Congress is back on the warpath to wrest ANWR from the public grip. Why?
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Exactly how much oil is there in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)? The answer to this question would seem to be an important factor in the debate regarding whether we should allow drilling for oil in the ANWR. One of the recommendations of Vice-President Cheney's energy task force was that drilling for oil be authorized in the Refuge. This recommendation has stirred up heated passions and split various constituencies for and against this possibility. In general, the Republicans, Alaskans, some unions that see job gains, and some native tribes that will profit from the drilling have come out in favor - while environmentalists, Democrats, some unions, and other native tribes have come out against. Following 9/11 this debate has resurfaced. Numbers are bandied about by both sides - those for drilling say that there is 30 years-worth of Saudi imports of oil available, and that drilling will enhance the national security and lessen dependence on imported oil (especially from the volatile Middle East.) Opponents say that the ANWR will supply less than 3% of US annual oil use, and that the price for drilling this small amount of oil will be the destruction of unspoiled land and the ANWR's flora and fauna.
Given this it would seem that a clear understanding of how much oil is estimated to be present, and recoverable, in the ANWR would be of some use. This OPED will look at the numbers in an effort to clarify the issue. It does NOT argue for or against drilling, nor does it look at the other factors that play into deciding for or against drilling, but ONLY considers the amount of oil present. For the other pros and cons visit these web sites or do a Google search on ANWR:
There isn't much left of the North American Commons, but the pirates of the Bush regime have declared open season on the remains.
My question is, why not save our own oil for the future when we really need it? We are in the process of stealing Iraq's oil, and there is plenty there for a long time. ANWR can wait-- it isn't going any where.
The answer would seem to be that the oil companies have no real intention to drill up there-- too expensive-- but they want to make sure that when it is drilled, the profits go to Big Oil and not to the people.