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The world from dude's prospective. US politics, science and the environment, sports (mostly my beloved saints), and other worldy matters. After all, the dude abides....

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Environment - Bush renewing push to drill in Alaska

Another huge suprise.....The GOP thinks that they can pull the 52 votes needed to pass this as a budget measure, with the new makeup in Congress. Well that sure will help the energy crisis in the US. That is why I love this administration, they are long-term thinkers. The most generous estimates of oil depositories sitting under the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge are about 11 billion barrels, enough for two whole years of consupmtion in the US. So, we cause damage to a fragile ecosystem that could last for decades, for a couple of years worth of oil? Surely the oil companies will make enough money in Alaska to pass on a price break to the consumers......Oil companies and politicians are the only entities that stand to benefit from this action, period. Way to reach across party lines, it's already started again folks..

Oh yeah, and check out this little nugget of joy the AP slipped in at the end:

Despite the GOP's new strength, Senate Democrats can still put the brakes on energy measures they strongly oppose through filibusters such as the one that blocked an energy bill in 2003. The issue then in dispute was liability protection for makers of the MTBE gasoline additives, which have been found to contaminate water systems. However, given the stronger GOP majority, sustaining such filibusters may be more difficult.

Cause God knows that we have to protect the guys that manufacture contaminanting chemicals from being reponsible for producing contaminating chemicals. It only takes about 2ppb of MTBE to contaminate grounwater. Couple that with the fact that it does not readily break down or tie up with carbon compounds, and you have a serious problem. It is also a suspected carcinogen. A report released in 2003 showed that it already has affected at least 15 million people, with cleanup costs that could reach 29billion. Couple that with internal documents from the same oil companies we want to protect from lawsuits that state research definitively showing that MTBE is a serious threat to groundwater contamination, and you have a situation that stinks worse than the contaminated water.

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