Several companies say the Obama administration is ignoring a judge's decision to strike down a six-month ban on deepwater drilling.
Attorneys for the oilfield service companies said in court papers Wednesday that Salazar's comments have had a chilling effect on the resumption of drilling.
It's not yet clear whether DOI or USCG have prevented the movement of any vessels or ordered rigs to return to port.
UPDATE: Reuters has more:
"Secretary Salazar's comments have the obvious effect of chilling the resumption of OCS (Outer Continental Shelf) activities, which is precisely the wrong this court sought to redress through its preliminary injunction order," the companies said in their request to Feldman filed on Wednesday.
Obama administration officials "have chosen to ignore and disobey it," they said.
They asked Feldman to order the administration to "refrain and cease and desist from any additional effort to continue their enforcement of the moratorium."
The companies asked the judge to hold an emergency hearing as soon as possible
I'm leaving the headline as is--being accused of "ignoring and disobeying" a court order is the same as being accused of violating it.
But it's also likely that no on-the-ground officials have given verbal or written instructions stopping the plaintiffs from resuming pre-moratorium activities. Also, given the uncertainty associated with the appeals process, it's not likely that Andarko, Noble, Shell and others are mobilizing their deepwater assets back to their prospect holes yet. The plaintiffs--oilfield services companies--essentially want Judge Feldman to issue a gag order to Secretariat Salazarovich. He's running around Senate Committee rooms talking about a moratorium that's "in place," and such language, according to the plaintiffs, is keeping their clients in port and keeping their boats in port by extension.
Should be an interesting day tomorrow.
Gimme some feedback in the comments.