At its 2011 annual meeting in New Orleans, the Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association honored Louisiana Department of Natural Resources Secretary Scott Angelle with its Blue Heron Award for his fight to resurrect the state’s offshore oil and gas industry following the Deepwater Horizon incident last year. Angelle has been the state’s most visible public official in fighting the Obama administration’s moratorium on offshore exploration, and today’s award indicates the possible strength of support he might be able to count on from the oil and gas industry if and when he declares his candidacy for a statewide office this fall.
LMOGA’s Blue Heron Award recognizes exceptional environmental stewardship in association with oil and gas activity as well as the unique efforts of the recipient to address the compatibility of the industry with environmental progress.
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declared Angelle a worthy recipient for the award.
“Scott has been a warrior for our people and our coast,” said the Governor. “He has fought tirelessly to help get our people back to work after the federal government implemented a job-killing deepwater drilling moratorium and a de facto moratorium on shallow water drilling. That’s why we made Scott our point man with the federal government so he could cut through the red tape and get permits flowing again so we can help fuel America and put our people back to work.”
Angelle played a key role in coordinating response efforts to preserve and protect Louisiana’s coast in the wake of the spill. The secretary was instrumental in communicating to the country the economic hardships caused by the drilling moratorium and the importance of the Gulf of Mexico energy industry to Gulf Coast communities and the entire nation.
Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association, founded in 1923, is a trade association promoting and representing all sectors of the oil and gas industry operating in Louisiana and the Gulf of Mexico. LMOGA serves exploration and production, refining, transportation, marketing and mid stream companies as well as other firms in the fields of law, engineering, environment, financing and government relations.
With the LMOGA honor and what can be assumed as strong support from the organization’s membership, Angelle’s stock as a statewide candidate for this fall’s elections continues to rise. Speculation has it that Angelle, whose campaign finance disclosures revealed a war chest of some $360,000 at the end of 2010, will seek the Secretary of State job currently held by Tom Schedler after Jay Dardenne won a special election for Lt. Governor last year. Democrats Caroline Fayard, who has been rumored as a possibility for Attorney General and Governor in addition to State, and Joel Chaisson have also been mentioned as potential candidates. Republican state representative Walker Hines, a former Democrat like Angelle, has already announced his candidacy for the Secretary of State job.
Also at the organization’s annual meeting, ExxonMobil was presented with the 2011 Pelican Award – an honor recognizing outstanding achievement and commitment to the oil and gas industry, the community, the environment and to Louisiana.
“ExxonMobil has invested billons of dollars in Louisiana and its people,” said Chris John, president of LMOGA. “The tremendous positive benefits to the Louisiana economy and to the prosperity of its citizens – irrespective of whether they are directly employed by ExxonMobil – are incalculable. Indeed, the history of Louisiana and ExxonMobil has been inextricably intertwined for more than 100 years and, quite frankly, it is hard to imagine one without the other.”