Spill, Baby, Spill!

Following the Democratic rebuff of attempts to drill for oil in the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) Republicans began chanting “Drill, Baby, Drill.”  Indeed, it became a mantra of the climate change deniers, the Fox News Channel dimwits and the McCain/Palin campaign. 

Now we have clear evidence of how wrong they were.  (Imagine that!?)

A few months ago, an Alaskan pipeline burst, spilling tens of thousands of gallons of oil onto the Arctic tundra.   This follows another spill in 2006 that dumped an estimated 200,000 gallons of oil onto the tundra.  Indeed, it’s estimated that 500 oil spills occur in the Prudhoe Bay oil fields and along the Alaskan pipeline system each year.  But, if you were to listen to big oil and their Republican supporters, you’d think that oil spills are rare and insignificant. 

Just this past week, a BP oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico resulting in the potential for one of our nation’s largest oil spills and catastrophic damage to our environment.  The deep water well is currently leaking at the rate of 210,000 gallons a day and, if BP can’t close underwater valves, the leak could continue for up to 5 months!  Of course, big oil will likely be forced to pay for the damage.  But a few million dollars won’t act as much of a deterrent.  It certainly won’t restore the environment.  And don’t count on seeing the money anytime soon.  After all, it only took Exxon 16 years to fork over the money awarded to those whose livelihood was disrupted after the Exxon Valdez dumped an estimated 10.8 million gallons of crude oil on their shores.

Is it any wonder that many along the East Coast are concerned about President Obama’s recent decision to yield to pressure from Republicans and big oil to open more areas for off-shore drilling?

Truth is, we’re certain to see more damage to our environment from the decision.  Combined with the plastic “continents” now floating in both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, it may well contribute to the death of the most important natural assets on our planet – our oceans. 

Of course, we could minimize the damage and end our dependence on foreign oil by prioritizing renewable energy.  And we’d likely create thousands of high-paying jobs in the process.  Unfortunately, the renewable fuel industry doesn’t have the lobbyists big oil does.

© LaMaster Propaganda – All rights reserved.