Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Offshore drilling in Alaska

There is a heavy debate going on right now. Go to C-SPAN2 to watch for yourself.

All republicans with some democrats, the supporters of this legislation, which is being attached, in a very sneaky way, to the national budget, are arguing that we are in a "national energy crisis" and how expensive does oil have to get before we acknowledge said crisis and do something about it, namely opening up a wildlife refuge to oil drilling.

As you can see in The Washington Post article, that only by 2025 will we be able to pump 1 million barrels a day, which only matches what we import now not even by half.

This makes critics like me wonder what in the hell we're doing this for if we won't be able to match what we import even after 20 years. Why screw with an entire ecological system just for 1 million barrels when we could have sunk all that money into coming up with a better way to use our natural resources? We know the technology is there because hybrid cars have been popping up all over the place. We know solar energy could work if its technology was improved upon.

During the debate, Senator Boxer (gotta love her, wish she were my Senator) made some good points. What about the reckless attitudes of the drillers themselves? Oil leaks from drilling barges are known to happen, what will happen to the animals, water, etc., when that happens? Do the ends really justify the means? She zinged my wonderful Senator Allen for his comment that the place where they want to do the drilling being "the dark side of the moon." She put up an enlarged picture of some artic animals such as a polar bear and said something like, "Well, as you can see, it doesn't look much like the dark side of the moon to me."

Huh. You go girl.

Senator Trent Lott is speaking now and he can't even get it straight as to what they want to drill for "up there." He said that if he were to put any pictures up here, he'd put those of his grandchildren. Then he goes on to angrily state that we need to produce more oil, natural gas, coal, etc. as well as conservation efforts and alternative fuels. He also says that "his state will have oil."

Lott says that he is angry at this congress and the previous congress, and even the American people, for fighting this issue. Whatever.

Senator Maria Cantwell layed out, with many facts backing her up, how we should be fixing what we've already got instead of increasing our overall supply. She states that the language of the current legislation does not guarantee a decrease in gas prices or that it will even stay in the United States. Good point.

Oh, something funny. Senator Trent Lott pronounced Venezuela as "Ven-zu-way-la." Hah, priceless!

So, if you wanna help get the word out that most Americans are not for the drilling, go to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), send some letters, sign a petition or two, and let those that matter know you are not in agreeance with this neglectful and untruthful piece of legislation.

And while you are at it, check out this article from Common Dreams. You will be amazed how this has been happening for so long and still, no major news reports on it. *sigh*

Update: All that listening for nothing; they voted 51-49 to open Alaska up to drilling, which they say could give them 10.9 billion barrels. They fail to tell you that it will take 20 years to get the first million.

Also in the papers, at least mine anyway, is that the citizens of the towns and villages are now "on their toes." They want to be the first person in line when the rules are made and I don't blame them. However, I do not have much faith in my coorporate hungry American "friends."