Old 07-30-2010, 09:06 AM
Senior MemberCaptains Club Member
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Goodland, Florida
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I have advocated and defended offshore drilling for some time and I still do. Off of Florida, and whereever else there is oil. Right after the BP spill, somebody on the FS Forum pulled up some of my old posts on the subject to challenge my thinking.

My reply from 8 weeks ago:

I still stand by everything I wrote. There are over 5,000 wells operating in the gulf alone, about 600 as deep or deeper than the BP well, for decades, and hardly a drop ever spilled prior to now. What that tells me is that a whole lot of folks in the industry have done a whole lot right for a long time. The entire industry will learn from this accident, which is unprecedented in many ways.

This is a terrible accident no doubt, and it will cost BP big time, as it should, but we are a long way from really knowing the environmental impact. Do not underestimate the compulsion of newscasters and politicians to characterize this as the worst ecological disaster in the history of the universe. It could turn out to be as bad as that......or not. There have been other spills, and what we know is that nature recovers over time. The 1979 spill was many orders of magnitude greater. What is the impact today? There was one off the Texas coast years ago--what is the status of that oil damage? There is a place on the coast of California where there is a natural seep of crude oil into the Pacific at the rate of over thousands of gallons annually. In fact, by a large margin, most of the oil that ever gets into the ocean, gets there from natural processes.


That of course does not diminish the real hardship caused to the LA & ALA coast from business interruption, which is causing acute economic harm, and damage claims, but we still need to keep the entire event in perspective.

Maybe while we are contemplating that we should also consider that nature will NEVER recover from the damage done to pristine areas by people, like most of us here, who want to build nice seaside vacation homes, excavate canals, destroy natural coastal vegetation and wildlife habitat, all just so they can indulge their hobbies. It will never recover that is, as long as we humans insist on enjoying life as we do. Our right to that enjoyment is not more important than supplying the rest of the country and the world with energy.