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BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means

robomatic 17 Mar 05 - 12:48 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 17 Mar 05 - 01:12 AM
robomatic 17 Mar 05 - 01:48 AM
Ebbie 17 Mar 05 - 12:35 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Mar 05 - 01:01 PM
robomatic 17 Mar 05 - 03:44 PM
Don Firth 17 Mar 05 - 05:44 PM
Ron Davies 17 Mar 05 - 11:03 PM
DougR 18 Mar 05 - 12:20 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Mar 05 - 02:14 AM
katlaughing 18 Mar 05 - 03:28 AM
Ron Davies 18 Mar 05 - 05:01 AM
robomatic 18 Mar 05 - 08:18 AM
Bunnahabhain 18 Mar 05 - 08:23 AM
robomatic 18 Mar 05 - 02:30 PM
GUEST,McGrath of Harlow 18 Mar 05 - 04:29 PM
robomatic 18 Mar 05 - 04:35 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Mar 05 - 07:08 PM
robomatic 18 Mar 05 - 07:45 PM
Troll 19 Mar 05 - 12:43 AM
McGrath of Harlow 19 Mar 05 - 08:09 AM
Don Firth 19 Mar 05 - 05:19 PM
robomatic 19 Mar 05 - 06:53 PM
Don Firth 19 Mar 05 - 08:13 PM
robomatic 19 Mar 05 - 10:03 PM
robomatic 19 Mar 05 - 10:37 PM
GUEST,beardedbruce 19 Mar 05 - 10:50 PM
robomatic 20 Mar 05 - 12:06 PM
GUEST 21 Mar 05 - 04:56 AM
beardedbruce 21 Mar 05 - 05:50 AM
Don Firth 21 Mar 05 - 01:01 PM
robomatic 21 Mar 05 - 01:30 PM
CarolC 21 Mar 05 - 01:42 PM
robomatic 22 Mar 05 - 11:29 AM
Ron Davies 24 Mar 05 - 11:34 PM
robomatic 25 Mar 05 - 12:20 AM
GUEST,McGrath of Harlow 25 Mar 05 - 05:04 AM
robomatic 25 Mar 05 - 07:51 AM
McGrath of Harlow 25 Mar 05 - 09:12 AM
Ron Davies 25 Mar 05 - 10:45 PM
Ebbie 26 Mar 05 - 06:25 PM
robomatic 26 Mar 05 - 08:15 PM
robomatic 26 Mar 05 - 08:56 PM
Ebbie 26 Mar 05 - 09:54 PM
robomatic 27 Mar 05 - 07:14 AM
Ron Davies 27 Mar 05 - 11:05 AM
Ebbie 27 Mar 05 - 12:27 PM
robomatic 27 Mar 05 - 01:36 PM
Ebbie 27 Mar 05 - 02:04 PM
robomatic 27 Mar 05 - 02:34 PM
robomatic 21 Apr 05 - 09:10 AM
GUEST,WYS 21 Apr 05 - 10:17 AM
robomatic 21 Apr 05 - 12:49 PM
wysiwyg 21 Apr 05 - 12:59 PM
robomatic 21 Apr 05 - 04:28 PM
Bill D 21 Apr 05 - 07:52 PM
emjay 21 Apr 05 - 10:08 PM
robomatic 22 Apr 05 - 12:07 AM
Ron Davies 22 Apr 05 - 07:37 AM
GUEST,Larry K 22 Apr 05 - 02:48 PM
GUEST,Larry K 22 Apr 05 - 02:54 PM
robomatic 22 Apr 05 - 05:12 PM
Ron Davies 22 Apr 05 - 10:52 PM
Ron Davies 22 Apr 05 - 11:26 PM
robomatic 23 Apr 05 - 03:07 AM
Ron Davies 23 Apr 05 - 01:56 PM
robomatic 24 Apr 05 - 01:06 PM
dianavan 24 Apr 05 - 01:07 PM
Ebbie 24 Apr 05 - 02:04 PM
robomatic 24 Apr 05 - 02:04 PM
robomatic 24 Apr 05 - 02:07 PM
Ron Davies 24 Apr 05 - 11:00 PM
Ron Davies 25 Apr 05 - 12:07 AM
robomatic 25 Apr 05 - 07:41 AM
GUEST,Larry K 25 Apr 05 - 09:22 AM
GUEST,Larry K 25 Apr 05 - 09:30 AM
robomatic 25 Apr 05 - 10:48 AM
Ron Davies 25 Apr 05 - 09:22 PM
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Ebbie 25 Apr 05 - 11:29 PM
podman 26 Apr 05 - 07:56 AM
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Ron Davies 27 Apr 05 - 06:06 AM
GUEST,Larry K 27 Apr 05 - 10:00 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 27 Apr 05 - 11:02 AM
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Subject: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 12:48 AM

ANWR - The Alaska National Wildlife Refuge - generally considered to contain significant commercial sources of oil. Pronounced 'anwar'.

What the recent vote means - With the greater Republican count in the Senate, plus a couple Democrat cross-overs, makes it more likely that Congress will approve exploratory drilling in the reserve. The vote that just occurred was to include ANWR development in the budget. There needs to be another vote before drilling is actually approved. It is still not a sure thing to happen. And even if Congress approves, the big oil companies have to actually foot the bill to do exploratory drilling.

What is exploratory drilling? - A mobile drill rig has to be moved into place from which a series of exploratory drilling operations can take place. For an area the size of ANWR to be explored, several rigs would be used. Modern directional drilling allows each rig, from a single position, to make penetrations thousands of feet deep up to several miles horizontally. Mobile rigs move into position in the winter, do their drilling, and are moved off well before the ice melts. They leave no record of their passage except for the actual drill hole, which is a small pad something like 30' x 30'. If they don't find oil, not much else happens. A drill rig being used this way eats money at a phenomenol rate, on the order of 100,000 to 300,000 bucks a day.

What if they do find oil? In order to get oil out of the area, a large gravel pad is built. These are roughly the size of 1/2 to 2 x American football field 50 x 100 yards. Gravel is poured out to a depth of about 10' which insulates construction from the tundra. The tundra is 'protected' and inaccessible below the gravel. The idea is to insulate the tundra so it will not melt, hence provide a foundation for the oil well structures. A drill rig needs to be brought to the site to drill a number of wells (10 to 50 at 30' intervals)in order to maximize oil production. Some wells are 'injectors' meaning they actually pump fluids INTO the ground in order to 'herd' the subterranean oil to the optimum pick up points. Typically, a road must be built to access the well sites. There have been developments, most notably the Alpine field, where they do not have a road, they extend the gravel pad to make the site accessible to aircraft, they only move the rigs in the winter over ice roads. They also need to build pipelines, which are welded steel with insulation around them. The pipelines have nowhere near the environmental impact that the roads do because they are elevated above the tundra.

How quickly can oil be brought to market?
I've been seeing figures as high as ten years. Those figures must be including a long search time. Exploration is done in the winter, and duh, you get one winter per year. Exploration may take one two or three years depending on commitment, money, and luck. Once the exploration and seismic work has shown the petroleum engineers how much, where, and what kind of oil, development can be done pretty damn fast. Two years, no big deal. Remember the major pipeline is already there and operating well below capacity.

What are the environmental effects?
1) Loss of pristine environment. On the upside, this is not 'pretty' environment. This is the north coast of ANWR, it is flat, treeless, windblown, and hostile to most terrestrial life. On the downside, it has its own fierce beauty and once a drill pad is put there, that is lost forever.

2) Possible redistribution of animal herds. There are migratory birds which utilize the area and seem to be little affected by the developed areas to the East of ANWR. There are polar bears, grizzly bears, caribou, and foxes. All seem to compensate pretty well to existing development. There is concern on the part of Alaska natives to the South that the migratory routes of the caribou may be displaced requiring hunters to travel further to reach prey. There are other natives to the north who will directly benefit from development to their tax base. They are for the most part in favor of development.

3) Oil Spills. Oil Spills do happen, but there is a very rigorous definition of what constitutes an oil spill. I believe it is a single drop. When I was there, you couldn't refill a vehicle without putting an oil absorbent diaper pad below where the fuel nozzle pokes into the gas tank. For big breaks, there are safeguards to the system in the form of valves that can shut the pipeline down very quickly. There is no water table to be polluted. Crude oil is not very vaporous (compared to products like gasoline) and congeals at low temperatures. So an oil spill leads to an expensive cleanup, but not long term environmental damage. There are few of the large kind of oil spills and they are always a big deal and get reported in the papers.

4) Air pollution. I've seen a haze in the Arctic, but I'm not sure if it is from existing development or blown in from Asia. Developing ANWR will add some but not much compared to what's already there. Most of the energy used to produce electricity and heat comes from burning natural gas, which is a pretty clean burning fuel.

5) Environmentalists have a significant fear that allowing drilling in ANWR will make it more likely that the current government will allow more economic use of other reservation areas in the Lower 48, more visible and more prone to major cosmetic and structural impact not only in oil, but in forestry and mining. In other words, ANWR development is the 'thin end of the wedge' of irreversible development. This is probably a worthwhile concern

What are the economic effects?. There is nowhere near enough oil in ANWR to make the US close to energy independent. Those days are over. There (probably) IS enough oil there to save tens of billions of dollars that will otherwise go overseas.

Personally The big pipeline and the north south service road already exist. New development will be a small fraction of what is already there, and newer technology can reduce impact substatially. I don't have a problem with exploration in ANWR which will have minimum impact. If there is to be development, I think the government should link it to an increased efficiency / conservation drive throughout the country. Having additional locally produced oil AND more control over our consumption could lead to lower oil prices. Unfortunately, I think the Dems don't have enough power to force the link, and our President has shown little concern over conservation (along with the rest of the country).
It may be moot because the oil companies go where they can get the most bang for the investment dollar and for the last few years its been the Gulf of Mexico, and if the political situation stabilizes more, Indonesia. Alaska is a very expensive place to go to for oil, but the facilities in the North are top notch and heavily monitored.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 01:12 AM

I agree with your conclusion Robomatic. I am tired of hearing 'chicken little' tell me the sky is falling. 'CL' told me that when the first pipeline was built we would ruin animal habitat, and thearea in particular. Well, it has been nigh on 30 years and the critters are getting on just fine, thriving in fact, and the sky didn't fall. Conservation, Si; environmentalism, No!


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 01:48 AM

Thanks, John. I consider myself an environmentalist sans agenda. I just wanted to lay out the realistic causes and effects as I see them, and the likely tradeoffs of development. Today on the radio I heard Rush Limbaugh expound on how there were many more caribou since the pipeline because the pipeline kept them warm. Well, there ARE more caribou, but they are not getting warm off the pipeline. Rush is a BS artist of the first caliber. There are just way more opinions than facts in the mix, and it turns out very few people have actually been up there and seen what it's all about. It's way cool pun intended.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 12:35 PM

Robomatic, I realize the size of the caribou herd has increased in the pipeline regions. I've never heard: Are the predators in the area still preying on the caribou; i.e. is it possible that one reason the caribou have thrived is because the predators are staying away?


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 01:01 PM

Those who want to drill and who would try to dismiss the site's protected status as a wildlife refuge are quick to complain about how unattractive the place is, and how many flies and mosquitoes. As if human values of "beauty" or "comfort" were supposed to be factored into why a wilderness area is set aside for wildlife in the first place.

We'd be a lot better off if the megadollars spent on lobbying to get this site opened up, and the dollars spent in exploratory drilling, were spent on developing alternate energy sources and electric cars. Build up rapid transit systems (several of which were originally purchased to be trashed by the auto and/or oil industries, by the way--see LA) and teach people to conserve the energy they have. The IDEA that "we can always go drill more oil" only delays the serious effort to reform the Western profligate use of oil as a energy supply.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 03:44 PM

Ebbie: That's a good question. I neglected to mention wolves. Sorry. I wish I had first hand knowledge, but I don't. I know that wolves are not endangered, not even close. Many years ago I knew a guy who worked for the US government in monitoring pipeline impact on wildlife. At the time, over ten years ago, he said that wolves were using parts of the structures as blinds, in other words, it was helping the wolves. That was some time ago and I don't know what the current theory is.

SRS: I don't disagree with you. I covered it to a small extent under my 'political' entry. My current take on what it's going to take to get this country on an efficiency / conservation kick is that it will happen when the price of energy goes up, stays up, and the prognosticators offer no relief. It's $ that make the world go round, after all.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Don Firth
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 05:44 PM

Thanks for the link, Maggie. I'm glad to see someone pick up on this little-known bit of our country's history—the systematic dismantling of light-rail public transportation, which, in many cities in the Thirties was already in place and functioning cleanly, conveniently, and efficiently.

Although my folks were from Seattle, I spent the first nine years of my life in Pasadena, CA., and we "returned" to Seattle in 1940. During the Thirties, I recall the "streetcar" (trolley) system that ran in Pasadena, Los Angeles, and the surrounding municipalities. My Dad worked in Los Angeles. He took the "interurban" (electric light-rail, two or three cars per train, easily expandable) to and from work. The system connected with each municipality's streetcar system. My aunt, who lived in Los Angeles, visited us every weekend. She took the interurban to and from. Most people commuted on the streetcars and on the interurban light rail system. Believe it or not, not everyone had—or needed—an automobile. And often, their main use was recreational. The "Sunday drive," or going off someplace (e.g., Griffith Park or Lake Arrowhead) for a picnic was generally what we used our car for.

Here's the grabber. In the greater Los Angeles area, you could get around very easily without an automobile. And in the Thirties, there was no smog!!

Oil companies and automobile companies began quietly buying up the light-rail system over a period of years. Their intention was to dismantle them and replace them with a freeway system. Mission accomplished. The benefits? You can't get much of anyplace anymore unless you own an automobile, sometimes due to traffic jams you can't get anyplace anyway, and the gasoline-powered automobile is one of the largest sources of air pollution on the planet.

And in case you missed it in Stilly River Sage's post, here it is again:—   

And i$n't grand how the money change$ hand$?.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 17 Mar 05 - 11:03 PM

Defenders of ANWR Drilling--

As a Republican who sure as hell never voted for the alleged current commander in chief (or his daddy), a few questions:


1)    You admit it will not make the US "close to energy independent". You also admit it has its own "fierce beauty". So why ruin what you also admit to be a "pristine environment"?

2)    "The thin edge of the the wedge" applies not only in the lower 48 but in AK also, or didn't you realize that?

3)    You assure us that 1 drop constitutes an oil spill. Really"? How comforting. With pressure for employment on this project and with the Bush administration's well-known concern for the environment, do you really think this standard will be enforced?

4)    According to the Wall St Journal today (17 Mar 2005), it's very possible that the smaller firms, not the majors, (who are not eager for possible bad publicity) are the ones who would be doing the drilling in ANWR. Without a vertically integrated organization, including divisions which sell oil and gas to many consumers in the lower 48, how concerned do you think they will be with spills (especially with the fox diligently guarding the henhouse)? (Gale Norton is world-renowned for for her strong defense of the environment).

5)   The estimates of oil under the refuge run from 6 to 16 billion barrels, according to the Journal today. Exactly why do you think 16 billion barrels (to be generous) is worth destroying the refuge? It'll only be 1 road--again, how comforting. In fact what law will enforce this?

6)   "Having additionally locally produced oil and more control over our consumption" will lead to lower oil prices. Wonderful. Your naivete is touching. What pill do you intend to feed US consumers so they do not take lower oil prices as an invitation to the next SUV or other gas-guzzler craze?

7)   What, besides wishful thinking, do you have in mind as a plan to actually conserve oil on a large scale, rather than succumb to the above syndrome? Don't tell me "higher prices", since the whole point of ANWR drilling is lower prices.


The basic question is: why is what you admit to be a temporary lowering of oil prices just hunky-dory with you as a reason to destroy ANWR as a "pristine environment"?




For those of us who don't subscribe to the idea that anything goes if the sacred goal of temporarily lower oil prices can be attained, there is definitely hope. For other goals, Bush needs the support of Republican Senators he is alienating through this gambit.   His budget resolution assumes larger revenues from ANWR leases than $2.4 billion (in 2007 alone) to justify inclusion in the budget. When this becomes common knowledge there may be some re-thinking.

Above all, if the whole budget collapses in Congress (and it's being assailed now from both the liberal and conservative sides (conservatives want some guarantees budget cuts will actually be made)---the ANWR provision goes down (again).


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: DougR
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 12:20 AM

Ron: I cannot imagine why your preface your posts with the statement that you are a Republican but did not vote for Bush or his Daddy. Who cares?

We need to be independent of Mid-East oil. Anwar is part of becoming independet until other alternatives to fossil fuels can be developed. It's just a piece, but it's a piece.

The Carabou will continue to live, reproduce, and live happily ever after.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 02:14 AM

DougR, his preface means that there are some Republicans who are reasonable, thinking people! For moderate republicans, the party has been hijacked.

I look forward to the day when old landfills become the next big thing in the U.S. energy policy. That's where there is a reliable source of petroleum, already processed and awaiting recyling.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 03:28 AM

I said it the first time the bastard was voted in and started in on ANWR. While some of it is a bit dated, it bears repeating, IMO: click HERE.

Ron Davies, I hope you are right about that last bit. I'd like to think this idiocy has a snowball's chance in hell.

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 05:01 AM

It's real simple, Doug. There is such a thing as quality of life. Perhaps this is a foreign concept to you (probably French, right?)--you're only familiar with the concept of quality of your bank account. If so this would explain your stance.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 08:18 AM

Ron:

1)    You admit it will not make the US "close to energy independent". You also admit it has its own "fierce beauty". So why ruin what you also admit to be a "pristine environment"?

Depends on your definition of the word ruin. I am mainly stating that the development is in a comparatively small part of the refuge and does not endanger wildlife. A hundred years from now it won't look ruined, but it won't look pristine, either. It will still have a fierce beauty.

2)    "The thin edge of the the wedge" applies not only in the lower 48 but in AK also, or didn't you realize that?

That is true, I was figuring that was obvious and I wanted to make it clear it's a national concern not just Alaska that is feared 'up for grabs'. There are already incursions into Alaska national forests for logging which provide some jobs but negligible income - that's for another thread.

3)    You assure us that 1 drop constitutes an oil spill. Really"? How comforting. With pressure for employment on this project and with the Bush administration's well-known concern for the environment, do you really think this standard will be enforced?

Absolutely. This is an incremental addition to what's already there. With the strong environmental lobby in this country, I don't see any reason for standards to degrade. You may get tired of parking trucks over oil diapers which catch any fluid leaking from oil pans, but you do it, it's part of the job, you're paid by the hour and those are the rules, so you do it.

4)    According to the Wall St Journal today (17 Mar 2005), it's very possible that the smaller firms, not the majors, (who are not eager for possible bad publicity) are the ones who would be doing the drilling in ANWR. Without a vertically integrated organization, including divisions which sell oil and gas to many consumers in the lower 48, how concerned do you think they will be with spills (especially with the fox diligently guarding the henhouse)? (Gale Norton is world-renowned for for her strong defense of the environment).

That's a good point, but you are overlooking that the immediate provisions are for exploratory drilling, which is almost always done by smaller companies hired by the majors. It is a field unto itself, and the chances of crude spills are negligible because nothing is being pumped. What comes out of the ground from these efforts are samples for analysis.

5)   The estimates of oil under the refuge run from 6 to 16 billion barrels, according to the Journal today. Exactly why do you think 16 billion barrels (to be generous) is worth destroying the refuge? It'll only be 1 road--again, how comforting. In fact what law will enforce this?

There is a difference between destroying the refuge which is a wild overstatement of what is possible, and what we agreed upon above 'no longer pristine'. And again, it is the northern part of the refuge, which is a fraction of the actual refuge, most of which will not be touched. The estimates of the oil are very abstract because there has been no exploratory drilling. This is what the issue on the table is. I don't know if there will be no road, one road, or a network of roads.

6)   "Having additionally locally produced oil and more control over our consumption" will lead to lower oil prices. Wonderful. Your naivete is touching. What pill do you intend to feed US consumers so they do not take lower oil prices as an invitation to the next SUV or other gas-guzzler craze?

I'm glad you're touched (don't let it go to your head). The core argument in favor is that it will save tens of billions of dollars from going overseas. We don't know what the price of oil is going to be in 2020. It may already be $200/ barrel. Having ANWR derived oil on tap will be better than not having it, under any foreseeable conditions. Remember this is not going to solve our energy problem, it goes toward giving us more breathing room.

7)   What, besides wishful thinking, do you have in mind as a plan to actually conserve oil on a large scale, rather than succumb to the above syndrome? Don't tell me "higher prices", since the whole point of ANWR drilling is lower prices.

Developing ANWR oil again is not going to solve the problem. It is going to save money.


I would make the argument that by over-stressing ANWR, the environmental lobby is losing on three fronts:
1) There are other environmental issues that are not getting addressed enough. There are some major fixes that have to be made in our mining rules allowing mining companies to 'have at' national property for a pittance. It is past time to make them pay some real money which can then be used for enforcement.

2) There is a chance to cooperatively come up with a balanced solution, say an Alpine like development with an airfield but no access road to ANWR. As the price of energy goes up, the environmental lobby runs a real risk of losing everything and being left with no say whatsoever in how it gets developed.

3) While the energy problem seems obvious to you, there is less information and less consensus out there then you think. A lot of people think that the cost of energy will inevitably lead us to conservation. Don't forget that a lot of people think we're just going to start burning more coal and developing Canada's huge tar sand deposits. So count your blessings that we still have clean, environmentally friendly oil (which it is by comparison to those potential sources). The environmental lobby should be making a major effort at education and supporting ecological research, and disseminating it around the world, particularly those rapidly expanding economies such as in China and India.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Bunnahabhain
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 08:23 AM

Whatever the larger issues here, drilling in the ANWR now will cause far less damage than it would have done in the past. But why not wait until the oil will actually be used for something useful, ie the single most useful industrial feedstock going, rather than just energy? Is it so hard to say not yet?

Bunnhabhain.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 02:30 PM

Bunnhabhain - how does one pronounce that?

The main reason for not waiting is that the greatest economic feature to drawing oil from ANWR is that the big pipeline is there. The big pipeline, however, is pushing 30 years old, and the oil it is channeling south is diminishing. It makes more sense to get the oil out while the pipeline is still being well maintained and up to the job.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 04:29 PM

Six months worth of US oil consumption, that's what it adds up to.

The descendants of today's Americans are really going to despise you for this.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 04:35 PM

McG: No and How Do You Know


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 07:08 PM

Obviously statements about the future can't be about knowing, robomatic. They are about predicting, on the basis of information about the present and past. I don't know the sun will rise tomorrow - after all, it might go supernova in the night. But it's a reasonable prediction to make.

As for the six months figure, that's the estimate of the Alaska project director of the Natural Resources Defence Council. Maybe it's an underestimate - on the basis of 20,000,000 barrels used up by the USA every day, and the US Geological Survey estimate of about 10 billion available barrels, there might be enough for 18 months supply. Wow! ( "Senate backs exploitation of Alaskan wildlife refuge" )

In terms of meeting the US appetite for oil, this is pretty marginal. But of course, in terms of making money for friends and colleagues of people in high places, it's not at all marginal, and pretty evidently that is what it is actually all about.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 18 Mar 05 - 07:45 PM

Well, don't let me stop you from predicting McG.

As for the oft quoted argument that this is 'only' 6 months, 12 months, 18 months worth of oil:

1) As stated at the outset of the thread, we won't really know until exploratory drilling is done, which is what that congressional vote is really leading toward, with another vote required (and by no means a done deal).

2) All I'm saying is that utilizing ANWR oil looks to save the US a lot of money that otherwise must go overseas. If indeed there are 10 billion barrels of oil, at $50/ barrel, that looks to be half a trillion bucks. If oil gets scarce, look to the cost going up and the usefulness and value of having that much of our own oil in hand to be substantially higher.

3) The way oil is actually pumped, shipped, and utilized, it's not like the US economy sticks a big straw in ANWR and sucks it dry. It is incrementally added to streams of existing oil that is pooled and shipped, in which case it will be pumped over the next twenty or more years. If the past is any quide, over those years there will be methods of recovering even more of what's there, as already happened with the Prudhoe reserves.

4) Simply put, it is a valuable asset calling for comparatively little outlay, considering the bulk of the necessary infrastructure is already there .

5) Possibly our descendents will think we were crazy not to take advantage of the situation. But predicting is your department.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Troll
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 12:43 AM

If we don't explore before it becomes necessary, by the time it becomes necessary it will be too late.

The environmantalists would do well to get on board now, while they still have some clout and wrest as many consessions as they can from the Energy Dept. If they continue to fight the exploration of ANWAR they may delay it until things are desparate and then the job will be done quick and dirty instead of slow and careful.

Because believe me, unless there is a miracle breakthrough in a whole new field of energy, it's gonna happen.

troll


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 08:09 AM

There's no need for "a miracle breakthrough in a whole new field of energy" - we already know where the energy we want can come from. Solar power, directly, and via biomass and wind and wave; moonpower via tides; earthpower via geothermal sources. And on top of that, technologies that enable us to get by without squandering energy - insulation, efficient machinery. If there is some "miracle breakthrough" that doesn't have the kind of downside that nuclear fission has, fair enough - but there's no need to wait on that happening.

What gets in the way of switching from fossil fuels is a distorted "market" system distorted by a distorted political system.

But use of fossil fuel on the kind of scale we use them is going to destroy us, if we don't stop. So at some point we will stop. That may not happen until the serious damage really affects the USA directly, which will be some time after it hurts a lot of other places, but it will happen.

I disagree with Doug about the merits of opening up this new oil field - but he is spot on in putting it in the context of "until other alternatives to fossil fuels can be developed".


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Don Firth
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 05:19 PM

Heard a program a couple of days ago (on that vile, ultra-liberal station, KUOW-FM here in Seattle, affiliated with the ultimate demon of the liberal media, NPR). In the context of the ANWR vote (spokespersons from both sides, I might point out. The host was quite neutral, which, of course, makes him a flaming liberal), an hour-long segment was devoted to interviewing the Danish minister of energy (don't recall his exact title).

Denmark suffered rather badly during the energy crisis of the Seventies, so they decide to make themselves energy-independent. They have done so. In fact, they do a nice business in exporting energy to other countries.

They have reduced their petroleum consumption to minuscule amounts, and what little oil they need, they don't get from the Middle East or OPEC countries. They get it from the North Sea. They don't use much, and they are working to reduce even that.

Various low-cost, efficient sources of energy that they make use of are the following:
In cities, they pipe cooling water (hot—normally considered "a waste product") from power plants to surrounding areas (like steam heat). Integrated thermal energy in buildings; a central heating system for an entire area (downtown buildings, apartment complexes, etc. Local example, most of the buildings on the University of Washington's large campus are heated from a central heating system; hot water pipes run underground through tunnels all over campus.).

Wind turbines (32% of Denmark's electricity – expected soon, 50%, eventually even higher). Birds, the energy minister said, are not endangered. Anything predictable for a bird (make the windmills visible) they can and do avoid. Clear windows are far more dangerous to them.

Burning biomass as fuel (straw, wood chips), replacing coal (in the above mentioned power plants). Also can be used in households instead of coal.

New cars are heavily taxed if they are not fuel-efficient. Average 60 mpg. instead of 20 mpg. in USA. Hybrid cars are very popular. There are also electric cars available that can attain speeds of 80 mph. and go 500 miles on a single overnight charge before switching over to a gasoline engine. [On an National Geographic Special several months ago, Alan Alda interviewed manufacturers of several alternate energy automobiles (almost all European, unavailable in the USA {now, why might that be?}), and drove some of them, including a sizable van. Ought to satisfy the wilder urges of any brainless lead-foot].

Lots of bicycles (including electric bikes). Much use of trains, rapid transit. Run ever few minutes. Popular. Inexpensive. Efficient.
They didn't mention this during the program, but there are many other sources of energy available. Alcohol can replace gasoline, vegetable oils can replace diesel. Some people are already doing this—modifying their autos on their own. No help from auto manufacturers.

Tidal power. There are several ways of doing this, including anchoring large, slow-moving turbines deep under water in areas of tidal ebb and flow, or in places like the Gulf Stream. As far as whales, dolphins, etc., being injured by the blades of the turbines, it would be easy to surround them with screens that would divert sea life from the turbines.

There are also ways of harnessing solar power that don't involve expensive solar cells (although they, too, are getting cheaper—there are people here in cloudy old Seattle who supply much or all of their household electricity with solar panels on their roofs, selling their surplus to Seattle City Light). In the American southwest, say, a substantial area of otherwise wasted land (stretch of desert, say). Bury two large zig-zag patterns of pipes just below the surface of a large expanse of desert (Several acres? Several square miles?). The pipes contain fluid. Connect the two pipe fields with a turbine, or several turbines. Place a large sheet of insulating material on a rigid platform (mounted on rails) over one half of the piped area. During the day, cover one area, shielding it from the sun's light. By nightfall, it will be cooler than the surrounding area. Then at sundown (desert nights can get pretty cold), roll the insulating sheet to the adjacent area, preventing heat from radiating away. Over a period of a few nights, you have one patch very hot (absorbs heat during the day) and an adjacent patch frosty cold (radiates what heat it has during the night). Hot fluid flows through the turbines producing electric power, cools in the cold patch, then flows back to the hot patch to be reheated and continue the cycle. Once it's set up and after the initial heating/cooling, practically no maintenance is required.

A well-know science fiction writer once said to me that considering all of the things we make from petroleum (pharmaceuticals, fertilizers, all kinds of plastics, God knows what all!), and considering the alternative sources, to burn petroleum (once it's gone, it's gone!) for energy is a crime against the future.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 06:53 PM

Don:

Sounds interesting. I'm curious of a couple of things. There are movements for windmill farms in several areas I'm familiar with. There are environmentalists who insist it is dangerous for various species of birds, in particular, raptors.

I went online and the figures I saw for Denmark showed currently 15% actual, 20% normalized (not 32%) of Denmark's energy from windpower. It was a wind-energy site so even if they were not on track they were on the high side. That figure alone is effin' awesome. The 50% figure is an aggressive target for the year 2025.

Danish Windpower

I really really doubt that there is a useful electric car that can go 500 miles on charge alone. It would need a massive capacitor bank to recover all its braking action or a massive battery, or both. The most efficient locomotion going is railroads, bicycles, and hybrids.

The use of cooling water from generation plants (it's actually very hot water utilized to heat nearby buildings) is increasingly common in the US and industrialized world. It's called cogeneration. It uses what would normally be a waste product, heat created by generation facilities. To make it work calls for generation plants to be located near a major energy user which also has heating needs. It's been used in several Alaska locations to good effect.

And as I said in an earlier post, what is required to motivate this kind of progress? $$. Denmark generates the bulk of their power from imported coal. So it is the almighty kroner which is driving their very impressive efficiency.

I can't remember that SF author with the comment about wasting crude by burning it. I heard it long ago and believed it until I actually got to work in a refinery. Crude is a natural product. When it is refined it is broken out into various products of varying volatilities, some of which are sold to be burned, others which are turned into chemicals and solids. So when you are burning gasoline you are burning what was a waste product until the internal combustion engine came along. A lot of plastics are made from natural gas, however, and I have no idea if that is removed from the burnable part, or if indeed you are burning potential chemical goodies when you heat your home with NG. On the other hand, it is way more efficient than heating your home from electricity that was itself generated by combustion.

But these are quibbles. The major point I'd make in cooperation with your excellent post, Don: There are more potential ways to get alternative energy and create efficienty than will really work. The government should be involved in promoting change, not telling us in advance what will work, because no one really knows. A tax on consumption would be helpful. A big handout to GM to promote their version of a fuel cell vehicle will be wasted. But given the kind of government we are experiencing, I'm afraid that that's what's going to happen.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Don Firth
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 08:13 PM

Good link (Danish Windpower), robomatic. I don't have time to look it over thoroughly now, but I will later. On the 32%, I was quoting the figure given by "Svend Auken, Deputy Speaker of Danish Parliament, leader of the opposition, and former Danish Minister for Energy and the Environment"on the program I listened to. Here, incidentally, is a link to the program: CLICKY.

"Cogeneration." That was the word Svend Auken used.

On the electric car ("up to" 500 miles/charge), that was one of the cars that Alan Alda drove, in Germany, I think. It was a fairly small car, about the size of a Toyota Corolla or Prius. The power pack was on a tray under the floorboards. The plan was that you could either charge the batteries yourself (plug it in) or, if you were on a long trip, stop at a service station and swap your exhausted tray for a fresh one. Existing service stations could supply such, once enough cars are out and around. I'm no electrical or automotive engineer, so all I have to go on is what they said on the program.

Incidentally (same program with Alan Alda), Iceland runs a lot of cars on hydrogen. With lots of geothermal power available, they generate the hydrogen right at the service stations.

The science fiction writer who made the comment about burning oil was Jerry Pournelle (who is quite conservative politically, by the way, but apparently disenchanted with the current administration, now refers to himself as a "paleo-conservative."). He said it directly to me, but he may have put it in one of his non-fiction articles later on. I knew him in the Sixties. We used to sit in Seattle's infamous Blue Moon Tavern, wet our noses, and argue politics and such. At the time, I didn't know he was even interested in writing, and I didn't find out until a few years after he and his wife left for California. I saw his stories starting to appear in Analog and his books on drugstore paperback racks. Jerry was an exasperating but highly enlightening debating partner; he could bury you in facts and figures, and he was generally right. What we often wound up quibbling about was the interpretation of those facts and figures. He tended to think in grand concepts. It's no wonder he turned his hand to science fiction. Last saw him in 1985 when he and Larry Niven were here on a book-signing tour (Footfall). Incidentally, after the book signing, no less an SF writer than Frank Herbert dropped into the bookstore, and he took Jerry, Larry, and my wife Barbara and me out to dinner at Ivar's Salmon House. That was one helluva memorable evening. Frank Herbert died shortly thereafter.

But I digress. . . .

The power plant in the desert idea was explained to me over coffee in a pizza joint by a guitar student of mine named Doug Johnson. He was a mathematician. He was thinking mostly of supplying power to a permanent moon base, but said the same thing would work here on earth, especially in the southwest. Direct sunlight during the days, cold nights.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 10:03 PM

Don: Interesting! In the 80's I was hanging around in Seattle with a Sci-Fi crowd on Capitol Hill. I don't think I met Jerry but I think that quote was running around at that time.
I saw the show with Alan Alda, and in one scene he is driving the GM 'skateboard' design. If that is the case, it is a prototype design hydrogen fuel cell car and no way is it ready for prime time. GM got a cover page spread in Scientific American about two years ago and it was pages and pages of hand waving. I almost canceled my subscription. It's just the kind of thing I don't want the US gummint to put money into. GM also developed an electric car which they got working and they allowed people to lease them, but then suddenly they pulled what small number were out there out of service and they haven't been heard from again. So I'm not trustful of them. There's a widely advertised fuel cell company out there that holds itself up as the automotive FC of the future, but an expert I met says they're mainly drumming up investment money and have little to show for it. So I approach a lot of this stuff with an eye on the figures and a nose for what's practicable and a kilo of salt.

Now that I've said that, let's go into outer space and develop a solar collector in orbit that beams the energy down to earth. I really like that idea. High tech, presence in space, no useless waste heat, no CO2 emissions.

Countering that with rude reality, my crystal ball sees a lot more nuclear power stations in the future. No CO2 emissions, but plenty of waste heat.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 10:37 PM

Reasonably factual article here:

NYTimes Sunday

I'm assuming that you can get into New York Times easily. A lot of articles require that you log in, and although registration is free, it's just another damn hoop to jump through.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,beardedbruce
Date: 19 Mar 05 - 10:50 PM

robomatic,

"Now that I've said that, let's go into outer space and develop a solar collector in orbit that beams the energy down to earth. I really like that idea. High tech, presence in space, no useless waste heat, no CO2 emissions."

While I support this 100%, under present UN and treaty oblogations it is illegal. Any such device would make a dandy weapons systems, and is prohibited from Earth Orbit.

We had to go to the moon just to test SDI sensors that were not even weapons systems. LEO is a highly regulated environment.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 20 Mar 05 - 12:06 PM

Damn, another blow to my secret death ray project!


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Mar 05 - 04:56 AM

There seem to be two approaches to the energy problem: Using appropriate technology or conforming to the ecological rquirements of the planet or using ever more high tech to counter existing high tech, while we are actually digging an energy hole ever deeper.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: beardedbruce
Date: 21 Mar 05 - 05:50 AM

The problem with the first is that the appropriate level is one at a much lower population.

I do agree that the use of higher technology carries with it the (implicit) demand for MORE resources from some source. Are we willing to destroy the environment of, say, the asteroids, in order to keep Earth relatively clean?

At one point, they shipped dirty laundry from San Francisco to Hawaii to be washed. It made economic sense, but not energy sense. In the future, we may put industry into space. That makes energy sense, but will it make economic? A question worth debating.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Don Firth
Date: 21 Mar 05 - 01:01 PM

The asteroids have an environment??

Mars, yes, Venus, yes, Mercury, not so much. Outer planets (gas giants) and many of their satellites, but asteroids?

Big rocks, some composed of nickel-iron and other stuff. No atmosphere. Maybe vast populations of little green people like this kind of climate?

How do you define "environment?"

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 21 Mar 05 - 01:30 PM

(trying in vain to mask mental picture of New York style overflowing garbage scow strapped on to 'pristine' asteroid, graduating to the lovely rings of Saturn as portrayed in Star Trek opening scene transformed to crushed Fords (is there any other kind?), copies of Rush Limbaugh's books, used diapers, the Da Vinci Code, political bumper stickers, and old KFC buckets.)

"Yeah, it was a good little system until the folks on Planet 3 moved onto the street."


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: CarolC
Date: 21 Mar 05 - 01:42 PM

opening scene transformed to crushed Fords (is there any other kind?), copies of Rush Limbaugh's books, used diapers, the Da Vinci Code, political bumper stickers, and old KFC buckets.)

That's a great list, robomatic. If I didn't know better (and I probably don't), I'd almost call you a poet.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 22 Mar 05 - 11:29 AM

Carol: Thank you and I seem to have spent part of last night creating a thread that proved I am no pote.

Meanwhile I have to contradict what an earlier poster said:


I can't remember that SF author with the comment about wasting crude by burning it. I heard it long ago and believed it until I actually got to work in a refinery. Crude is a natural product. When it is refined it is broken out into various products of varying volatilities, some of which are sold to be burned, others which are turned into chemicals and solids. So when you are burning gasoline you are burning what was a waste product until the internal combustion engine came along. A lot of plastics are made from natural gas, however, and I have no idea if that is removed from the burnable part, or if indeed you are burning potential chemical goodies when you heat your home with NG. On the other hand, it is way more efficient than heating your home from electricity that was itself generated by combustion.

That poster was myself.

Well it turns out that plastics come from a host of sources, portions of refined crude included. Among them are refined gases, the lightest products of a refinery, and naphtha, which is a light gas but heavier than gasoline. Naptha produces intermediate feed products for plastics, and also is a fuel and also gets 'cracked' to produce lighter fuels such as gasoline.

So it is correct to observe that we have all sorts of choices when we produce crude, the same stuff is useful for fuel and for many other products, including chemicals, fertilizers, plastics.

The world of plastics encompasses way more than petrochem. There are plastics from cellulose, natural rubbers, soybeans, even casein from milk. And of course, much plastic can be recycled. Yesterday I heard a radio program where in another country there was talk of banning disposable plastic bags and requiring only heavy duty reusable bags be used, because the lighter ones were blowing around and getting chewed on by animals and blocking drains etc.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 11:34 PM

Haven't been able to post this for a while.

Robomatic and other defenders of drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge----


As you know, Mudcat is a music site. It's what brings us all together. Why is music so special? For me, and I know I'm not alone in this, it's partly because music lifts us out of ourselves. Making music ourselves, especially with others--which is what folk music is all about---even drinking songs, parodies and sea songs--is an activity which lifts us above the mundane. This phenomenon, for lack of a better word, could be called spiritual. There need be no element of religion whatsoever--it's still spiritual.

People who appreciate music are aware that there are higher things in life than accumulating wealth. Money is a means to an end, not a goal in itself. I think there are very few Mudcatters who would disagree with this (perhaps a few).

Another aspect of life which brings us out of ourselves is beauty, especially natural beauty, including stark fierce beauty, as in the Maine coast, the Irish Atlantic coast, much of the Scottish coast, especially the northern islands, part of the English coast,--and, as you yourself pointed out, the state of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as it now stands.

It's hard to believe that you, as a musician, would be willing to sacrifice that beauty, the beauty of an unspoiled pristine place--your word, not mine (don't try to back away from it)--see your first post, under Environmental Effects. And it would be sacrificed needlessly, and for a temporary expedient you yourself admit would not solve the problem of foreign oil dependence.

Another aspect of the issue is stewardship. Again you need not be religious in the least to accept the concept that as humans only here for a finite time, we have an obligation to be good stewards to preserve natural wonders, for visitors from all over the world, for future generations, and because natural wonders are an intrinsic good in themselves.

To make this a quasi-musical thread, a song that speaks directly to this theme of stewardship is "In the Cool of the Day", by Jean Ritchie, a wonderful and haunting song especially when sung by her. You can be not at all religious and still identify with the metaphor: ------- "You may live in this garden if you'll keep the grasses green".

Drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is the opposite.


Then there's the concept called quality of life, with which I'm sure you're familiar. This goes far beyond having food we like to eat and a comfortable bed, and includes, I believe, an appreciation for all sorts of beauty. As musicians, amateur or professional, we appreciate beauty in music. But we also appreciate other types, both man-made and natural beauty.

I believe it makes no difference if we ever see actually see the object. For instance, if by some terrible chance, the Taj Mahal were to be blown up, I would be sorry to hear the news, even if no one were killed. And I don't even have a strong desire to see the Taj Mahal. But knowing it is there is part of my quality of life.

Now you are telling us--don't worry, terrorists only blew up one wing. Disregard that rubble. Or, alternatively--that part had to go. It's better to have a McDonalds there so the Indian people can eat good food.


Similarly, visiting any natural wonder is part of my quality of life, but even knowing it's there is also part. Even knowing that Glacier National Park is there, that there are volcanoes in the Hawaiian Islands, that there are places in Washington state and Oregon that approach the storied "forest primeval" (not to mention obvious destinations like the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone) is part of my quality of life--and I suspect I am not alone in this.

As a musican I would think you can understand this. I'm sorry for you if you don't.

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is a perfect case in point--and this could possibly be why this issue has called forth such extreme language on the part of usually unflappable folk--consider the the words "despise you" from McGrath and "bastard" from Katlaughing.

And the fact that it is the US which is considering this sacrilege--there's no other word for it--is another factor.

The term "energy independence" is bandied about. The suspicion may arise--and, based on Bush's track record, it seems extremely plausible--that his goal is for the US to be self-sufficient as much as possible so that he can continue to thumb his nose at the rest of the world, and continue his arrogant ways, which have alienated the vast majority of the educated the world over. The 48% of the US voting electorate who tried to stop the continuing tragedy of Bush's rule are at pains to disassociate ourselves from him whenever we travel abroad.

Also consider one of Bush's goals not trumpeted as much as the energy independence shibboleth. He is aware foreign bankers are not happy with the US deficit. But rather than touch his sacrosanct tax cuts (which disproportionately benefit the rich--any argument here?)--he has included at least $2.4 billion in oil leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in the budget just for 2007.

Also, consider the goal of the drilling--to lower oil prices or keep them from dramatically rising. As I recall, US gas prices are already some of the lowest, if not the lowest, of the industrialized world. US consumption of oil is far out of proportion to US population in the world.

How serious is the US in dealing with conservation of oil? Well perhaps a clue is in 2 stories recently in the Wall St Journal. Fuel economy has been worsening since the late 1980's. "Last year, even as gas prices were surging, average fuel economy fell again"--WSJ 22 March 2005. "The makers of SUV's , already under fire for poor gas mileage and safety issues, have a new strategy to reverse sagging sales: putting bigger engines in them"--WSJ 24 March 2005.

You seem to think there are grounds for compromise. The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is now in a "pristine" state--your word. A synonym is "virgin". Would you like to discuss degrees of virginity? Do you understand why compromise is not possible?

The US is the richest nation in the world. The question of the Monarch butterflies in Mexico is much more complex--somehow the poor who live near the Monarchs' winter refuge must be employed so they need not chop down the trees in those mountains for fuel or employment.

But the US has absolutely no excuse for violating the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The Alaska natives closest to the proposed drilling are already prosperous, due to proximity to the current North Slope activity.

Bush supporters' cry of alarm at 70% dependence on foreign oil rings hollow for many reasons. First, Canada and Venezuela are a large part of that 70%. Second, the very people allegedly concerned about dependence on foreign oil are also the ones who have most strongly resisted both federal requirements for non-fossil fuel use and fuel economy standards. I have noted this phenomenon for years in the editorial pages of the Journal.

How much help will the oil from the refuge help the dependency problem? Defenders of drilling admit that the drilling will likely not be fully onstream til at least 2017.

The US Energy Information Agency, a branch of the US Dept of Energy, hence likely an objective source, predicts that in 2020, 62% of the oil needed by the US will be imported, and if the HIGH END estimates (my emphasis) of oil from the Refuge are accurate, Refuge oil could reduce this to 60% (source MSNBC 18 Mar 2005).

That's right, a 2% difference.

So, for a 2% difference, you are advocating that the US, richest nation in the world, turn its back on any stewardship of natural wonders--primarily to preserve the Bush tax cuts.



By the way ,your suggestion that environmentalists "disseminate..ecological research..particularly.. in China" is either a red herring or disingenuous, or both.

Against China's headlong industrialization push, even their home-grown ecologists have little clout--which I suspect you already know. There have been excellent WSJ articles on this point, on mercury pollution, among others.

And the pipeline is 30 years old. Good point. So it sounds as if we can look forward to huge expenditures to maintain it, with progressively more chances for cracks and breaks (and spills) as it ages. If there is more oil in it, the spills when they occur will be more serious. Why is this not so?

You are also incorrectly assuming something in my earlier post. The drilling I am referring to--again courtesy of the WSJ article--is not just exploratory but actually extracting oil. The majors are skittish, some of the minors not so much.

Advocates for drilling are trying to draw a blatantly false distinction between conservation and environmentalism. We drilling opponents are not proposing an Earth First! type action like chaining yourself to a tree to prevent its "harvesting", as the timber industry likes to put it.

However, it's clear to me, and probably others, that anybody with both a head and a heart, and that, I'm sure includes the vast majority of Mudcatters, would reject this ill-considered and unnecessary drilling.

Conclusions (at long last):

1) Bush is hiding his real goal, which is to preserve tax cuts at all costs.

2) There are compelling reasons, far beyond monetary considerations, which argue passionately against any drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

3) The burden is still on those in favor of drilling in the Refuge. The case for it has not been made.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 12:20 AM

Ron: A bit in awe at your well written and lengthy post. I'm tired and I am going to spend the weekend doing something else. Back to front:
1) The economic value of half a trillion bucks speaks for itself regardless of what Bush or anyone else's real goal is. (As I've already said, there is no possibilit of US energy independence, this is purely a fiscal and strategic value.
2) This is a value judgement which the American people are entitled to make through their legislature and Political Action Committees. You may be right.
3) A case HAS been made. See above. A case has been made against.ditto.

As for music. As for folk songs. Cuts both ways. See below:


ARTIST: Stan Rogers
TITLE: The Idiot
Lyrics and Chords


I often take these night shift walks when the foreman's not around
I turn my back on the cooling stacks and make for open ground
Far out beyond the tank farm fence where the gas flare makes no sound
I forget the stink and I always think back to that eastern town

/ D ABm G Bm / G D - A / 1st / G D DA D /

I remember back six years ago, this western life I chose
And every day, the news would say some factory's going to close
Well, I could have stayed to take the dole, but I'm not one of those
I take nothing free, and that makes me an idiot, I suppose

   So I bid farewell to the eastern town I never more will see
   But work I must so I eat this dust and breathe refinery
   Oh I miss the green and the woods and streams and I don't like cowboy clothes
   But I like being free and that makes me an idiot I suppose

   / G D A D / G D Bm A / D ABm G Bm / G D DA D /

So come all you fine young fellows who've been beaten to the ground
This western life's no paradise, but it's better than lying down
Oh, the streets aren't clean, and there's nothing green, and the hills are dirty brown
But the government dole will rot your soul back there in your hometown

   So bid farewell to the eastern town you never more will see
   There's self-respect and a steady check in this refinery
   You will miss the green and the woods and streams and the dust will fill your nose
   But you'll be free, and just like me, an idiot, I suppose


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,McGrath of Harlow
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 05:04 AM

"This is a value judgement which the American people are entitled to make"

The US Government has the power and responsibility to make these kind of decisons about a far away territory purchased through a dubious financial deal between a bunch of politicians in the USA and Russia back in the 19th century.

That implies a duty to care for that territory. A duty to care for a place or a person is not the same as a right to exploit. What is proposed is in essence dishonourable, and a breach of stewardship. I believe it will be recognised as such in the future, which is why I used the word "despise" in that context.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 07:51 AM

McG:

By your reasoning the verb 'despise' should also apply to another far away territory purchased through a dubious financial deal between a "bunch of politicians in the USA" (One of them was Thomas Jefferson, I'll let you look it up) and Napoleonic France back in the 19th century...Almost exactly two hundred years, in fact.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 09:12 AM

The term despise referred to what I anticipate will be the way American in the future will see this, recognising it as a betrayal of trust and of a duty of stewardship which had previously been recognised, on the part of the appointed leaders of this generation.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 10:45 PM

Robomatic--

Re: Stan Rogers "The Idiot". A great song, really stirring especially the way he does it. I always imagine it to be an anthem for lots of rugged individualists, especially in Western Canada.

But-- the moral of the song does not hold in this case--it's a false parallel. As I pointed out, the Alaska natives who would stand to benefit from the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge drilling are not on the dole, in fact are already prosperous due to proximity to North Slope activity already going on. So the analogy fails.

As I said, anybody with both a head and a heart should recognize that drilling in the Refuge --(rather than addressing either the needless and inequitable Bush tax cuts or serious conservation measures like enforced fuel economy standards)--shows grotesquely distorted priorities.

Do you want to associate yourself with that?

In fact, as I said, the case for drilling in the Refuge has NOT been made. You have provided no info as to why it is necessary.

My source, part of Bush's government, as I said, states that the difference in energy dependence will be about 2% with the Refuge oil.

The drilling will destroy something priceless.

If you are in favor of this, that would be, to say the least, disappointing.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Mar 05 - 06:25 PM

The Alaska natives are not in agreement on the ANWR act. The Inupiat are in favor of it and talk about jobs; the Gwich'in are against it and talk about heritage and quality of life. In this world today, given our yearnings for peace and sustainability, which view do we lend more credence? Especially when we know that the day is coming when we have to turn to alternative means of combustion and commerce. I don't believe for a moment that bright inventive minds are not out there.

robomatic, I am aware that, like you, more Alaskans than not favor the drilling. My position is that if we do *not* drill now, we will not have committed an irrevocable act. If the day ever comes that we *must* have more oil, hang the consequences, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge will still be there for development. That day has not arrived.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 26 Mar 05 - 08:15 PM

Ron, Ebbie:

I want to be clear on what is meant by a "case being made". In my first creationary post I felt that I was setting the case for both, clear of the hyperboles of the extremists on both sides. I do not consider myself an extremist. I consider myself somewhat better informed than a lot of folk.

If I was in a more conservative forum, I would be stressing the environmental arguments against knee-jerk pro-development under all conditions stance. But I am not in that forum.

ANWR development may or may not impact me personally, very probably it won't, in other words, I am not really arguing my pocketbook. I love the wilderness of Alaska very much, but in all honesty, I'm more of a tree person, and "ain't no trees" in the small part of ANWR that's going to get drilled. My job in those parts has been arranging to put power poles in to string the electric and comm. lines. So I tend to leave a 'forest' where none was before. But that job is over.
I've already said that the USA will remain dependent on imported oil. But having this ANWR oil, and having it soon, will save a significant amount of dollars, and provide petroleum from Amercain sources. If the reserves are as postulated, on the order of 10 Billion barrels, they are worth on the order of half a trillion bucks and will last at least 20 years. This is balanced against primarilly aesthetic values, because there is no endangerment to wildlife species, and as I said above, environmental dangers are pretty well documented and not significant, especially when compared to what's already up there. That's what I mean when I refer to and 'incremental' difference. For God's sake, there's an 800 mile honkin' pipeline already there and a much more intrusive 800 plus miles of road already in place. As the bumper sticker says: "Jesus died for your sins, make it worth his while!"

A lot of money is spent right now on keeping the oil producing areas under observation. The environmentalists get to go up there. The feds go up there. The State gets tax revenue, and there are so many oil companies up there they watch each other. It's positively Stalinesque. How much better to harvest the oil NOW while the infrastructure is as good as it will ever be and the watchdogs are strong and active. Anything else will be done by smaller companies in a diminishing industry in a weaker economy, and in those conditions the environmental care is the first to go.

As for the Inupiaqs being primarilly in favor of oil development and the Gwich'in primarilly against, this is correct as far as I know, but subject to change as the economic and political winds do blow. The Barrow area is not rich, though a few local politicians are rumored to be quite well off. The Gwich'in are actually much further away from the area, well south by hundreds of miles. Their concern has been that caribou migration routes might change due to the construction at the northern extreme of their domain, making subsistence more expensive as they may have to drive their machines further out to reach their prey. The situation is ripe for negotiation.

As for the use of Stan Rogers song, I wasn't trying to make an analogy. As I said, music as an art "cuts both ways". Stan Rogers' song gave a workers' eye view of why people can be pro-development. I think no better song could be found. I've sung it to myself many times while walking out "beyond the tank farm where the gas flare makes no sound".


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 26 Mar 05 - 08:56 PM

Sorry to post twicet in a row, but I am a fan of Thomas Friedman and his column is somewhat apropos:

Geo Green By Example


He visited Alaska four years ago and gave a very good presentation at a Governor sponsored function in Anchorage. He also flew over the North Slope and put out a column against development in ANWR. He called it "Drilling In The Cathedral." I found a copy of the text but not a link:

March 2, 2001
Drilling in the Cathedral
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN


Listening to President Bush's speech about his budget the other night, you could hear the theme song for his administration: "Don't Start Thinkin' About Tomorrow."

The short translation of the Bush speech is: Hey, it's not the government's money, it's your money. It's not your children's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, it's your refuge, and you can drill for oil there if you want. It's not your national debt, it's your grandchildren's national debt.
Geez, and they said the Clintonites were self-absorbed - me-me, I-I,
now-now, yuppies. What about this crowd?

I'll let the experts point out the irresponsibility built into the Bush budget. As my colleague Paul Krugman, a real economist, has deftly explained, there is no way Mr. Bush's budget numbers can work without making
wildly optimistic surplus projections, or stealing from future generations,
or taking risks no serious person would take with his family's budget.
Having just visited Alaska, though, I'm troubled by what such thinking can
do to the environment. What happened to the word "conservation"? Has it gone
the way of "liberal"? Are we no longer allowed to call for conservation
without engendering catcalls? America has 5 percent of the world's
population, but consumes nearly 25 percent of world oil supplies. Yes, some
speechwriter did slip one reference to conservation into Mr. Bush's speech,
but only after he first emphasized his favored approach to our energy
deficit - more "production."

I could understand, if we were down to our last barrels of oil and our very
lifestyle were threatened, that we might risk believing the oil companies
that they can drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, in northern
Alaska, without damage. But we are so far away from that. We have not even
begun to explore how just a little conservation, or a small, painless
increase in energy efficiency, could relieve us from even thinking about
risking one of the earth's most pristine environments.

Check out the Web site of the Natural Resources Defense Council
(www.NRDC.org). It notes that the most credible estimates indicate that the
Arctic Refuge contains about 3.2 billion barrels of economically recoverable
crude oil - less than America consumes in six months. Risking the Arctic
Refuge to extract that pittance of oil is nuts, when it could be painlessly
extracted through better conservation and efficiency. As the Defense Council
points out, by simply increasing average fuel efficiency on new cars,
S.U.V.'s and light trucks from 24 to 39 miles per gallon over the next
decade, we would save 51 billion barrels of oil - more than 15 times the
likely yield from the Arctic. At the same time, if we just required
replacement tires for cars and light trucks to be as fuel- efficient as the
original tires on new vehicles (which have lower rolling resistance), we
would save 5.4 billion barrels of oil over the next 50 years, far more than
in the Arctic Refuge.

The Arctic Refuge is a unique environmental cathedral - a 19-million- acre
expanse where mountains meet ocean, where grizzly bears meet polar bears,
where 130,000 caribou migrate each spring to give birth on the coastal
plain, where an entire ecosystem is preserved and where Mother Nature is
totally in charge. This is not Yellowstone Park, with campsites and R.V.'s.
The original idea behind the refuge's creation was to save an area of pure
wilderness, in which there would be no maps, virtually no roads and no
development. When the Bush team says it can drill in such wilderness without
harming it, it's like saying you can do online trading in church on your
Palm Pilot without disturbing anyone. It violates the very ethic of the
place.

"Wilderness as a concept is immutable," explains Richard Fineberg, an
Anchorage-based environmental consultant. "It is like perfection - there are
no degrees to it. Oil development in a wilderness, no matter how sensitive,
changes the very nature of it. It means it's no longer wilderness. If the
drill worshipers prevail in the Arctic Refuge, then there will be no place
on this continent where a unique environment will be safe from greed and
short-term interests."

What will you tell your grandchildren when they ask: How could you destroy a
unique wilderness area to buy six months' supply of gasoline? Why didn't you
just improve gas mileage a little each year? Why didn't you lift just a tiny
finger for conservation? Weren't you thinking about tomorrow at all?


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Mar 05 - 09:54 PM

"If the reserves are as postulated..." robotmatic Postulated by whom, robo? As you can see in Friedman's column there is no such agreement.

"I could understand, if we were down to our last barrels of oil and our very lifestyle were threatened, that we might risk believing the oil companies that they can drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, in northern Alaska, without damage. But we are so far away from that." Thomas Friedman As I was saying.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 07:14 AM

Darn tootin' Ebbie. When ya don't know you're left with estimates. That's what I said, and it remains true until actual exploration is made.

I don't always agree with Thomas Friedman, but I always read or listent to him first. His talk in early 2001 in Anchorage was excellent. It was primarilly about the internet's effect on the modern world. He referred to the creation of 'super empowered individuals,' people who extended their power through organization over the web. I took notes. He mentioned the (then only) attempt to destroy the World Trade Center by Ramsy Yusef, and he mentined the threat of Osama Bin Laden. they taped it and broadcast it locally about a month later. I think I even have a copy somewhere.

A very worthwhile commentator.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 11:05 AM

"If our very lifestyle were threatened"--exactly.

The only "lifestyle" which is even close to being threatened is the one that presumes it's every American's God-given right to drive a more powerful SUV every year and never have to pay any more for gas than he or she did last year.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 12:27 PM

robomatic, in your opening post you said: "Oil Spills do happen, but there is a very rigorous definition of what constitutes an oil spill. I believe it is a single drop.

In actuality, they are NOT required to report a spill unless it exceeds 55 gallons.. That's a far cry from one drop.

AP reported today that BP and its associates failed to report at least two spills of drilling muds (which include crude oil) of as much as 294 gallons.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 01:36 PM

Ebbie:
I appreciate your concern on this issue. I hope you stay interested in it and do not find my posts boring.

I want to be fair to both you and myself on your message re: reportable oil spills.

I was working up and down the Trans Alaska Pipeline (TAPS) on a special one-of-a-kind inspection project. We were not involved with day to day facility work, and we weren't "hands-on". We had to be trained for a week before we were allowed access to the facilities, and we needed specific orientation for each place we visited. Part of our operating instructions were to report oil spills of any kind of any size, "1 drop minimum". When we fueled our vehicles we had to put oil absorbent 'diapers' underneath the filler nozzle, etc. etc.

There were environmental regulations in place to a severe degree. We were not allowed to approach a self operating electrical valve in the yard because there was an active bird nest in it.

The field of oil spill reportage is loaded with data, and goes from Alaska legislation to bureacratic definition. I have looked a bit into it and have not found a 'smoking gun' but I did find this from a bulletin issued by a very official looking third party document: "Reported volumes of North Slope spills vary by more than six orders of magnitude from 0.006 to 925 bbl (0.336 to 38,350 gallons)"

oil spill info


The point being that in order to have that kind of information, someone is reporting very small spills including under a gallon. Whether or not those small volumes are tabulated into the report that YOU saw is another matter entirely that you will have to supply more information on.

Drilling muds are just that, concoctions of different ground materials in order to form a viscous seal around a drilling shaft. They are assumed to mix or absorb small amount of crude oil, hence spilled muds contain spilled oil, even if a barrel of mud contains a few spoonfuls of oil.

The fact that AP can assert that BP failed to report spills shows that there is oversight in place, otherwise, how would we know. My point is that effective oversight costs money. At this point in Arctic Slope operations even though everyone is talking about tightening the belt, there is a very well run and effective system in place RIGHT NOW. Should economic hard times hit us, should we feel 'desperate' for oil, I am positive that the first thing to suffer will be oversight, the second thing to suffer will be quality of personnel and operations. You'll see the big companies sell out to smaller companies and the smaller companies will rape the resource and go bankrupt. This is why oversight is very important.

My fear is that the environmentalists who oppose this development will oppose it because they are strong, leading to a situation where when they are weak, they will not only be in no position to oppose it, but won't even know what damage gets done, leading to far worse consequences for the environment.

Right now you can go on line and get all sorts of details as to the oil spills.

Someday you may not get any details.


Ignorance is far worse than bad news.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 02:04 PM

Robomatic, none of what you write bores me- I don't question your agenda or your approach on your posts. Your integrity shines through. I am challenging only conclusions- as well as accepting challenges to mine.

"Part of our operating instructions were to report oil spills of any kind of any size, "1 drop minimum" robomatic

I understand. But "reporting" to whom? Just to your employers/superiors? According to the 2003 agreement that BP and Nabors signed, they were to report anything that exceeded 55 gallons. That report was to the Federal watchdogs, I believe.

I've tried to find online this particular report that appeared in the Juneau Empire this morning, headlined 'Regulators: North Slope Spills Not Reported' but have not succeeded.

"AP can assert that BP failed to report spills shows that there is oversight in place, otherwise, how would we know." robomatic

The investigation took place in response to Chuck Hamel's (an industry critic) charge that BP, et al, had unreported blowouots. The regulators decided there had been no 'blowouts' but there had been at least two incidents of unreported spillage, one of which, it was determined, consisted of up to 294 gallons.

This was reported by the Associated Press.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 02:34 PM

Thanks Ebbie, you flatter me.

I'm actually trying to softpedal any conclusions of mine but help people make their own conclusions based on what is really happening up there which is frequently misrepresented on both sides of the issue.

My project, which was in the mid 90's, would've basically had me report 'up the chain of command' so my responsibility was to report to my boss and he had to report to his, etc. etc. The people I worked with and myself would've had nothing to gain by not reporting spills because those were our instructions. But it wasn't our focus. Our focus was on safety issues.

Chuck Hamel is a well known bete noir among the oil companies. I believe he's a whistleblower, which has a specific industry meaning and status, but I have not followed his activities for some time. He is not a bullsh*tter, that's for sure, in other words what he says should be listened to. doesn't make him always right (or wrong), however. Basically, he's a player with knowledge and history.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 09:10 AM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,WYS
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 10:17 AM

So robo, referring to your first post-- procedurally, is TODAY'S VOTE the vote that will bring it into reality? What was yesterday's vote? And what the heck did Bush sign yesterday about energy?

Thanks in advance,

~Susan


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 12:49 PM

Hey Susan: Are you also WYSIWYG? Just curious.

I started this thread when there was an initial vote towards including it in the budget. I'm not sure what has to be included in the budget since private enterprise foots the bill exploration wise.

Exploration in ANWR is what's being voted on, and the primary vote would be over approval to allow private drilling on public lands. Please review this thread, there is a lot of info in there, some of it is even true.

Right now I believe the House has voted to approve drilling in ANWR. The Senate has not. It is not a slam dunk that the Senate would approve it.

Even if the Senate approves it, there has to be a sale of exploratioin drilling rights, and someone has to care enough to buy those rights, then hire someone to go out there and look. It takes time, money and effort. There was a time when the oil companies in the Arctic were more dependent on the oil available there, but those companies have been absorbed into larger companies with global reach. The big companies have taken the long view and are spending their efforts in the Gulf of Mexico for the time being. It is still a big world out there.

Exploration drilling is NOT the same as developmental drilling. The effect on the environment of Exploration drilling is very minor. No roads, no drilling pads, some small pipes and valves left where the mobile drill rig was positioned. Due to modern directional drilling techniques, a rig stays in one place and can make many different drill routes over many square miles. This is not because drilling folk care about the environment (although you might be surprised, the people I've run into are very decent on the sharp end of the business), but because modern techniques save money, a lot of money.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: wysiwyg
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 12:59 PM

Yes, robo, I am Susan. I'll try to digest all that. Thanks for such a sensible approach!!!!

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 04:28 PM

Thank you for your politeness and interest!


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Bill D
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 07:52 PM

question: Do the oil exploration companies make any money just from test drilling? Or do they bear the cost totally? That is, is there any economic benefit to anyone UNTIL oil is discovered?

In reference to some of the posts from last month, I can't see why we are not doing more with wind power and hybrid/electric cars. Even if they WON'T run 500 miles on a charge, 250 miles would cover an immense proportion of the daily trips by most Americans. This dancing and flirting and dodging with better alternatives MUST relate to someone's money and vested interests.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: emjay
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 10:08 PM

I went on a tour of the North Slope drilling sites about 12 years ago. It was with a group of staffers from Republican offices. I worked for a Denocratic state senator so I don't know why I was included. I do know the language from our tour guide was a lot different on this tour than it was on another tour a friend took. That on was was meant for Democrats. Those people know their audience. I heard a lot about burdensome regulations and what was going to happen "When Anwar comes on line."
The point is regulations in effect now may be changed when people who regard them as burdensome have been in power a little longer. Pumping the oil is all that matters to many.
And I know of unreported or underreported spills which have already happened. In the meantime damage from the Exxon Valdez spill continues.
Anytime oil is pumped from the ground and transported there will be risk of spills and other damage.
The only reason we are so eager to open the wildlife refuge is that we are unwilling to change our wasteful ways. The US already uses a huge and disporportionate share of the world's energy. There is a finite supply of oil and generations to come who might need it.
A few simple measures implemented now would save more oil in a few years than ANWR will produce. We all know them; reduce speed, make sure tires are properly inflated, car pool, walk, ride bikes, stay home, quit driving large heavy vehicles. (Driving from my home about 40 miles outside Anchorage, I always see truck after truck, after SUV, after Hummer with one person in each. At least we are in a fuel-efficient 5-year-old Toyota Corolla.)


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 12:07 AM

question: Do the oil exploration companies make any money just from test drilling? Or do they bear the cost totally? That is, is there any economic benefit to anyone UNTIL oil is discovered?

BillD: I DON'T REALLY KNOW but I suspect it is along the lines of tax breaks possibly given for exploration by the state and of course capital losses go against profits and result in reduced taxes. But I believe for the most part exploratory drilling is money 'down the hole'. ARCO was losing its shirt when it drilled hole after hold in the 60's and it was an executive decision at the very top out of their LA office which resulted in one last hole which discovered the Prudhoe 'elephant'.

In reference to some of the posts from last month, I can't see why we are not doing more with wind power and hybrid/electric cars. Even if they WON'T run 500 miles on a charge, 250 miles would cover an immense proportion of the daily trips by most Americans. This dancing and flirting and dodging with better alternatives MUST relate to someone's money and vested interests.

Someone's got to put up the research money or get it out of the government. Some other governments have done a lot of work with wind power, and steady progress is being made with solar power. They will be larger factors in our future but right now the big power generators are: Hydro, nuclear, oil, gas, and coal.

I went on a tour of the North Slope drilling sites about 12 years ago. It was with a group of staffers from Republican offices. I worked for a Denocratic state senator so I don't know why I was included. I do know the language from our tour guide was a lot different on this tour than it was on another tour a friend took. That on was was meant for Democrats. Those people know their audience. I heard a lot about burdensome regulations and what was going to happen "When Anwar comes on line."
The point is regulations in effect now may be changed when people who regard them as burdensome have been in power a little longer. Pumping the oil is all that matters to many.
And I know of unreported or underreported spills which have already happened. In the meantime damage from the Exxon Valdez spill continues.
Anytime oil is pumped from the ground and transported there will be risk of spills and other damage.
The only reason we are so eager to open the wildlife refuge is that we are unwilling to change our wasteful ways. The US already uses a huge and disporportionate share of the world's energy. There is a finite supply of oil and generations to come who might need it.
A few simple measures implemented now would save more oil in a few years than ANWR will produce. We all know them; reduce speed, make sure tires are properly inflated, car pool, walk, ride bikes, stay home, quit driving large heavy vehicles. (Driving from my home about 40 miles outside Anchorage, I always see truck after truck, after SUV, after Hummer with one person in each. At least we are in a fuel-efficient 5-year-old Toyota Corolla.)


Pretty much all the cars in my extended family are small Toyotas. That's one great car-making company. But Americans to this day are responding to advertisements about powerful engines and big cars. Ford hasn't been marketing the Excursion for nothing, GM hasn't been hawking the Hummer to noone. We will learn when the prices go up and stay up.

I still remember in the late 90's when the price of oil was about $9 a barrell and the popular news was quoting experts who said the price could stay like that for years.

If you read the earlier messges in this thread you will see that no one is claiming that ANWR oil will do anything other than defray the pain and cost to some extent, IF THERE IS A SIGNIFICANT DEPOSIT up there which we don't actually know. But when you're in pain, you take pain medicine if only to make the pain less while you work for recovery. At $50 a barrel, 10 Billion barrels of recoverable oil is a nice piece of change, and it's all in the United States and we already have the big pipeline to do most of the transportation.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 07:37 AM

Robo--

And you're now saying that "exploratory drilling" will not lead to a lot more "exploratory drilling", and then to "developmental drilling"? (since all sides agree there is in fact SOME oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge).

What planet did you say you are living on?

There's a reason it's called "pristine" -- (synonym--"virgin")--the word taken from your own first post on this thread--please don't try to back away from it.

As I said earlier, would you care to debate degrees of virginity?


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,Larry K
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 02:48 PM

Try this experiment- go to the largest room in your house or office.   Drop a penny on the floor.   That represents the amount of space drilling in ANWR would make up.   See if this violates the "pristine" beauty of your room.

Every barrel of oil from ANWR is one less from the middle east and one step closer to independency.    Renewable energy is the future, but it is not here yet.   I am currently working on using renewable energy to power two of the largest sporting events in the world.   The first one is proceeding very nicely.   (tell you more later after the contracts are signed) Here are some facts about renewables.

Current cost for my utility to produce energy:   under $20 per MW
Current cost of wind energy in my state


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,Larry K
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 02:54 PM

Sorry- hit the wrong button my mistake:

current cost to produce electricity    under $20 per MW
current cost to produce wind energy          $58 per MW
current cost wind (other states)             $35-$40 MW
current cost biomass                         $45-$50 MW
current cost solar                            $80-$120 MW
small impact hydro                            $80-$120 MW
geothermal                                    none in my state

According to global solutions 76% of all future renewable energy will come from wind farms in the next 15 years.   Right now renewable enrgy is not economical.   I cant ask customers to pay double or triple for electricity from renewable standards.   Renewable energy needs to come down to the $30 MW range to be competitive.   Until then, we will need oil.    Right now, ANWR looks like the best possiblity for oil.

PS:   Just celebrated earth day by planting 4,200 trees in one hour (new guiness world record) along with Atlanta and Seattle.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 05:12 PM

Re: Ron Davies and Larry K:

I guess I'd challenge both of you, Ron to consider the likelihood that you will be backpacking in the northern reaches of ANWR and Larry you don't give any kind of information as to what those numbers really mean: Dollars per installed generating equipment? The cost of energy from those sources? Electric energy is sold by the Kilowatt HOUR or Megawatt HOUR. Retail home-owner's costs vary from $0.05 to $0.25 per Kilowatt Hour. Scaling up that would make $50. to $250 per Megawatt HOUR ignoring demand charges which I suppose might make sense with what you say allowing for wholesale cost reduction. I'm surprised the alternative energy costs you quote are so reasonable. And renewable energy may not have to go down as much as you say if the fossil fuel costs go up, thereby increasing the point at which they are competitive.

The real danger to the atmospheric environment will probably come from cheap coal, which will not only release carbon dioxide, but carbon monoxide and sulfur.

The real savior will probably be nuclear for taking care of base loads. Wind and solar and some form of mass energy storage will play increasing rolls.

In the United States there is great potential for conservation gains.

Congratulations on the trees.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 10:52 PM

Robo--

1) Quality of life ( expanded definition--see my earlier post, in which I explained it in detail) (24 March 2005 11:31 PM)

2)Stewardship

You ignore them both.


Also, still waiting for your opening argument on degrees of virginity.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 11:26 PM

Larry--

I echo Robo's congratulations on the trees, and obviously it's good you're working on renewable energy.

However:

1) What are your feelings on the recently defeated amendment (to the energy bill) which required auto manufacturers to raise MPG?

2) There are many ways to lessen dependence on foreign oil without touching the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, which, as I noted earlier, would only make a difference of about 2% in energy dependence, according to Bush's own government.

3) In addition to Robo's comments, you provide no source for your info--you should know by now that in order to be taken seriously around here, you need to give it.   Or perhaps being taken seriously is not your goal.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 23 Apr 05 - 03:07 AM

Ron:

I answered your post of 24 March 2005 with mine of 25 March 2005. I'm not really disagreeing with you, just saying that the oil under northern tip of ANWR *may* be significant. Balanced against esthetic concerns not endangered critters. We are in a good position to require that those esthetic concerns be addressed by big oil, as opposed to a future where we're all more desperate and poorer.

As for degrees of virginity, there was a beautiful young woman crying by herself alone on a sunny beach. A handsome young man came by. Noticing her tears, he asked her what was wrong.
"I've never been kissed"
He looked down at her, smiled, bent down and planted a definite yet caressive smack on her lips. "Now you've been kissed!"
...
Ron, I'm going to stop there. Surely you've heard that one before!


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 23 Apr 05 - 01:56 PM

Robo--

So please define a kiss that the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge would be happy with. I would venture to say it might include a photographer.

Would it include an "exploratory" oil well?

Give your head a shake.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 01:06 PM

Ron:

Forgive me if I posit that you're English. I haven't got a blind idea of what you're trying to say in your previous post. But it has all the self-righteous clipped indignation that I've enjoyed with some other denizens of Old Blighty.

You should come over and take a hike in the region. I'd be happy to have you (I have a lot of room). And I should, too.

robo, who is shaking his head indeed


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: dianavan
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 01:07 PM

I thought you that you were supposed to give as much as you take.

Lets face it, drilling for oil is not harmless.

Not only that, there's not enough oil there to justify the damage or to meet the needs of the consumers.

Why bother?


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 02:04 PM

* robomatic, I'm not sure how far one can take the analogy: Some years ago there was a company that was trying to reopen an old mining operation just over the hill from Juneau. They proposed many new technologies but the inherent risks could not be denied.

That is a whole separate story. My point is that while they were waiting for the permits to start mining, they did exploration mining. In the process, they despoiled a pristine little valley with 30-foot high piles of rock and rubble that stand there today. In the end, it is difficult to say they were NOT mining.

* As to the costs of exploration and the possibility (make that 'likelihood') of dry holes, I believe that robomatic is correct in saying that those costs are borne by themselves - offset by tax breaks and state and federal monies for exploration.

Conoco Phillips recently had to stop saying in their television ads that it cost more to drill for oil in Alaska than anywhere else, when it was revealed that out of the 38 most costly regions, Alaska was in 19th place. Now Conoco Phillips just says that Alaska is "one of the most expensive regions", etc.

* Last week a huge (941 feet long) tanker stopped in Juneau on its celebratory journey to Valdez. It is the first double-hulled ship to go online since it was federally mandated after the disastrous 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound.

* Last winter, of course, a tanker split in two off the Aleutian Islands. Far less oil escaped from its holds but at this point we still don't know what the effects on wildlife will be.   Every day - and for a long time to come - single hulled ships, each and every one loaded with life-altering potential, travel the northern waters.

* I still would like to know whether the natural predators on caribou are in abundance on the North Slope or whether it is possible that the caribou flourish in such huge numbers because of a diminished predator population.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 02:04 PM

There's a lot of bother in 500 Billion Dollars

There's oil there for 20 to 40 years of pumping.

Drilling for oil is not harmless. Driving to work is not harmless. Eating too much starch is not harmless. Throwing a banana peel on the floor is not harmless.

I give and I give and I give.

Take that!


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 02:07 PM

Ebbie:
We cross-posted. My little effort above was in answer to Dianavan.

Your post has real questions, statements and information. Your points are well taken.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 24 Apr 05 - 11:00 PM

I'm American.

I'll take your observation as a compliment.

My wife, Jan, is English, flavored by Irish and Italian--but my style is my own, as yours is your own.


More on the debate later--she needs access to the computer.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 12:07 AM

Actually I probably should have pointed out that Davies is Welsh, in fact a very common Welsh name. So I would likely not be English anyway.

But that would be thread creep--later on, back to the topic.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 07:41 AM

No problem Ron. I've spent time with Kiwis and Ozzies and a few odd Poms and it colored my expressiveness but I never got around to spelling color with a 'u' or aluminum with an extra 'i'.

And the Welsh are swell. I think Thomas Jefferson and Jesse James were Welsh and we know how well they turned out.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,Larry K
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 09:22 AM

Ron/Robomatic:

The prices I quoted were generation costs in megawatt hours.   I did not include transmission costs to keet the comparisons apples to apples.   I should have used MWh to be more accurate.

source for numbers.   My utility (DTE) charges about $.095 per killowatt hour.   If you go to the Michigan Public Service Commission web site- they post the PSCR or power service cost recovery (cost of generation)   This is where I got the cost of electricity.   As a side note Consumers Energy - the other large utility in our state has an average PSCR at about $30 per MWh.

The wind cost is the actual contract between the three windmills in Michigan and Consumers energy. They have quoted me the same rates.   Community energy and other wind developers have quoted me the prices I list for wind energy in other States. The solar numbers were from a Unisolar presentation at a renewable energy conference in Traverse City last year.   Note- Solar also has a high cost of equipment you have to factor in.   Small hydro I got from the MEEA (midwest Energy Efficiecny Alliance) conference in Chicago 2 years ago.   They have one of the best energy conferences in the coutry each year in Sept.   Check out their webwite.   Last year they has 6 public service commissioners along with the #3 person in the department of energy among other great speakers.

That is my sourcing.   You can accept it or reject it- but they numbers are real.   The public service commssion has requested that we sign up 60,000 customers for renewable energy by 2008.   That would put our renewable program in the top 5 voluntary renewable programs in the country.

We are also filing a net metering tarriff this week to buy back energy from people with renewable sources in their home.   I am also involved in a PAYS (pay as you save) pilot to fund energy efficiency projects on their uitlity bill.   This was done in New Hampshire and we are looking at it.   I also have a speech for the UAW on Friday about saving money on your energy bill.   should be a busy week.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,Larry K
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 09:30 AM

I wanted to address the higher fule milage issue in a separate e-mail.   I heard the most rediculous presentation from GM on this issue.    It was made by Dr. Tom Walton at the Fed Reserve Bank energy conference on March 14 2005.   (you asked for sources)

Dr Walton argued why it was bad for the USA to have higher gas milage in cars.   Think about that for a second.   Bad to have higher gas milage.

His logic was that higher gas milage would lead to more people driving which would cause more traffic congestion and more polution.   In addition, any oil that would be saved would be from the USA and therefore cut our USA oil production which would cost more jobs.    I couldn't believe the insanity of this argument.

That is like saying people should not eat healthy because it would hurt the junk food industry and than people would live longer which would cost more in Social Security benefits.

That is the thinking at GM.   No wonder they lost a billion dollars this last quarter.


PS:   Every other presenter posted their presentation on the Fed Reserve Bank web site for the conference except GM.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 10:48 AM

Larry K:

Thanks for posting. I share your opinion of GM, but I don't think Ford is much better, I believe their fleet mileage went down over the past 15 years below what they had predicted and aimed for.

GM already earned my ire by pretty much taking over an issue of Scientific American roughly three years ago with their shameless promotion of their hydrogen 'skateboard' concept car, full of gladsome tidings with negligible hard data or concepts. A good copy of Popular Mechanics had more content than that issue of Scientific American. A few months later a publication put out by IEEE came my way with a short article by some students who were working out a real hydrogen fuelcell vehicle and in five pages they had more hard data and experience than Scientific American.

We're seeing a real lack on the part of the US national administration to 'step up' to the plate regarding alternative energy development, but it sounds as if there are steps being taken at grass roots level towards this ideal. I just heard Thomas Friedman on the radio urging students in colleges to establish 'Hummer free' zones.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 09:22 PM

Robo--

You and I are going at this from totally different perspectives.

It really makes no difference to me if I ever go back-packing in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge--it will not change my firm conviction that it should be preserved--as is--that is with no oil drilling whatsoever----for future generations, visitors from all over the globe--and even more, for the sake of the ecological community which now exists there.

There is an intrinsic good in a wildlife refuge--which nothing but the direst circumstances can overbalance.

A difference of 2% in energy dependency doesn't even come close.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 10:27 PM

Ron:

I always appreciate hearing from you. I don't think there's anything wrong with your values or your decision.

At this point I can be perfectly satisfied if they do drill, and I won't terribly mind if they don't. I just think people have a right to know what's at stake.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Apr 05 - 11:29 PM

Interestingly, a Justin Blair article in the Juneau Empire this morning had an update on the Inupiat's (Eskimo) shifting view of the proposed drilling.

The Inupiat had been overwhelmingly in favor of opening ANWR because of jobs and because they didn't personally feel threatened by it. However, now that Governor Murkowski has kind of hinted that he didn't necessarily disapprove of offshore drilling, the Inupiat are apparently split about 50-50, with anti-drilling sentiment growing.

The article said that for the first time in memory a small anti-drilling demonstration greeted a delegation of US Senators and Cabinet Secretaries on their factfinding trip last month.

That is because, just like the Gwich'in who fear the disruption of caribou's habits, any change in which would affect their subsistence, the Inupiat fear the effect there could be on their culture and lifestyle. Whales are paramount in their culture and they are afraid that ocean drilling would send the bowhead and other whales farther afield, so to speak, and also are alarmed at the potentiality of oil spills in the waters which would have a direct effect on them.

When it appeared that no permits would be granted for ocean drilling, the village of 188 adults didn't see any serious downside to the project, but now they are afraid, in light of Murkowski's comments, that any on land drilling would lead to pressure to permit offshore drilling. (The Inupiat are the only settlemnt within the Refuge)

There is a great quote given from a resident: "When you're bringing in the whale, the feeling you get is overwhelming. Practically the entire town is at the beach hollering. It's just one big, glorious, happy day. All the crews feel we accomplished something- we just fed the town."


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: podman
Date: 26 Apr 05 - 07:56 AM

So does this mean "promote drilling to save the whales"? ;-0


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 26 Apr 05 - 08:20 AM

Ebbie: I am full of admiration at the way our Alaska representatives and leaders have been able, every time they plug oil development, to raise resistance wherever they go, from paying money to lobby Congress a few years back to the events you relate.

It was a sad day when Gov. Murkowski was elected. Never that bright, he'd used up much of his energy in the Senate and seemed to proceed with running for Governor as though he was entitled a 'retirement' level position rather than being put out to pasture. And the good folk of Alaska agreed.

I'm assuming by 'offshore' what is meant is actually drilling into the seabed via a man-made island or an offshore well. With directional drilling you can actually drill several miles 'off' shore from a site on the mainland, with no danger of involvement of sealife. There has been at least one 'offshore island' built up there but I don't know any of the details regarding its success or environmental record.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 26 Apr 05 - 11:31 AM

Oh, I don't know, robo - I've heard Murkowski described as a clown. *G* I've lived in Alaska 17 years and I'm still amazed at the people we elect. (Hey, Anchorage Mayor Begich comes across as a thinking person- is that a correct impression?)

As to offshore drilling- and I believe they are picturing the kind of drilling off the California coast - it's all in perception, isn't it. In any equation, worry weighs heavily.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 26 Apr 05 - 04:26 PM

Ebbie: Mayor Begich is one of the best native grown politicians, he got elected on a fluke naturally, which is a hilarious story its own self, although Mayor Nystrom was very capable as well. He comes from a venerable political family, his father was Congressman and unfortunately lost and never found on a light twin flight with Hale Boggs (Cokie Roberts' father) in 1972 and that is why Don Young (well known gross Alaska product) has been the Representative ever since). The continuous re-election of Don Young is cause for extreme humility on the part of all Alaskans. He is fat, dumb, but has a sort of low cunning probably derived from the brain-stem, cause there sure ain't much happenin' on points north.

I don't know enough about offshore drilling to comment on it technically or not. Natives are entitled to worry and express that worry and have those concerns addressed. In the past I spent a lot of time in native villages, though not on issues related to oil. I have also spoken to people who felt very frustrated by their native interactions. Bottom line, they are people too and quite capable of political finagling with the best of Boston pols.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ron Davies
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 06:06 AM

Heard a fascinating program on this issue on To the Point--debate program on NPR last night while coming back from rehearsal--a debate between a representative of the American Petroleum Institute and one from the Sierra Club.

The American Petroleum Instititute man had a warm mellifluous tone and was the embodiment of sweet reason. However the most telling point was the fact that even he put the difference in energy dependency with Arctic National Wildlife Refuge oil at 5%.

As I said earlier, Bush's own government (the US Energy Information Energy, a branch of the Department of Energy) puts the difference at a HIGH of 2%. I would put considerably more credence even in Bush's government than in the (possibly self-interested?) American Petroleum Institute.

But even for 5%, it's emphatically not worth it to throw away a crown jewel. And anybody who believes there will be only one road is self-deluding. Once the "virgin" aspect is gone, guess what happens.

The Sierra Club rep had, to my mind, an excellent metaphor. It's like hocking your grandmother's heirloom ring for $500 to pay a $50,000 debt--after you've done it, you are still in deep trouble--and you'll never see that ring again.

I'm still waiting for any defenders of drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to give their views on the (recently defeated) attempt to put some requirements to raise the average miles per gallon in the current energy bill.


One other thing: actually it's too bad most of us have fallen into the habit of the "ANWR" shorthand (and too bad about the title of this thread--though obviously space is a factor.)
ANWR--sounds like a Turkish pot-holder--or perhaps a "Martin-Gibsonism".

We are in fact talking about the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a vibrant--and irreplaceable--ecological community.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: GUEST,Larry K
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 10:00 AM

I support drilling in ANWR but am against MANDATORY requirement to raise the average miles per gallon.   I prefer to let the market decide.   With the current cost of gasoline, SUV and Hummer sales are down while hybrids are up.    The market will raise the average mileage by iteself.   

Companies that invested in hybrids will prosper.   Companies like GM that put all their eggs in SUV's will falter.    To me capitalism is working very well in this area.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 11:02 AM

There is a much lower risk of environmental damage from developing this resource than drilling offshore. ie: Georges Bank and Continental shelf areas. Having said that, the oil industry has been forced to take great care in preventing its offshore developments causing extensive environmental damage. Legislation, and monitoring by environmental groups has forced this rather than any corporate will, but it has proven effective. I am sure the environmental concerns for this area will force heavy penalties, fines and legislation to control the industry standards of exploration and production. Modern science and wildlife experts can mitigate the way this development encroaches on their habitat.

LarryK has hit the nail on the head when he talks about capitalism working well to control technology and consumption. Most companies and government agencies are looking at conserving oil use and using alternate sources of energy because of security and consumer demands to do so. With better education, the next generation of consumer will, because of social conscience demand we protect our environment and reduce reliance on fossil fuels even more. Industry must cater supply to demand. People will buy into the new technology, but in the end, we will still need this oil before we have sufficient affordable alternate technology to replace conventional transport. For these reasons I support the development of this oilfield.

Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: robomatic
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 11:05 AM

I think that Larry is basically right, when consumers face facts, that energy costs are higher and will go up not down, the capitalist market driven system will present 'guidance' in the same form as gravity presents to a hang-glider - necessity.

Yet I feel the government is showing a lack of leadership, and in fact is more likely to lead in the wrong direction. Government should call attention to the facts, and should encourage us to be saving energy, not declaring that the energy solution is any one thing - and funneling government funds to their friends - I'm referring to Bush's State of the Union speech two or three years ago when he 'declared' that a hydrogen economy would be the solution.

I think a leader would spearhead a cooperative program to open ANWR to exploration tied to a commitment on the part of the big auto makers to pursue fuel economy in all vehicles, and take out the "Hummer exemption" that allows businesses to make tax write-offs if they buy large enough vehicles.

There has been a sad lack to use the bully pulpit to rally an American concern for economy.

As for pronouncing A N W R, it saves time and in a way prevents a misconception - that there is going to be oil exploration in any part of it other than a small portion of the reserve which consists of relatively featureless tundra (although coastal, which is significant), and presents no hazards other than aesthetic.

As for roads, they are so expensive and time consuming to lay down that they would be minimized as a matter of economy. With some bargaining power, environmental groups might insist on a 'no access road' provision similar to what was done with the Alpine Project to the west of Prudhoe.


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Subject: RE: BS: What the Latest ANWR Vote Means
From: Ebbie
Date: 27 Apr 05 - 12:35 PM

I use ANWR (pronounced AnnWar), Ron, but I try to spell it out often to highlight the REFUGE aspect. But you are right in that many people, both in other countries and south of Alaska, have no idea what the acronym stands for.


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