Louisiana lawmakers testified recently that new federal drilling safety regulations will severally raise costs and reduce competitiveness, NOLA Media reported.

The new regulations have been set by the US Federal government and are meant to prevent incidents like the 2010 explosion and leaking of the rig Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Interior Department says it expects the stepped up safety to cost companies roughly $880m over the next ten years, but industry trade groups say the real cost is actually much higher, around $32b.

Critics of the new rules say it shows how out of touch the federal government is with local businesses.

“This administration’s energy policy appears to have two objectives: cause Louisianans to lose their jobs and continue our dependence on foreign oil,” Republican Representative Garrett Graves, stated.

“The first and foremost concern I have is you’ve got folks sitting in an ivory tower writing these regulations that have no understanding of what’s actually happening on the ground,” Graves continued.

UPI noted that no democrats were present at the hearing recently held to discuss the regulations, but prominent Republicans known for their oil and gas advocacy were in full force.

“Federal regulations such as the proposed well-control threaten another moratorium by shutting down the majority of the Gulf rig fleet,” said Randall Luth, President of the National Ocean Industries Association.

A new bid round is expected to be issued early next year. The potential blocks for action hold an estimated 895m barrels of oil and 4 tcf of gas.