|What made it necessary to drill for oil at 5000 feet of ocean depth?
Here's a post from Steve Malley at Red State about the "ham sandwich" indictment of a British Petroleum engineer involved in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon disaster. The Deepwater Horizon, as you'll recall, was an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico that exploded and caused a major oil leak in the Gulf.
The prosecution of the engineer (who had nothing to do with the explosion or spill itself) is a fine example of prosecutorial zeal, probably excessive, but it's just the pretense for a post I've been meaning to write for a while.
Here's the post I've been meaning to write:
Why was the Deepwater Horizon in deep water?
Huh?, you say. This is why it matters.
Ever since the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill, near-shore drilling for oil near the continental U.S. has been heavily regulated by environmental laws, and in many places effectively banned. In order to obtain oil offshore, oil companies have had to build their rigs far out at sea, in deep water. The Deepwater Horizon was in 5000 feet of water. Capping it took three months. Yet there is oil available in shallow water near the coast-- in shallow water, where capping an oil leak is much safer, easier, and faster.
Oil rig accidents are inevitable. They're going to happen, despite the best precautions, regulations, etc. In the real world, accidents happen.
So why require oil rigs to drill in deep water, where blowouts of oil wells are so much more difficult to stop?
If the Deepwater Horizon had been the Shallowwater Horizon, the work to stop the leak could have been done in 50 feet of water, not 5000 feet. Much quicker, much safer.
The nutcase environmental regulations that force us to drill for oil in the deep ocean are what made the Deepwater Horizon spill so catastrophic.
Another example of the deep responsibility of environmentalists for environmental disasters is the Exxon Valdez oil spill. in 1989 the oil tanker Exxon Valdez ran aground in Prince William Sound in Alaska, spilling 10 million gallons of oil into the water.
Environmentalists went berserk, naturally, but a cogent analysis of the spill would begin with this question: why were we transporting Alaskan oil by ship anyway?
From Investors Business Daily:
[The] Exxon Valdez disaster... was also ironically made possible by a desire to protect the environment.
The original plan when oil was discovered at Prudhoe Bay on Alaska's North Slope was to build a pipeline directly to the northern border of the 48 contiguous states. Groups like the Sierra Club waged a major battle against both the Prudhoe Bay development and the pipeline.
They lost on the drilling but won a small victory in forcing the pipeline to not traverse the continent via a safer land route but to dead end at the port of Valdez, Alaska. The rest, as they say, is history.
But for the Sierra Club and other environmentalist wackos, the oil from Prudhoe Bay on the North Slope would never have been on a ship in Prince William Sound. A land pipeline would have been much safer, and would have prevented the environmental disaster.
But environmental policy in this country is not driven by good sense and accountability. The environmental regulations that contribute to environmental disasters are never questioned, and the green loons who peddle them are never called to account. The mainstream media covers for these bastards.
Search the internet in vain for any consistent account of the role that radical environmentalists play in causing environmental disasters.
Stupid arrogant counterproductive unaccountable policies are the best that radical environmentalists do. The worst thing they do-- and they do a lot of it-- is genocide.