Ban on offshore Gulf coast drilling ends - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Ban on offshore Gulf coast drilling ends

DALLAS (AP) -- The end of a moratorium on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico has lifted the stocks of companies that operate the offshore oil and gas drilling rigs.  Shares of Transocean, Diamond Offshore and Ensco all gained more than 3 percent Tuesday.

The Obama administration lifted its moratorium on drilling in deep portions of the Gulf about six weeks ahead of schedule.  The oil industry lobbied to end the ban, which was put in effect after a rig used by BP exploded and triggered a massive oil spill.

Some drillers say the battle isn't over -- they're worried that government officials will remain slow to approve new drilling permits.

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