Save the Ocean! Stop Offshore Oil Drilling Now!
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For years offshore oil drilling has been one of America’s key sources of energy. The process of offshore oil drilling involves drilling into the seabed in hopes of extracting oil and natural gas from the earth. This extracted oil is usually found in rocks that are located beneath the seabed. Countries around the world have practiced offshore oil drilling for years and depend greatly on it as a source of energy to propel development.
In the United States, there are over 5,600 offshore drilling platforms in operation. Each platform facilitates the production of large amounts of petroleum products. While the practice of offshore drilling may have economic benefits, its environmental drawbacks, such as harming marine ecosystems and ruining the quality of marine life, are too great to ignore for any longer.
The negative effects of offshore oil drilling need to be addressed immediately. By fully understanding the processes, and environmental impacts of offshore oil drilling society can work to eliminate the environmental hazards caused by offshore oil drilling.
A healthy ocean is crucial for both marine life as well as the cities and towns along the coast that rely on the ocean for food as well as tourism. As long as oil drilling continues such communities will continue to be in danger, and the only way to circumvent the risks associated with offshore oil drilling is to stop the practice altogether. Oil spills have far-reaching effects and can affect Ocean life across the planet. The Gulf of Mexico’s Loop Current, for example, enables an oil spill in the Eastern Gulf to reach the Florida panhandle as well as a variety of other parts of Florida. Various Oceanic currents, like the Loop Current, have the ability to carry spilled oil for hundreds of miles away from the original site of the spill. Not only will an oil spill harm the immediate area around the spill, but such currents enable the spills to have adverse effects in oceanic communities far away from the spill site. Not only can spills travel great lengths across the ocean, current cleanup methods are inadequate.
A single drilling platform drills anywhere between 70-100 wells and in the process expels over 90,000 metric tons of drilling fluids and metal cuttings into the ocean. Such drilling fluids and cuttings go on to hurt the immediate wildlife as new elements are added to their ecosystem. Another way in which the process itself harms the natural environment is through Produced Water. Produced water is defined as fluid previously trapped underground that is brought up during the extraction process, and such fluid contains 30-40 ppm of oil which means for 2 billion gallons of produced water there are 70,000 gallons of oil to go along with it. It is clear that the only way to eliminate the risks of offshore oil drilling is to place a ban on its practice effective immediately, as seen in the US for over 25 years.
For over 25 years US coastlines and oceans were protected by offshore oil drilling by way of moratoriums enacted by Presidents Bush and Clinton in the 1990s until President George W. Bush killed such moratoriums in 2008 amid high international gas prices, and election year pressures. This shows how extremely complex of an issue this is in that the multi-billion dollar energy companies, as well as the general public have vested interest in the issue.
One of the most recent events regarding offshore drilling was the former President Barack Obama taking out large leases in the Arctic from the five-year drilling plan that he signed off on. This act will prevent President Trump from gaining access to these waters for offshore oil drilling. Obama’s decision to take action in this manner right before he left office sends a very strong message that he does not want offshore drilling to exist any more than it has to, and has intentionally slowed down Trump and his administration in their race for oil.
Please vote to help the Oceanic Preservation Society campaign against the practice of offshore drilling!
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