Gaia: Turning Nature into Oil Fields
Posted by: souljah on Dec 07, 2002 - 07:25 PM
A few weeks ago, officials of the American Petroleum Institute met in Denver to discuss their chief goal for the new Congress: an energy bill that would open up public lands in the Rocky Mountain West to further oil and gas exploration.
At that meeting, the oil executives decided among other things to undertake a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign to convince voters in five Western states that new exploration in the Rockies would bolster their local economies while inflicting minimal damage on the environment. The campaign is timed to start early in the new year, just as Congress convenes with Republicans in control of both houses and eager to take up an energy bill. Around the country, businesses and industries that donated millions of dollars to elect Republicans are mapping out strategies to take advantage of the party's sweep in Washington. The White House was already sympathetic to business concerns, but with all of Congress now under Republican control, industry's expectations are higher. On Tuesday, for example, several power industry representatives are meeting here under the banner of the Edison Electric Institute, the lobby for electric utilities, to discuss the new lay of the land and what they may be able to achieve. A checklist of goals for the "extractive" industries — oil, gas, mining and timber — begins with a comprehensive energy bill. Provisions pushed by those industries and others would include $34 billion in tax incentives for an array of projects: to promote exploration and expansion, develop new technologies, increase the use of ethanol in gasoline, build a natural-gas pipeline in Alaska and limit the liability of the nuclear power industry in case of catastrophic accidents.
Much more here: