March 12, 2012 at 12:00 pm #1912
3/08/2012 @ 12:23PM
How To Keep California’s Natural Oil Seeps From Killing Birds? Allow Drilling.
By Christopher Helman Forbes Staff
Map 1969 Oil spill off Santa Barbara
Heartbreaking article from the L.A. Times this morning (Natural oil seepage off Santa Barbara takes a toll on seabirds) on how natural oil seepage into the waters off Santa Barbara, Calif. is killing marine birds. Oil companies arent to blame for this one its only Gods or Mother Natures fault that theres crude oil bubbling up from giant reservoirs below the ocean. The story says that an increase in seepage in 2005 killed more than 1,500 birds.
Whats entirely missing from the story is any hint of how this bird killing could be stopped. The solution is simple: allow drilling off the coast. Stick a few wells into that shallow reservoir and within a few years enough oil would be safely removed and pressure reduce from the reservoirs that it would no longer leak out to kill birds. Scientists at U.C. Santa Barbara have studied this very concept for years, and found that seeps near the handful of producing wells off the coast have been dramatically curtailed.
But I guess science is such a political non starter in California that the reporter doesnt even bother mentioning it. Sure, Santa Barbara does have reason to be wary, considering the 1969 oil spill caused by a blowout on a Unocal well that released 3 million gallons into the ocean.
The shallow waters of Santa Barbara are a world apart from the deepwater of the Gulf of Mexico where BP had its spill. Since 1969 drillers have sunk thousands of wells in shallow waters off Texas, Louisiana and Norway with virtually no spills. Occidental Petroleum has for decades produced oil from a handful of wells in Los Angeles harbor. California should be smart about this and open up the seepage area to drilling, with the condition that whichever company gets the job must put up, say $5 billion in environmental escrow before ever sinking a drill bit. Lets save the birds.
March 12, 2012 at 12:06 pm #4694
Christopher has a good point but not sure works on seep but not only are there seeps but also what is termed Asphalt Volcanoes off both West Coast & Gulf Coast for past 30,000 years (probably source of tar washing onshore that wasnt from BP spill). But he will waste your time trying convince liberals or environmental goofs on this topic.
What amazes me is how the Environmentalist use dead birds as tool against oil/energy industry but never any Green energy. They nor liberal press find time tell us that Wind Farms are killing +100,000 birds a year including those on endangered species list like Golden & Bald Eagles and Whooping crane. Worse Wind Energy has no permit requirement forcing them do better as they are trying force oil companies. And they even got credit for pushing recent permit to allow them kill 5 Eagles/year!
Compare that against Chevron stopping major project to save hatching Owls in Mississippi!
While were talking about Green heart of Black Oil industry vs. Black Heart of Green Energy Industry C should also mention that Oil Industry saved the Whales by replacing whale oil with Refined products in 1890s.
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