Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Imagine This is Bristol Bay or the Chukchi Sea

Above is a NASA image of the rapidly growing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The image was taken late yesterday. Imagine it as happening in Bristol Bay. More importantly, imagine it as happening this time of year in the Chukchi Sea. You wouldn't see the oil. It would be under feet of ice. Dealing with this sill in the Gulf of Mexico, with hundreds of support vessels and perhaps a thousand skilled responders is proving pretty challenging, to say the least.

Yesterday I checked with the offices of both Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Sen. Mark Begich, on public statements about this spill. Sen. Begich has not yet made a statement. Sen. Murkowski, who, along with Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu (DINO), pushed hard in 2009 for the expansion of nearshore and offshore drilling that is now occurring nationwide, made a brief statement last week. Here's Sen. Murkowski's statement from April 22nd:

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today issued the following statement after learning that the Deepwater Horizon rig has sunk into the Gulf of Mexico:

I was dismayed to learn that the Deepwater Horizon rig has now sunk into 6000 feet of water in the Gulf of Mexico. We do not yet know how this development will affect the marine environment, but I understand all emergency spill response units in the Gulf have been mobilized.

My thoughts and prayers remain with the missing rig workers and their loved ones. They are our first priority.

My staff and I are receiving regular briefings from the Coast Guard, the Minerals Management Service and BP. I will continue to closely monitor this situation and I have offered the full resources of my office to aide all of those affected by this tragedy.

I'd like to see a statement from Shell Oil Company, on how they would deal with something like this in the Chukchi.

I'd like to see our Alaska press, or the Dispatch, which has some big bucks behind them, put some pressure on Shell regarding a similar scenario in the Chukchi.


Anonymous said...

Just wait until the oil (which I still hear the news agencies saying isn't from the well head itself-why do I have a problem believing that?) starts to hit the shrimping grounds and the oyster beds on the coastline.

You know, though I don't wish the tragedy of an oil spill on anyone, I am almost glad this happened at this time, in that place. Now the lower 48'ers will get a very big reminder on thier own home beaches on how hard it is to remove oil once it is released.

freeper said...

This oil spill, like the hundreds of oil spills before, won't cause any of the drones to suddenly sit up and take notice.

Begich will vacillate and try to straddle the fence, Murkowski doesn't give two hoots, never has, never will.

Shell will turn to it's public relations machine to churn out some soothing subterfuge.

And none of the big bucks will lift a finger to pressure anyone.

There was an oil spill, it's just another minor inconvenience to be either ignored, or smoothed over.

No one will take any more substantive action to prevent another one other than to momentarily claim to be thoroughly outraged, ....for a day or so.

A couple of three months down the road, it'll be all but forgotten. Static and passive lethargy will resume it's march towards submissive inaction.

In short, nothing much at all will change just because oil spills keep happening.

Too many people won't take any steps, personal or otherwise to wean themselves off of oil. Even fewer are willing to make the commitment and take even the barest of adequate steps to relieve the pressure to obtain the last of the supplies of oil.

Maintaining the status quo, propping up the failed infrastructure and failed culturally imprinted myths will continue apace until there is quite literally no more oil to be had.

Only then will much sitting up and taking notice be occurring.

Only after the last dollar can be squeezed out of the earth from oil.

Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it. And ignorance of history is on the ascension, aided by the increasing rejection of any lessons history might teach.

Think I'm off base ? Track your own consumptive habits. Be honest with yourself before you try to be dishonest with me and tell me I've got it all wrong.


nswfm said...

Happy 40th Birthday, Earth Day!

Washington Post: Gulf oil spill could be one of worst in US history, admiral says

But it's clean; it's safe!

Take it from me, someone who has lived down-current from the Santa Barbara platform that blew out in 1969 which inspired Earth Day since 1966, no it isn't.

sallyngarland,tx said...

Palin is coming to Dallas Friday. Some Texans don't want to hear Drill Baby Drill right now after this spill and loss of life--but Palin is so crude she will say it.

Erin McKittrick - Ground Truth Trekking said...

I've analyzed some of the Minerals Management Service's Environmental Impact Statements for offshore drilling in the Beaufort/Chukchi. In each case, they say that well blowouts are so absurdly unlikely that they do not even need to analyze a blowout scenario for environmental impact. Instead, their "worst case" spill is far smaller.
Of course, this type of spill is so unlikely that it has happened twice in the past year, both at new, modern facilities.

Anonymous said...

After federal investigations into the Mineral Management Service, it was found that employees, from the upper echelons on down, were taking bribes, sex, drugs, etc. from the oil companies.

Mineral Management, at this same period in time, issues a report favorable to the oil companies, downplaying actual risk to the environment ?

What did you expect from an organization whose employees were proven to be in the pocket of big oil ?


Anonymous said...

Yes, Anonymous, I'd reamain so if I were you, after saying you were glad it happened in the lower 48.

I would not put it past environmentalist to have sabbotaged the rig just so they could say things like that.

I only hope we can find this out if it is true.

Anonymous said...

It is the fault of environmentalists for making it illegal to get the oil from the shale closer inland.

Now they have this huge environmental tradgedy spread over miles and miles of ocean. It could have been easier contained than this rig that had to build their platform miles down into the ocean floor where the water pressure may have effected its stability and thereby causing this whole thing. That is, unless some kind of sabbatoge is found to be the real cause. It has been safe for a lot of years...Russia and other smart countrie will not stop drilling wherever there is oil...no matter what environmentalist say.

Anonymous said...

It's an instructive lesson when uneducated but thoroughly indoctrinated wingnuts choose to speak in public.

Of all the overly imaginative fears that are supposed to bring about our imminent destruction, those supposed fears pale in the face of the level of misinformed and ill-informed idiocy that's batted about as if any of it might have any substance.

America doesn't have to fear much of anything more than the fear we may 'stupid' ourselves to death, and the stupidest amongst us will be cheering for our demise, that death by 'stupid', with their every breath, even until they draw their last gasp.


Anonymous said...

anon @ May 1, 2010 3:56 PM and anon @ May 1, 2010 4:02 PM are express examples of those leading the cause of the utterly stupid.