From Jim Hamilton

In January 2008, ExxonMobil and Norway’s Statoil announced a promising discovery in the Julia Field in the Gulf of Mexico that may contain a billion barrels of oil. In October of that year, Exxon applied for a 5-year extension of the lease for time to develop a suitable development plan. To the company’s surprise, the U.S. Department of Interior denied the request in February 2009, and has continued to turn down subsequent appeals.

Hamilton goes on to suggest that there are currently 10 idle rigs in the gulf representing at least 10,000 jobs in mining that could be filled.

Besides the obvious desire to not approve another Deep Water Horizon on their watch does anyone have an explanation for this?