Coastal drilling, fossil fuels

By July 8, 2011

Regarding the Our View editorial of Wednesday, July 6, I’m just astounded that the conclusion drawn from the president’s release of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve is that the administration should “address the supply side by approving expanded drilling and exploration off America’s coasts.”

It appears that the writer has not been exposed to two crucial issues.

The first is that no amount of “expanded drilling” will solve the predicament of peak oil. This is well documented — even the International Energy Agency has admitted that we are probably past peak. Drilling in coastal waters would have at best a tiny effect on overall production, but would come with the possibility of further damage to the marine ecosystem.

The second, and perhaps more egregious, is that we simply cannot keep burning fossil fuels, no matter what effect this has on the economy! We are in the midst of a human-caused Great Extinction. Much of this is due to climate change, and the acidification of the oceans.

If we care at all what kind of world our grandchildren will inhabit, we must leave the remaining oil and coal in the ground, and begin to learn how to live a low-energy life.

Chris Lambert


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