Here's Rachel Maddow last week, having a conversation with an anthropomorphic personification of human malevolence known as Bureau of Ocean and Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement director Michael Bromwich. (Seriously, the dude is grim. Does the Bureau not have a magical nonthreatening pansexual spokesthing they can send out to talk to the media?) Bromwich had some scary things to say about the recently-rekindled deepwater permitting process. Among other things, he doesn't know nor apparently particularly care why drilling in U.S. waters has such a relatively high fatality rate.
On whether blowout preventers can prevent blowouts:
No one in our agency, and certainly not me, has ever suggested that these are failsafe devices.
On new "fast" containment technology that could still take 17 days to control a spill:
You're right, 17 days is not fabulous, but 17 days is a lot better than 87 days.
On issuing permits before ensuring that blowout preventers can actually prevent blowouts, which again, they cannot:
For a long time, air bags could not deal with side impacts. Did that mean that we pulled off all the cars off the road? Pending getting better airbags? No, it didn't.
On why an oil rig worker is four times more likely to die when working in U.S. waters than in Europe:
Do I have any explanation for what? For the higher incidence of fatalities here? … No. No, I don't.
'Not fabulous' still good enough for drilling permits, Maddow Blog.