Oct 12, 2010 8:32 PM by David Ortiviz

Salazar visits Vestas, lifts drilling ban

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is lifting the ban on deep water oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. The former U.S. Senator from Colorado spoke about the issue as he kicked off a national renewable energy tour on Tuesday. His first stop was the Vestas wind tower factory in Pueblo.

Salazar was on his home turf as he addressed a large crowd gathered at Vestas. "This is my home, these are my homies okay," said Salazar.

Salazar was on hand to celebrate the official grand opening of Vestas, which started production last year. "The world's largest wind tower manufacturing company located right here in Pueblo, in Southern Colorado, that is something to celebrate," said Salazar.

Vestas was Salazar's first stop in a nation wide renewable energy tour--but that announcement was overshadowed by news Salazar lifted the moratorium on deep water oil drilling in gulf. The ban was put in place after the gulf oil spill in April to give the government time to adopt new rules to make drilling safer. "Most companies that are good companies are going to be able to meet those requirements, and companies that are not going to be able to meet the requirements, then they should not be operating in the Gulf," said Salazar.

The lifting of the ban comes on the heels of an article in this month's Rolling Stone magazine--President Obama is asked why Ken Salazar didn't lose his job following the oil spill. The President talked about reforming the industry and says he told Salazar: "You're accountable, you're responsible." The President also says: "I have confidence that (Salazar) can change it, and I think he's in the process of doing so."

The ban on deep water oil drilling was set to expire on Nov. 30 but the Obama Administration was apparently under pressure to do it sooner.

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