How much would off shore drilling really help our energy problem? What would the negative consequences be?
A lot of talk about off shore drilling for oil "dig, baby dig" at RNC. But how much would it really help? How bad would it really be for animals, environment, or tap our reserves? I would love some additional info...Thanks!
Laurie; If the production is infinitesimal, the very thought that something can be done to eliminate the dependency on foreign oil is a step in the right direction. We have the brain power, the research facilities, the resources. Now all we need is positive direction which the Democrats have shown little desire to do. With leaders like Pelosi and Reed, what would you expect.
Offshore drilling would only work if we had the refinery space for the crude oil. As someone who lives in Louisiana a state which produces almost half of American drilled oil, I see first hand the heavy cost drilling does. The wetlands are dying so quickly, the thing that made oil billions of years ago is being wiped out a little over a football field a day. The Gulf of Mexico is a giant oil rig grave yard, There are also rigs just sitting there waiting to be used; since in the 1970's the federal government banned building more refineries due to health issues. Since many countries have a now huge middle class which is growing faster than the US like China & India, the demand for gas grows each day. Even if the US were to allow new refineries to be built it would take over 15 years before they could even be used. Since the cost would be insane to build a pipeline into the empty midwest from the Gulf, They have to be on the gulf coast. The same place many Americans felt & still feel is a waste of time to rebuild after Katrina also happens to be the same place much of the oil that does come from the US is. Even worse, even America's back up oil is kept here too.
The biggest benefit of drilling our own oil, is it would end, or greatly impact the hundreds of billions of dollars going to oil producing nations that hate us. Much of that money is used to finance terrorist organizations. We are also at the mercy of oil embargos, as we experienced in the 70's, which could threaten our economy. It also contributes to devaluing the dollar.
Another thing is China, Russia, and other oil users WILL drill off shore, if we won't. Today's technology allows them to drill horizontal. So you can drill in one spot, but extract oil from another. Like you could drill say in Alabama, but go horizontal, and get the oil from under Georgia. So we are at risk of other nations literally stealing oil from underneath us.
As for as the environment, there has not been a spill from any of the oil platforms in the Gulf. If fact, there was none spilled during Katrina. The oil pipeline in Alaska, built in the 70's, was built as to not restrict migration of caribou or others.
The negative consequences, would mainly be delaying or not pursuing alternative energy sources.
It would have virtually no impact on our energy problem or high gas prices. Bush's own Energy Information Administration said so. Oil companies already hold rights to drill on offshore land with an estimated 34 billion barrels of oil, and all we'd be adding is another 8 billion. It would make no difference whatsoever.
As for environmental impacts, that depends on where the drilling would happen. Hopefully even if we increase offshore drilling, it won't be allowed in environmentally sensitive areas. The biggest risk is if we put oil rigs in areas where there is a lot of hurricane activity, because that can lead to oil spills. But overall, I don't think the direct environmental impact would be significant.
The indirect impact, however, would be. It really makes me sad to see those Republicans chanting "drill baby, drill", because they clearly think that increased drilling is the solution to our problems. How they can possibly think that I don't know. Oil is a finite resource - even if we did have large amounts available offshore, we're going to run out sooner or later. The more we feed our addiction and the more we consume, the sooner it's going to run out. And then of course there's the environmental impact of burning oil - air pollution, ocean acidification, and of course global warming.
Anyone who thinks drilling is the solution to our problems (I'm looking at you, Sarah Palin) enough to chant "drill baby, drill" is in complete denial of reality. They're probably the same people who think humans aren't causing global warming (again, Sarah Palin). But we're not going to solve our problems by pretending they don't exist. I wish it were that easy.
oh common. are we still not getting the fact of OIL PEAK? what the?!
we need energy in a sustainable and very environment sensitive way and not those usual government "end-pipe+bad-aid" solutions.
the point of off shore drilling is so we don't have to rely on other countries, but truth is, where they want to drill wouldn't even have enough gas to last a year, so it isn't even worth it. it would also destroy wildlife. why use up all the gas in the world, when there is still gas left in other places? who cares who we support. we aren't going to be gaining any more support by not supporting other countries
It wouldn't provide and help the people and the environment in the long run. It's unfortunate that people nowdays are mislead and are taken in a direction that wouldn't really benefit this country and it's people. Ignoring the other alternatives because it isn't the easy way, and money isn't invoved. There is a man named T. Boone Pickens and he has an idea that can be important as far as an alternative, and off-shore drilling isn't one of them.
Its all about two of the seven deadly sins- Pride- showing other countries we can be independent. and Gluttony- we want more and more oil, we don't care if we are hurting the environment, we have to have cars right!!! and they have to look cool and go fast and use gas! It goes back to sloth too- we are lazy and have to drive everywhere, even the drug store right up the street....heaven forbid we get some exercise.
oh and the neg. would be that we would once again distroy animals homes for our own selfish needs. no biggie right...we already kill millions every year for our own consumption.
It could help stabilize the prices of oil somewhat. Lets face it unless the US government controlled the oil the prices will continue to go up. The people who stand to profit from the drilling are spending billions of dollars to make it seem like it will solve our problems, but the reality is oil is a finite resource and as the supply decreases the price will increase. In general oil drilling doesn't seem to be too bad for the environment if it is done right. The problem is a small spill can have devastating long term impact and the oil companies are never held accountable. Exxon has paid millions to lawyers and nothing to the people affected by the Valdez spill.
The only thing off shore drilling would do is continue our dependency on oil. A lot of people are saying it would lower our gas costs but that would not happen for years after the drilling starts. We need to put that money into alternative energies and get away from oil. All it would do is harm the environment and leave us in the same place we are right now.