is part of a broader strategy that will move us from an economy that runs on fossil fuels and foreign oil to one that relies more on homegrown fuels and clean energy," said President Obama

The president's decision is an attempt at compromise. But, neither side likes it.
Some conservatives argue it doesn't do enough to create new energy and new jobs.
Some liberals fear it will hurt the environment.

"This is still a dirty business that has both routine pollution from leaks and spills of oil or chemicals they use on the rigs to the threat of a catastrophic spill," said Athan Manuel.

The debate over drilling is happening outside the White House, too.

"If we start with one area it's just going explode and it's going to be an open season for doing that,"said Rachel Silverman, Illinois Resident.

"Why not? It's here, it's for our use. It's natural resources we have. It's fabulous,"said Kathleen Curtis, an Ohio resident.

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