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Posted by JRM on January 23, 2001 at 20:26:00:

In Reply to: Oil drilling off No. Cal? posted by Eric Sedletzky on January 20, 2001 at 23:15:05:

The Santa Barbara Channel rigs (six years ago when I did a paper on the subject) total yearly production equals less than one day of US consumption. Yet they are there.

Personally, I know only enough about the oil business to be dangerous. Getting my degree in Geology it was difficult not to be seduced into the petroleum arena. They've got all the best toys, and the best pay. However, since I didn't want (or my now-wife then girlfriend/fiancee didn't want) me to spend six months of the year in BFE, I ended up keeping my job as a professional geek.

But I really don't see why the psuedo-environmentalists don't allow horizontal boring from the shore. It's a whole heck of a lot safer, and quite economical, especially if the targets are less than 20,000 feet offshore.

For personal definition, I consider a "psuedo-environmentalist" as one who can't see the "big picture". Take electric cars now, how much fossil fuel is required to generate the electricity to power them. And with the current lead-acid battery technology that's used in them, where do the batteries go (they have to be replaced every couple of years)? Issues are much more complex than lots of them would have you believe. Don't even get me started on mining :-)

Here is something I dug up when I was researching my SB paper for my economics of natural resources class: One of the oil companies, in order to garner pollution credits, placed a bunch of pyramidal traps above major tar seeps. Not only were they able to utilize the resource, but they talked the EPA into giving them pollution credits (sort of polluting in reverse).

Besides, the most spill-prone segment of the entire petroleum cycle is transportation. Yet it took the Valdez to get double-walled tankers mandated.


--Arrgh! It's late and I'm stuck here at work. You know, bosses should be banned from going to conferences or reading promotional literature. Once they get it in their head that something is "the way to go" it is impossible to convince them otherwise.

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