Posted by covediver on April 09, 2007 at 08:57:44:|
In Reply to: Clashing Views At The Rigs To Reefs Conference posted by on April 08, 2007 at 21:57:45:
A couple of points to consider in this discussion
1. Environmental impact reports that examined environmental effects of the rigs at the time that some of the platforms were proposed identified that their removal would create significant environmental consequences to marine organisms and habitat and that these effects would need to be mitigated. However, the preferred strategy for doing this is to avoid the effect, that is, leave these in place.
2. Trawlers talk about regaining their traditional trawling grounds. The platforms act a speed bumps or barriers. Yet, after 40 years, how many trawlers are still around that fished the areas before the platforms were put in.
3. Love's research and that of others (which went on for more than a decade) have demonstrated that in many cases platforms act as producers rather than attracting life from "natural reefs'.
4. How long does an artificial reef need to be in existence before it is considered real?
5. The platforms are unique microenvironments with mixes of marine life that probably can't be replicated in shallow coastal environments. What potential biotechnology sources are we surrenduring?
6. Assuming the platforms are removed, what would the reaction of the community be if the oil companies announced they (or anyone else) was removing the equivalent area of natural reef?
7. Given California's history of environmental degradation (95 percent of coastal wetlands dredged and filled) can the state really afford to lose any more habitat, natural or artificial, than it already has?
8. Understand the environmentalists opposition to this idea is driven by ideology. For people who believe that offshore oil is the most evil of all of human activities, the platforms represent the devil incarnate and are a constant reminder of it. It is impossible for good (marine habitat) to come from evil.
9. Diving on them is like being on a big underwater jungle gym and is just a lot of fun.
I could go on, but why belabor the point.
In the interest of full disclosure, I have been a public advocate of conversion since the early 1990s/