Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Dangers of Offshore Oil Drilling...

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There has been much opposition to drilling in ANWR and offshore for fear of oil spills and damage to the environment. The Democratic party in Congress has been complaining that the "Oil Companies" are not drilling on the leased areas that they have already and do not need the areas of ANWR or offshore. It is reported that many of these potential drilling leases are being met by challenges in courts by environmental groups when it comes time for drilling so many of these leases are not being used...

Deroy Murdock has a great article describing the environmental history of the offshore drilling we now have and how safe it has been even considering a massive hurricane rolling thru the Gulf of Mexico...


"The technology of the drilling industry may have improved, but offshore drilling is a dirty business, and it still leads to oil spills due to failed equipment, aberrant weather, or human error on a frequent basis," Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said in July 19's Houston Chronicle.


"Feinstein is correct. U.S. offshore oil drilling is not perfectly tidy. It's only 99.999 percent clean. Indeed, since 1980 - as MMS figures indicate - 101,997 barrels spilled from among the 11.855 billion barrels of American oil extracted offshore. This is a 0.001 percent pollution rate. While offshore drilling is not 100.00 percent spotless, this record should satisfy all but the terminally fastidious.
Ironically, in terms of oil contamination, Mother Nature is 95 times dirtier than Man. Some 620,500 barrels of oil ooze organically from North America's ocean floors each year. Compare this to the average 6,555 barrels that oil companies have spilled annually since 1998, according to MMS."





A year or so back I read an article on how we spill more oil in the parking lots of all Wal*Marts in a week then we have spilled at the oil plants already in operation in Alaska. Looking at the oil spill in the above photo of a parking spot at a business in Augusta County, how much oil is spilled each day on the roads already? More then the 0.001% lost in offshore drilling?

Now multiple that "oil spill" shown in the above photo by the 8 parking spots in just this one local business parking lot..





5 comments:

Spank That Donkey said...

You're nailing it with this post... oil companies aren't into spilling their profits... they sell the stuff... and if it spills it costs a bundle to clean up....

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RightsideVA said...

Livemarket,

You have an interesting site and thanks for the comment. Living in Virginia we have a great opportunity to drill off our coast for known reserves and we were getting ready to do that but now President Obama has thrown a wrench into that. Our Virginia Gov is Tim Kaine who is now the chairman of the Democratic National Committee (At the same time as being Gov) so guess which way he is going with his support...

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately it is not how much is spilled but exactly 'where'. If oil tankers always sank into the Atlantic Trench (and then broke up) instead of depositing oil on hundreds of miles of coastline then no-one would notice, I agree.

Offshore drilling carries greater spillage risks but it is great that such oil recovery operations appear to have a pretty reasonable 'low-incidence' records. Let us not forget that deep-sea fishing is now the norm because many of the world's coastlines have been fished out, polluted and corrupted in a variety of ways. Corral reefs -- da-da. We DO need to manage risks and side-effects better.

Josh said...

Interesting Blog, but can you have you included in your number the 97% of all oil spills that are not required to be reported due to size?

I also agree with the previous post, that it is not how much per year, it is the concentrated amounts that devastate already fragile coastal environments.

Is it really in the planets best interest to lift offshore drilling bands so the U.S. will be able to drill efficiently in ten years when in twenty years we will have cause permanent damage to the Arctic ice shell? We can't continue to overlook global warming by finding ways to minutely lower gas prices. We need to be finding alternatives to oil, instead of wasting time increasing our dependency on a NON-RENEWABLE resources.