On Fox News, Bolling repeats offshore drilling falsehoods

››› ››› JEREMY HOLDEN

Fox Business Network's Eric Bolling asserted that, according to offshore oil "drillers" with whom he had spoken, "China was probably drilling offshore, very close to our shore through Cuba, and taking some of that oil that -- that honestly could -- could and should be helping our situation." His assertion that China was drilling "very close to our shore" echoed a claim made by Vice President Dick Cheney -- citing columnist George Will -- that both Cheney and Will have since corrected.

During the July 1 edition of Fox News' Your World, Fox Business Network contributor Eric Bolling asserted that, according to offshore oil "drillers" with whom he had spoken, "China was probably drilling offshore, very close to our shore through Cuba, and taking some of that oil that -- that honestly could -- could and should be helping our situation." The assertion that China was drilling "very close to our shore" echoed a claim made by Vice President Dick Cheney -- citing nationally syndicated columnist George Will -- in a June 11 speech to the United States Chamber of Commerce that both Cheney and Will have since corrected.

On June 12, the Associated Press reported that "Vice President Dick Cheney's office acknowledged on Thursday that he was mistaken when he asserted that China, at Cuba's behest, is drilling for oil in waters 60 miles from the Florida coast." The AP further reported: " 'There is no actual drilling yet. ... There is exploration,' said Johanna Mendelson-Forman, a senior fellow on energy and Latin America at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. She said China's oil company, Sinopac, has conducted exploratory drilling on a lease on land in western Cuba, but is not involved in the offshore development." Additionally, in his June 17 syndicated column, Will noted, "In a previous column, I stated that China, in partnership with Cuba, is drilling for oil 60 miles from the Florida coast. While Cuba has partnered with Chinese companies to drill in the Florida Straits, no Chinese company has been involved in Cuba's oil exploration that close to the United States."

Bolling also falsely suggested that only unnamed "[w]ebsites" are claiming that it would take more than 10 years to retrieve oil from offshore sites currently covered by executive and congressional moratoriums on offshore drilling. Bolling stated: "I'm getting emails, bombarded. Websites are saying, you know, we are perpetuating a lot -- we're not. I talked to oil companies. I talked to drilling companies because I did not want to be accused of saying, 'Hey, you're talking to the oil industry, and what else are they going to say.' I went to the drillers themselves. I went to Trans Ocean. I went to Diamond Offshore. I went to two or three other drillers. And they said, clearly, number 1, we can get that oil in a much shorter time frame than the 10 years -- some said up as close as one year." In fact, in addition to "[w]ebsites," in its Annual Energy Outlook for 2007, the Energy Department's Energy Information Administration considered the likely effects of allowing the existing congressional and executive moratoriums on certain off-shore drilling to expire in 2012 and stated: "The projections in the OCS [Outer Continental Shelf] access case indicate that access to the Pacific, Atlantic, and eastern Gulf regions would not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices before 2030. Leasing would begin no sooner than 2012, and production would not be expected to start before 2017."

From the July 1 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto:

ALEXIS GLICK (guest host): You know something. You and I keep talking about is -- we keep talking about offshore drilling -- looking for more here, and with some controversy. There is a new -- recent Pew poll, Eric, that says 47 percent of Americans say it's more important to look for our own oil then to deal with climate change right now. Now, two different topics here, but Americans are getting frustrated.

BOLLING: You know, I came on here a couple of times with you, Alexis, and since then I'm getting emails, bombarded. Websites are saying, you know, we are perpetuating a lot -- we're not. I talked to oil companies. I talked to drilling companies because I did not want to be accused of saying, "Hey, you're talking to the oil industry, and what else are they going to say."

I went to the drillers themselves. I went to Trans Ocean. I went to Diamond Offshore. I went to two or three other drillers. And they said, clearly, number 1, we can get that oil in a much shorter time frame than the 10 years -- some said up as close as one year. Almost all of them said no later than six years, but unequivocally across the board they all said that China was probably drilling offshore, very close to our shore through Cuba, and taking some of that oil that -- that honestly could -- could and should be helping our situation.

GLICK: All right, Eric Bolling, thank you very much. Let's hope it doesn't get a lot worse. The rhetoric alone is scary.

Posted In
Environment & Science, Drilling
Network/Outlet
Fox News Channel
Person
Eric Bolling
Show/Publication
Your World w/ Neil Cavuto
Stories/Interests
Gas Prices
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