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Company can be ordered to drill to end 14-year-old oil leak

ARLINGTON, Va. — A federal regulatory board has ruled that a New Orleans company can be required to perform more underwater drilling and excavation work to end a 14-year-old oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Interior Board of Land Appeals refused to excuse Taylor Energy Company from requirements to permanently plug wells that could be leaking oil and gas. The board publicly released its Oct. 30 decision on Tuesday.

One week before the board ruled, the Coast Guard ordered the company to install a new containment system to capture and remove leaking oil until a permanent solution can be developed.

Government lawyers recently disclosed a new estimate that 10,500 to 29,400 gallons (39,747 to 111,291 litres) is leaking daily from the site where slicks often stretch for miles off Louisiana’s coast.

The Associated Press