Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Who's fishy? 

In posting on the "crisis of choice" made by Democrats and Bill Clinton's veto of ANWR drilling, Gary Gross links to a letter in the local paper praising renewable energy. Why not drill offshore?
Offshore drilling is extremely expensive and jeopardizes important sources of seafood.
This despite there being not one drop of oil spilled from Katrina or Rita off of the Louisiana Coast. And Humberto Fontova points out, the fish and coral life seem to like being around oil rigs. He's written a book on a group of people who go fishing off of abandoned oil rigs, most of which are off the Louisiana coast. The group has a video that shows spearfishing off those waters.

The high prices of gas and oil are exactly the thing that induces offshore drilling. Yes it's expensive, but firms in Florida who got a few leases squeezed out of Congress in 2006 are willing to risk $100 million or more to see if they can find new reserves. When Congress passed the Deep Ocean Energy Resources Act of 2006 , Democrats like Florida Senator Bill Nelson threatened a filibuster. DOER never passed the Senate. It kept drilling (in a rider on another bill) to 125 miles offshore the FL panhandle, an area of 8.3 million acres. That's when gas was $3 and oil $60. Now we're north of $4 and $140, and they're drilling and wanting more leases. Any chance we could get Congress to agree?

Let's say that again: in 2006, the Republican House passed DOER Act; the Democrats in the Senate threatened a filibuster and gutted it. Anyone wanting to blame Republicans for not drilling OCS when they were in charge is ignorant of DOER's history.

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