The Worst Oil Spill in U.S. History, and It’s Still Business As Usual?
Secretary Salazar Needs to Close Atlantis Today, or Get Out of the Way!

June 14, 2010

Dear Supporter,

“Salazar is basically rearranging the chairs on the deck of the Titanic.”

Former Interior Secretary Bruce Babbit said this of U.S. Interior Secretary Salazar today, and we’ve found it to be true. The first official response to Food & Water Watch’s request for a federal court order to shut down BP’s Atlantis oil rig has shown little has changed under Salazar’s leadership. Tell President Obama that Salazar should either close Atlantis today, or get out of the way.

We notified the Minerals Management Service over a year ago that BP Atlantis was missing 89 percent of its necessary safety documents. Even though missing documents are at the heart of many BP disasters, including the current one, MMS still refuses to close Atlantis until it can be proven safe. In an official response last week, the agency even admitted that they have done no meaningful investigation and even though we’re facing the worst oil spill in U.S. history, MMS continues to issue permits to BP for deepwater oil drilling.

The inability to close a rig that is operating without any evidence of safety, especially in light of the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe, makes us think that Secretary Salazar is serving oil interests, not the public interest. It seems to be business as usual under his leadership, despite heavy-handed rhetoric to the contrary.

President Obama should demand his resignation and find someone who will regulate the oil industry—starting with shutting down BP Atlantis until it is proven safe.

Thanks for taking action,

Sarah Alexander

Outreach Director
Food & Water Watch

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