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Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today that no offshore oil drilling will be allowed off the coast of Virginia for at least the next seven years. This announcement reversed an earlier Obama administration decision to open certain parts of the American coastline to drilling, including off the Atlantic Coast of Virginia.

Senator Warner is disappointed in the decision, and our office issued the following statement in response to the announcement:

“Mid-Atlantic coastal oil and gas production does not represent a ‘silver bullet’ solution to our energy challenges, and while it is appropriate to take the time to incorporate lessons learned from the Gulf disaster, Senator Warner sees no reason to delay this process for what realistically could be another seven years or more.

“Senator Warner will continue to work with Governor McDonnell and other state and local officials, as well as the bipartisan Virginia delegation, to explore ways to re-examine this decision.”