RSN Fundraising Banner
FB Share
Email This Page
add comment
Print

Redford writes: "Four years ago this week, BP's Deepwater Horizon drill platform exploded. Eleven workers died that day."

Actor and environmental activist Robert Redford. (photo: Contour/Getty Images)
Actor and environmental activist Robert Redford. (photo: Contour/Getty Images)


President Obama, Put the Arctic Off-Limits to Big Oil

By Robert Redford, Reader Supported News

17 April 14

 

our years ago this week, BP's Deepwater Horizon drill platform exploded. Eleven workers died that day. Their bodies were never found. Over the next 87 days, 210 million gallons of oil gushed into the Gulf of Mexico. It fouled fishing grounds, ravaged the coastline, and shut down tourism. The world got an ugly look at some of the terrible hidden costs of fossil fuels. Spill-related health problems plague the people and the wildlife of the Gulf to this very day.

I personally hoped that we, as a nation, would quickly learn from this tragedy and move swiftly to prevent a repeat disaster in our most vulnerable coastal environments. So it boggles the mind that Shell Oil is still determined to drill in one of the most fragile and remote ecosystems on Earth: the Arctic Ocean -- the last bastion of America's polar bears, endangered bowhead whales and other rare wildlife. For Native Alaskans who live along the coast, this ocean has been the source of their food security and a way of life since time immemorial.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWSLdRMFw5Q

 

It's sheer madness to drill in the Arctic -- in treacherous conditions of gale-force winds, 20-foot seas, sub-zero temperatures, shifting currents -- and for eight months of the year -- solid pack ice. If the oil industry was utterly unprepared for a blowout in the balmy Gulf of Mexico, how in the world can we trust them in a treacherous environment like the Arctic? Nobody knows how to clean up oil there, even during the open water season. And once the ice and long Arctic night close in, there'd be zero hope of plugging a blow-out or containing a spill.

Those harsh conditions also guarantee human and mechanical error. During a disastrous 2012 attempt at Arctic drilling, Shell Oil experienced fires, leaks, slipped anchors, emergency gear that was "crushed like a beer can," and a 30-mile iceberg that sent its ships fleeing.

A just-released Coast Guard report says Shell's reckless and failed attempt to tow its Arctic Ocean drill rig in 2012 was riddled with poor planning and judgment -- and involved numerous potential violations of the law.

Then, a couple of months ago, the Arctic caught a huge break. A federal appeals court ruled that in 2008, when the government approved drilling there, it wildly underestimated the risks of spills and other hazards. That has stopped all drill efforts for now. And it's created a golden opportunity for President Obama to chart a new course by putting the Arctic completely off-limits to Shell and every other oil company -- for good.

It also sets the president up to lead the fight against climate change. Left to their own devices, oil companies will drill and unleash every last bit of carbon-polluting crude they can get their hands on. Just two weeks ago ExxonMobil said it "takes the risk of climate change seriously," but that they'd go right on digging and burning all their oil reserves.

To be blunt, that is crazy talk. There's a clear scientific consensus that pumping that much carbon into the atmosphere will change life on Earth as we know it.

That's why I made this video, calling on all Americans to stand up to Big Oil by asking President Obama to ban oil drilling in the Arctic and lead the way to a future powered by 100% clean energy. Please make your own voice heard at www.DemandCleanPower.org. But don't delay. In a court filing last week, Shell indicated it's counting the days till it can get back into the Arctic. We have to make sure that never happens.

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner
 

Comments   

A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

 
+4 # Vardoz 2014-04-17 18:58
Because of Fukushima and Global Climate change life on Earth is facing extinction period end of story.

http://thetruthwins.com/archives/28-signs-that-the-west-coast-is-being-absolutely-fried-with-nuclear-radiation-from-fukushima
 
 
+1 # Nominae 2014-04-18 15:43
Quoting Vardoz:
Because of Fukushima and Global Climate change life on Earth is facing extinction period end of story.

http://thetruthwins.com/archives/28-signs-that-the-west-coast-is-being-absolutely-fried-with-nuclear-radiation-from-fukushima


Yeah ..... so let's all just roll over and die. Great response.
 
 
0 # motamanx 2014-04-18 07:02
If oil was used as a lubricant instead of a fuel, there would be plenty of it TO LAST FOREVER, without Keystone pipelines, without drilling in fragile areas, without wars.
 
 
+5 # Eliza D 2014-04-18 12:50
Thanks Robert Redford, for starting this campaign. Signed and wrote letter as well. I just hope there are some scientists somewhere that have discovered or will discover a way to reverse this damage,because as long as we have the bunch we do in office, the corrupt, earth-killing status quo will remain in force. Doesn't mean we shouldn't try anyway. No fracking, no Keystone, no nuclear power!
 
 
+1 # Nominae 2014-04-18 15:45
Quoting Eliza D:
Thanks Robert Redford, for starting this campaign. Signed and wrote letter as well. I just hope there are some scientists somewhere that have discovered or will discover a way to reverse this damage,because as long as we have the bunch we do in office, the corrupt, earth-killing status quo will remain in force. Doesn't mean we shouldn't try anyway. No fracking, no Keystone, no nuclear power!


Way to go, Eliza, if we're all going down, let's go down fighting - just for the hell of it.
 
 
0 # hwmcadoo 2014-04-20 03:14
Redford is correct but wasting his breath on Obama who listens onlY to the fat cats who speak with money, not the scientist who actually know.

Another example of what we get by voting for the lesser of evils. First they may not be a lesser evil and lesser evil is still evil. Better to waste a vote with a third part and still be able to look at yourself in the mirror.

At least you will not be responsible for the destruction to follow. with obama it sometimes is difficult to see how the republicans could be worse on the deep issues like entering wars, TPP, catering to business and personal rights and freedom.
 

THE NEW STREAMLINED RSN LOGIN PROCESS: Register once, then login and you are ready to comment. All you need is a Username and a Password of your choosing and you are free to comment whenever you like! Welcome to the Reader Supported News community.

RSNRSN