For Immediate Release
Kirsten Stade (202) 265-7337
Buy MMS Mementos Before It Is Too Late
Auction of MMS Knick-Knacks as Successor Agency Struggles with Its Acronym
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Minerals Management has become so infamous through the BP
oil spill that the Obama administration decided to break up the former
agency into fragments, each with a new name. Last week, the largest
MMS fragment was officially renamed the Bureau of Ocean Energy
Management Regulation and Enforcement, responsible for both leasing and
environmental and safety reviews.
Now there is
confusion as to what to call the new agency with its convoluted title,
according to internal e-mails released today by Public Employees for
Environmental Responsibility (PEER). In introducing himself to the
staff on June 21, the new director Michael Bromwich indicated that
henceforth the agency would be known as BOE. Days later, on June 25,
James Anderson, the agency's Acting Associate Director for
Administration & Budget, sent out the following e-mail under the
tab "Importance: High":
"Please be advised that BOE should not be used as the abbreviation for
the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management Regulation and Enforcement.
Until further notice the abbreviation BOEMRE should be used.
Administration Division Chief's and Program Chiefs of Staff have been
included on this message so as they can disseminate this information to
the appropriate points of contact." [Emphasis in original]
about fiddling while the Gulf dies--the new 'reform' leadership is
having high-level meetings to decide which acronym to use. Hardly a
promising beginning," stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, whose
organization has contended that the MMS break-up papers over deeper
dysfunctions within the Interior Department, the MMS parent agency.
"Best I can tell the thinking behind choosing the most ponderous and
unwieldy acronym possible is to discourage future media coverage. The
truer acronym, therefore, should be BORE, as in 'People, there is no
story here; this is just a BORE'."
As the Interior
Department is trying to erase any sign that MMS ever existed, PEER
today began auctioning off MMS knick-knacks donated by employees to
commemorate the agency's passing. Auctioned items include MMS safety
whistles, oil drop paperweights, embossed lunch bags, computer cases,
pen sets and other never-to-seen-again bureaucratic flotsam.
"The abolition of MMS is like the governmental equivalent of Enron's
collapse. These kitschy souvenirs exhibit a blithe cluelessness that
helps explain the agency mindset," Ruch added, urging buyers to act
while limited supplies last. "For example, what was the focus of the
2009 Safety Week at MMS? Well, if you guessed diet conscious snacks,
you would be correct."
Today PEER also wrote to BOEMRE Director Michael Bromwich urging him
not to destroy the mountains of other MMS memorabilia (coffee cups,
windbreakers, flashlights, etc.). The materials should be recycled or
donated to charity. PEER has offered to hold future auctions.
Join the auction for MMS memorabilia before they are sold out
View the internal e-mails about what acronym to use for the new agency
Read PEER letter to BOEMRE Director asking him not to destroy the relics of MMS
Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) is a national alliance of local state and federal resource professionals. PEER's environmental work is solely directed by the needs of its members. As a consequence, we have the distinct honor of serving resource professionals who daily cast profiles in courage in cubicles across the country.