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Soundings Archive

Court Order Staying Shell 's Exploratory Drilling Program in Beaufort
On July 19, 2007, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an order temporarily staying Shell's exploratory drilling in the Beaufort Sea until the court decides some NGOs' motion to stay the MMS' approval of Shell's Exploration Plan in the Beaufort. Argument on the NGOs' stay motion is scheduled for August 14, 2007, in San Francisco.

The court's temporary stay order is not widely available. A copy of it from the court's docket is provided below:

"07-71457 Alaska Wilderness, et al v. Kempthorne

7/19/07 Filed order ( Mary M. SCHROEDER, Michael D. HAWKINS, Pamela A. RYMER, ) the Minerals Management Service's (MMS) 02/15/07 approval of Shell Offshore's Beaufort Sea Outer Continental Shelf Lease Exploration Plan is temporarily stayed pending resolution of Petitioners' Urgent Motions for Stay by the 9th CIR Motions Panel. Shell Offshore shall suspend its Beaufort Sea exploratory drilling program until such time. Vessels currently located in the Beaufort and Chuckchi Seas shall cease all operations performed in furtherance of that program, but need not depart the area. This matter will be resolved on an expedited basis. Oral argument is set for Tuesday, 08/14/07 in San Francisco, CA at 2:00 p.m. Each side will have 20 minutes for argument to allocate among themselves. The MMS shall file 5 certified copies of the complete administrative record before the Secretary of the Interior on or before Friday, 07/27/07. The parties shall file simultaneous letter briefs not to exceed 5 pages on the question whether this court has jurisdiction over this matter pursuant to 43 U.S.C. section 1349 or any other federal statue on or before Thursday, 07/26/07. SO ORDERED. (FAXED and E-MAILED TO PARTIES) [07-71457, 07-71989, 07-72183] (dv) [07-71457 07-71989 07-72183]"

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