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Why would David Gergen of the old Republican cadre on CNN say that the oil spill looked like an isolated small problem to begin with – (on AC360 just now)?

What exclusive narrowly defined look at the facts is he getting and was he getting at any point in this process from the very beginning that would make it look either small or isolated?

And, that was a man advising decision-makers? How many more advisors and decision-makers aren’t getting all the facts?

Who told our government leaders, including Cmmdr. Thad Allen of the Coast Guard that no one in the world besides BP or them being the ones to do it, could solve this problem and they haven’t been solving it?

In the last segment, there was a Parish President and Mayor of a Louisiana town that said when they commandeered a bunch of boats and fishermen themselves and took them out to restore the booms to protect the other marsh areas, that BP told them to anchor those boats – even as the oil was going through those passes by them?

That means – BP has legal control of all the activities and areas in the Gulf of Mexico. They have taken control of the Gulf of Mexico. What they say goes. And, if that means focusing on the capping of the spill (ineffectively) rather than protecting areas or cleaning marshes or using the fishermen and their boats to go out – then that is the law in the Gulf of Mexico. That means they own it, they control it – they have the legal marine authority over it and over every single part of the operation – to even each part that is being stopped or not allowed to happen.

When did British Petroleum – who started out as an Iranian company – and who has been selling petroleum and petroleum products to Iran despite an oil embargo and US and International sanctions against selling to Iran – get ownership of the entire Gulf of Mexico – our nation’s waters?

When did BP buy the coastal areas of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida and Texas along with the shorelines, marshes, inlets, estuaries, islands, waters – both shallow and deep that are in the Gulf of Mexico? And when did the United States of America cede control of our national waters and coasts to the British Petroleum company, the oil industries or anyone else?

That is not a friend of America – that is a criminal organization engaged in criminal activities that are illegal under numerous US and international codes of law. And, it means they are in total control of America’s waters and coasts in a way that makes them a foreign invader who has taken rights that were not leased, given nor ceded to them by anyone in any state nor in any part of our Federal government – because they weren’t their full rights to offer, give nor to sell.

The BP corporation has no right to control what states do to protect their own coastlines, even the international maritime treaties make clear that right to states – including states in the United States of America. And, our US Codes and Constitution guarantees those rights to our government, our people, our cities, our communities, our counties, our parishes, and our states. These things do not belong to BP and they have challenged and denied our National Sovereignty in the Gulf of Mexico – what is allowing them to do that? We would not allow any other nation to control the Gulf of Mexico and our shores – why would BP be allowed to do it?

BP owns and controls all activities in the Gulf of Mexico – told fishermen trying to place booms – to stand down and anchor those boats while the oil washed by them – from CNN interview with them tonight – Gulf of Mexico is our sovereign national territory and resources – When did the BP corporation buy it – which Republican ceded the Gulf of Mexico to British Petroleum?

– cricketdiane, 05-25-10

***

http://cnn.com/video/?/video/bestoftv/2010/05/25/lkl.carville.wants.bp.punished.cnn

Yes – exactly right.
I swear we need to send this oil and British Petroleum back to Parliament and the Queen. Maybe get some boxes. Well, it might take more than boxes.
– cricketdiane
***
Added On May 25, 2010

CNN’s Anderson Cooper talks with critics who discuss the effects the BP oil spill is having on wildlife.

This man is telling the truth about this mess. There is no plan.

***

At a recent meeting fishermen complained to a BP representative about illness, Barisich said, but got little response. “BP has the opinion that they are not getting sick,” he said. Barisich said the company is not providing respirators because “if they give us that type of equipment then they admit there are health hazards.”

He acknowledged that it was difficult for fishermen to prove their ailments since they seemed to recover after leaving the water. “It becomes a matter of honor,” Barisich said. “You left in the morning, you were OK. Out on the water, you’ve got a pounding headache, throwing up.”

George Arnesen was congested and coughing the day after he went shrimping off California Point. His wife, Kindra, 32, made him see a doctor. The 42-year-old was given a shot of antibiotics, an anti-inflammatory and a prescription for three medications.

“My husband’s never had a breathing problem in his life,” Kindra Arnesen said

McEwen said the fishermen the company is training are not being deployed into areas that require respirators or breathing apparatus. Those who are working for BP laying booms or skimming oil are issued protective coveralls and gloves, he said.

To Riki Ott, a marine toxicologist who studied the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill off Alaska, it’s “deja vu.”

“What we saw with Exxon Valdez was a parallel track — sick animals and sick people. Harbor seals were looking like they were drunk and dying … and autopsies showed brain lesions.…What are we exposing these poor fishermen to?” Ott said.

Some fishermen suspect that health problems are going unreported because, with so much of the gulf closed to commercial fishing, unemployed shrimpers and oystermen are grateful for the cleanup jobs.

The fishermen report severe headaches, dizziness, nausea and difficulty breathing. Concerned by the reports, Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-La.) wrote to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius asking the agency’s help providing medical treatment, especially in Plaquemines Parish, a southern region where many fishermen live.

Melancon said he expected BP to fund the clinics, but his spokeswoman said Tuesday the company had not responded to last week’s request for financial assistance.

nicole.santacruz@latimes.com

julie.cart@latimes.com

Santa Cruz reported from Venice and Cart from Los Angeles.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-oil-workers-sick-20100526,0,4604887.story

LA Times, May 26, 2010

***

Live video: BP oil leak from sea floor

Live video: BP oil leak from sea floor

Live video: BP oil leak from sea floor

My Note –

Several places including a number of news sources have live feed video of the oil spewing into the Gulf of Mexico – however, please remember – there were initially three leaking pipe spots according to BP – one of the videos I was watching on CNN a little while ago showed four places along one single length of pipe in the live feed video – and it was not from the top of the blowout preventer nor was it from the original video clip released by BP that was on its side – so how much are each of them pouring out and how many are there really? Most of the videos I’ve seen show only one or one some of the time or something – but don’t seem to move from one to another to show all of them.

Only by identifying differences in the pipes and the relationships between the spewing oil and other elements in the video is it noticeable.

The 70,000 barrels a day spewing out of the one single leak in the first video clip is probably closer to right than not – even if it may be on the low side in comparisons made about the surface area covered, plumes undersea and quantities estimated from satellite radar imagery – which have placed  the volume higher than that. Regardless – that figure would be for one out of how many are leaking every single day. The others are pushing out oil and methane – but predominantly oil against the tremendous pressures of that level in the ocean and still gushing out with powerful thrusts.

That says a whole lot about the quantities and it would have to be times three leaks at least and maybe more than that because that one length of pipe shown as I said on CNN tonight from the live video feed of the oil leak showed a line of pipe with four places gushing out from holes every little bit in its length. The one pipe shown in the originally released video was in conflicting reports – both from information given by BP – one said 22″ diameter pipe and the other said 21″ diameter pipe. Either way – that is a massive plate diameter that is hard to recognize from these photo video clips and live video feeds.

– cricketdiane

***

P.S. – the 70,000 barrels per day times three (or more) leaks times 42 gallons per barrel times 37 days. That is the most realistic conservative estimate that has been reasonably made of the volumes coming out of these oil gushing pipe in the Gulf of Mexico deepwater horizon spill.

My little calculator that is handy doesn’t even have enough spaces for that but my guess is fairly simple – a spill of that magnitude is necessarily handled with a more massive and expedient campaign than one that is isolated and a “small event” as David Gergen and others were led to believe it was.

(my note, cd)

***

(from AP – May 25, 2010)

LIVE VIDEO

Live video of the leak has been available online for the past few days. Rep. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., said he learned that it would be shut off while BP attempts the top kill. But BP said late Tuesday that it has agreed at the request of the Obama administration to show video of the top kill.

Recently, the video has shown the underwater plume getting significantly darker. A top oil engineering expert says that suggests heavier, more-polluting oil is spewing out. The color of the oil gushing from the main pipe has changed in color from medium gray to black. Two scientists noticed the change, which oil company BP downplayed as a natural fluctuation that is not likely permanent.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5i-yfHJzPLDeBIhG5JDEF6VbaPR8QD9FU74AG0

***

(and from the same AP story – )

HOW MUCH?

BP says it siphoned more oil with a mile-long tube after two days of falling totals from a leaking seafloor well in the Gulf of Mexico. BP PLC spokesman John Curry told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the tube collected some 256,200 gallons of oil on Monday. The collections were further evidence that a previous estimate — that the entire spill was 210,000 gallons a day — was too low.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5i-yfHJzPLDeBIhG5JDEF6VbaPR8QD9FU74AG0

$7 Billion dollars annually of oil coming out of the Gulf of Mexico – from CNN story on AC360) New England states get 50% of those funds coming out of their oil fields – the Gulf states get less than 1% of those oil funds from the oil being harvested from their lands and offshore areas (paraphrased) – I know. I’m glad they finally got that figured out and realized what that means. It is a part of what has kept the Southern states along our coast in productive poverty enslaved to the oil industries even as those were abusing them, enslaving them, keeping them in poverty and destroying them. It is a plague that has blighted these economies long enough.

from the May 25, 2010 CNN show – comments were made by executive director of port authority – Port Fouchon, Louisiana – I didn’t get the rest, will look it up and put it here, my note – cricketdiane)

***

Transocean insurer sues to block BP oil spill claim

‎13 hours ago‎ – Reuters

Transocean: Dividend Won’t Affect Spill’s Legal Obligations

‎11 hours ago‎ – Wall Street Journal

Senators demand Transocean investigation

Seattle Post Intelligencer – ‎1 hour ago‎
Eighteen senators have asked the Department of Justice to investigate the operator of the Deepwater Horizon drill rig after the company announced it would dole out $1 billion to shareholders as oil still seeps into the Gulf of Mexico.

New pics of oil rig explosion

Tasmania Mercury – ‎1 hour ago‎
An image released to National Geographic of the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. AMAZING images have been released from the chaotic first 36 hours following an oil rig explosion. On April 20, 2010, a mayday call from the Deepwater Horizon

Signs of trouble evident hour before oil rig explosion

CNN – ‎2 hours ago‎
By the CNN Wire Staff Witnessess reported liquid spurting from the well in the hour before the Deepwater Horizon explosion on April 20. (CNN) — Oil company BP had three indications of trouble aboard the doomed drill rig Deepwater Horizon in the hour

BP’s internal investigation of oil spill: Several Â’warning signs’ were ignored

Washington Post – Steven Mufson – ‎2 hours ago‎
Cleanup and containment efforts continue at the Gulf of Mexico site of the oil spill following the Deepwater Horizon explosion. By Steven Mufson BP’s internal investigation of the Gulf Coast oil spill points to a series of equipment failures,
***

UPDATE ON GULF OF MEXICO OIL SPILL RESPONSE

Your Industry News (press release) – ‎5 minutes ago‎
BP today provided an update on developments in the response to the MC252 oil well incident in the Gulf of Mexico. Subsea efforts continue to focus on

Area inventors try to solve Gulf oil leak

Staunton News Leader – Rebecca Martinez – ‎16 minutes ago‎
The oil spill is a big potential economic and environmental disaster.” More than a month after the BP energy corporation’s pipeline in the Gulf of Mexico

BP had a key role in the Exxon Valdez disaster

Sify – ‎33 minutes ago‎
It was BP PLC, the same firm now fighting to plug the Gulf leak. BP owned a controlling interest in the Alaska oil industry consortium that was required to
***

BP received the third-largest criminal penalty, of $50 million, for an environmental offense in U.S. history for a Texas City refinery fire in 2005. BP subsidiaries remain under federal probation for prior offenses in Texas and Alaska.

http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/N25143995.htm

(also from this story – )

Any gross negligence ruling against BP or others could depend on whether the companies knew they were taking undue risks in the Gulf, lawyers said. “If a driller like BP knew or should have known about a condition that could lead to a disaster, it might face gross negligence,” said a lawyer and insurance underwriter who does business with BP and asked not to be named.

BP’s stock price has plunged by around 30 percent since deadly explosions rocked the Transocean Deepwater Horizon rig on April 20, setting off an oil leak that may become the biggest environmental disaster in U.S. history. An EPA legal document leaked online and viewed by Reuters shows the agency evaluated applying per barrel civil fines on BP for a 5,000-barrel oil spill in Alaska’s Prudhoe Bay in 2006. The EPA and U.S. attorneys declined to confirm or deny the contents of the document, which was found on a whistleblower website called peer.org.

If BP’s estimated spill rate of 5,000 barrels per day is accurate, responsible parties could face civil fines between $5.5 million and $21.5 million per day, depending on levels of negligence. BP’s net profits in the first quarter of 2010 were around $6.7 million per day. Other companies may share responsibility and face a portion of the civil fines, lawyers said.

(etc.)

http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/N25143995.htm

***

(from)

http://www.alaskastock.com/alaska-oil-pictures.asp

Search for these popular Alaska oil photos
Wildlife & Alaska Oil
Valdez Alaska Photos
Prudhoe Bay Photos
Alaska Pipeline Photos

Alaska has many resources and industry that provide revenue for the state, but most significant and sometimes controversial is oil. Never more than now, Alaska finds itself part of some of the most controversial discussions on oil drilling, the U.S. dependence on oil, global warming, and the economic recession. As the leading stock photo agency, Alaska Stock supplies the largest in-state collection of pictures of oil drilling in Alaska.

Oil rig at Prudhoe Bay, Alaska
Oil rig & flow lines at Prudhoe Bay

The ANWR, which was signed into law in 1973 by president Richard Nixon, has remained controversial ever since then.

Caribou in ANWR
Caribou in ANWR

Many believe that opening oil fields in Alaska would decrease U.S. dependency on petroleum imports from the Middle East and Latin America, boost the revenue of American oil companies, would create many American jobs, would lower the price of oil for American oil consumers, would increase federal, state, and local tax revenues, and lower our trade deficit.

Alaska’s Northern Slope may hold large quantities of oil, but it is impossible to say for sure because exploration is banned by the ANWR. There may also be large quantities of petroleum reserves in other parts of Alaska. Guesses as to the extent of the richness of the oil reserves in Alaska are varied. According to three government studies since 1980, anywhere from 1.69 to 14.77 billion barrels of recoverable oil may be located at the protected ANWR.
Atigun Gorge, ANWR
Atigun Gorge, ANWR

However, others argue that the amount of extractable oil in Alaska’s oil fields is only 5% or less of what the nation consumes and ANWR drilling is a short sighted, temporary fix to a much bigger problem facing the U.S. and the world….depedence on a non-renewable resource that is primarily supplied by foreign states and contributes to the ever-growing problem of global warming. In a report issued by the Energy Information Administration, or EIA, it’s stated that if Congress gave the go-ahead to pump oil from Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the crude could begin flowing by 2013 and reach a peak of 876,000 barrels a day by 2025. But even at peak production, the EIA analysis said, the United States would still have to import two-thirds of its oil, as opposed to an expected 70 percent if the refuge’s oil remained off the market.

The Gwich’in Indians who live in the ANWR also oppose oil production in their habitat because they are worried that it would destroy their traditional life style and might kill the caribou which they depend on for food and tools.

With the 2008 Presidential election, Alaska was thrust into the limelight with Senator McCain choosing Alaska’s Governor Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential running mate. During the Republican Party’s National Convention, the chant “drill, baby, drill” became the crowd’s mantra and Governor Palin promised to put Alaska on the front lines of reducing dependency on foreign oil by pushing to open up ANWR as well as move forward on a proposed natural gas pipeline.

There are seven producing oil fields on the Kenai Peninsula which produce 30,000 barrels of oil per day. There are 17 gas fields which currently produce more than 485 million cubic feet of gas per day. Offshore fields in Cook Inlet are tapped by 15 production platforms. All oil from Cook Inlet is refined at a Nikiski refinery producing gasoline, propane, butane, jet fuel, heating fuel and asphalt for Alaska markets. A chemical plant in Nikiski uses Cook Inlet natural gas as a feedstock to manufacture more than 5,000 tons of fertilizer per day. The plant is the largest fertilizer complex on the West Coast and is a major supplier to the agriculture industry in the Western United States. A gas liquefaction plant at Nikiski, the only one of its type in North America, supplies 1.3 million barrels of liquefied natural gas to Japan each month.

Dril rig in Cook Inlet

http://www.alaskastock.com/alaska-oil-pictures.asp

In our most recent past, we have seen prices rise upwards towards the $5.00/gallon mark which has seriously hurt the American economy.

***

What would a conservative environmentalist agenda look like?

By Christopher BeamPosted Monday, Nov. 17, 2008, at 7:14 PM ET

Save money—and the planet. This one is easy. Fiscal responsibility is a time-honored GOP ideal (emphasis on ideal, as opposed to reality). And there are ancillary benefits: National-security hawks want to ease our dependence on foreign oil from Saudi Arabia. Less demand for oil will also make the price of gasoline fall, cheering commuters. Environmentalists know that less consumption means less emission. John McCain was the first Republican presidential candidate to tie these threads together, arguing that when it comes to energy consumption, less is more. But the GOP can take it a step further: Encourage Americans to consume energy more efficiently—drive fuel-efficient cars, turn off lights, and, yes, inflate their tires. It’s not wimpy liberal hooey; it’s patriotic.

Don’t cap, don’t trade—tax. No joke. John McCain advocated a cap-and-trade system on the campaign trail—even if he didn’t fully understand it. But most Republican aren’t likely to embrace it any time soon. Instead, Frum proposes taxing energy and using all the revenue to eliminate other taxes. Republicans might retch at the idea of a gas tax, but not if it means killing the corporate and capital gains taxes. Plus, once Republicans see the horror show that is cap and trade under Obama, says Frum, they’ll come around. Another enviro-friendly Frum proposal: Build more toll roads. That way, there’s less incentive to drive and more money to stimulate business.

Don’t feed food. Agricultural subsidies are repulsive to free-market conservatives because they distort the price of food and represent excessive government intervention. They are anathema to environmentalists, too, because they drive up the use of harmful fertilizer. Subsidies allow domestic producers to sell their goods cheaply, but those goods are often produced on low-quality land, which requires more fertilizer, which turns into runoff and pollutes rivers.

Kill energy subsidies. Most environmentalists don’t care about the economic inefficiencies caused by subsidies for wind energy. To them, it’s worth the trade-off. But they might oppose subsidies for other, less environmentally friendly energy sources. Ethanol has proven to be less benign than originally thought. Nuclear energy still concerns many Americans, even though many politicians tout its safety. And many environmentalists think clean coal is a myth. Economic conservatives and greenies can agree that the government shouldn’t be spending this money—either because it costs taxpayers money or because it costs them their health. Sure, opposing ethanol subsidies is politically risky. But so is alienating everyone who dislikes pandering.

Go fish, with caution. Nothing sets GOP blood a-boil like the unregulated exploitation of coastal fisheries! But, seriously, there is overlap between libertarian Republicans who support imposing property rights rules on the fishing industry and environmentalists who want to limit the number of fish you can haul in a day—a sort of cap and trade for seafood. Right now, the industry suffers from a tragedy of the commons; no one owns the oceans, so no one has incentive to preserve their fisheries. Both conservatives and environmentalists want to change that.

Hike the hikers. Republicans can make the case that because of the low entry fees, national parks suffer from overuse. If we raised the fees—or, in more GOP-appropriate language, stop subsidizing granola-munching backpackers—it would reduce the erosion and impact on the supposedly preserved areas. Some environmentalists might argue that hurts the park-going American public. But, say conservatives, what about the non-park-going public that is paying for the park-going public to destroy wildlife? Discuss

http://www.slate.com/id/2204859

***

My Note –

The Gulf of Mexico right now is what a conservative Republican environmental agenda looks like.

– cricketdiane

***

Page last updated at 05:14 GMT, Wednesday, 17 September 2008 06:14 UK

House backs fresh US oil drilling

The US House of Representatives has approved legislation which would lift a 27-year-old moratorium on drilling for oil in US coastal waters.

The House voted 236 to 189 in favour of the extensive energy package, which was drawn up by the Democrats, who had previously opposed coastal drilling.

Republicans denounced the bill as a political ruse.

President George W Bush lifted an executive ban on drilling for oil in most US coastal waters in July, urging lawmakers to follow suit in order to reduce US dependence on oil imports.

The move came as high oil prices pushed US petrol prices above $4 per gallon (£0.59, or 0.79 euro, a litre).

Political ruse?

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the bill marked “a new direction in energy policy” because of its emphasis on alternative energy.

Until recently, Democratic leaders had opposed ending the drilling ban, pointing out that oil companies already have 68m acres under government leases they can drill.

The Senate will consider a similar bill later this week.

Republican John McCain is in favour of offshore oil drilling, whereas his Democratic rival, Barack Obama, opposes it.

The federal bans were enacted in part to protect tourism and lessen the chance of oil spills washing on to beaches.

(etc.)

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7620282.stm

***

Week of 8.1.08

Big Oil, Big Influence

By LINDSAY RENICK MAYER

Lindsay Renick Mayer is the money-in-politics reporter for the Center for Responsive Politics. The nonpartisan Washington-based organization researches money’s influence on politics and provided data for this story from its website, OpenSecrets.org.

During his first month in office, President George W. Bush appointed Vice President Dick Cheney to head a task force charged with developing the country’s energy policy. The group, which conducted its meetings in secret, relied on the recommendations of Big Oil behemoths Exxon Mobil, Conoco, Shell Oil, BP America and Chevron. It would be the first of many moves to come during the Bush administration that would position oil and gas companies well ahead of other energy interests with billions of dollars in subsidies and tax cuts—payback for an industry with strong ties to the administration and plenty of money to contribute to congressional and presidential campaigns.

During the time that Bush and Cheney, both of whom are former oil executives, have been in the White House, the oil and gas industry has spent $393.2 million on lobbying the federal government. This places the industry among the top nine in lobbying expenditures. The industry has also contributed a substantial $82.1 million to federal candidates, parties and political action committees, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. 80 percent of the industry’s contributions have gone to Republicans.

Vice President Dick Cheney Buying Pro-Industry Policy

This support has not gone unrewarded. In 2005, Bush, who has received more from the oil and gas industry than any other politician, signed an energy bill from the Republican-controlled Congress that gave $14.5 billion in tax breaks for oil, gas, nuclear power and coal companies. The Energy Policy Act of 2005, which was based on recommendations by Cheney’s energy task force, also rolled back regulations the oil industry considered burdensome, including exemptions from some clean water laws. All of this transpired only one year after Congress passed a bill that included a tax cut for domestic manufacturing that was expected to save energy companies at least $3.6 billion over a decade.

“Political action committees, lobbyists and executives do not give money to politicians or parties out of an altruistic support of the principles of democracy,” says Tyson Slocum, director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program. “They are savvy investors expecting a return on their investments. Politicians routinely deliver on campaign contributions that are provided to them… [by] giving goodies to the industry.” And the size of those contributions matters.

In comparison, environmental groups and alternative energy production and supply companies, which didn’t see similar benefits come out of the Republican Congress’s legislation, have made paltry contributions. Environmental groups, such as the Sierra Club, League of Conservation Voters and the Nature Conservancy, which often push for policy that is punitive to Big Oil, have given nearly 11 times less than the oil industry since 2001. The disparity is not a strategic difference, but the financial reality for these smaller competing interests. Exxon Mobil, for example, reported the largest annual profit on record for a U.S. corporation in 2006, bringing in $39.5 billion. Comparatively, the nonprofit Sierra Club Foundation—which funds organizations in addition to the Sierra Club—reported income in 2006 of $29 million.

With members of Congress paying special attention to Big Oil, the policy that elected representatives have developed does not reflect the interest of the public, which wants “affordable, reliable, clean sources of energy,” Slocum says. A 2006 survey by the Pew Research Center found a majority of Americans across the political spectrum want an energy policy that emphasizes renewable and alternative sources of energy.

“Energy companies have a right to have a say in energy policy. Do they have a right to dictate energy policy, to be the only people at the table? Absolutely not. That was the main problem with the Cheney task force—[the industry] was the only one at the table,” says Slocum.

To keep its prominent seat, the industry spends big sums of money on hiring the top lobbyists in Washington to push its agenda on a variety of issues, not just related to energy but on issues ranging from education to real estate. After a few years of declining lobbying expenditures, the industry spent $63.3 million in 2005, most of which was probably related to the energy bill. (Lobbying reports don’t require lobbyists to itemize their spending related to specific bills or amendments). In 2007, with a new energy bill in the pipeline, the industry’s lobbying expenditures are on track to exceed last year’s total of $73 million. Big Oil has spent seven times more than environmental groups on lobbying since President Bush took office.

Marchant Wentworth, a lobbyist for the environmental advocacy group the Union of Concerned Scientists, says money buys access. “I’ve been working in the public interest environmental business for 30 years and 90 percent of the time I’m talking to staff,” Wentworth said. “The oil and gas industry talks to the members themselves. That is a huge difference. Access is an important thing.”

The Biggest Spenders and Takers

“With a new energy bill in the pipeline, the industry’s lobbying expenditures are on track to exceed last year’s total of $73 million.”

The energy companies that spend the most on lobbying the federal government also tend to be those that give the most to politicians for their campaigns. Since 2001, Exxon Mobil, Marathon Oil, Shell Oil, Chevron and BP America—many of which provided guidance to Cheney’s task force—have spent the most among energy companies on lobbying. Exxon Mobil and Chevron, in addition to El Paso Corp and Koch Industries, have been among the most generous campaign contributors within the industry during Bush’s time in office. The American Petroleum Institute, which represents the oil industry in Washington, declined to comment for this story, and a spokesman from the national trade group the Independent Petroleum Association of America was unavailable for comment.

Lawmakers, who live in areas that depend on oil production for their economy, are likely to be among the largest recipients of contributions from the oil and gas industry—and to vote in favor of legislation that helps it. The top three members of Congress to receive money from Big Oil during the Bush administration are all Republicans and are, not surprisingly, all from oil-rich Texas. The big names include Sens. John Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison, both of whom have supported subsidies for gas and oil exploration and drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Also is Rep. Joe Barton, who sponsored the 2005 energy bill and was chair of the House Energy & Commerce Committee at the time. Fellow Texan Tom DeLay, who was the House Majority Leader in 2005 and was instrumental in pushing the energy bill through, also ranks among the top to receive money from the industry during Bush’s two terms. Of the 50 members of Congress who have received the most contributions from oil and gas companies since 2001, only six are Democrats.

Campaign contributions don’t always get the oil industry desired results. Many of the oil industry chieftains, who were pushing to open ANWR for exploration, were disappointed when the 2005 energy bill came out of conference committee without that provision. Nor, do campaign contributions always get the industry’s favorite candidates elected. Four of five of Big Oil’s most favored candidates—all Republicans—lost their re-election races in 2006, despite hefty campaign contributions from oil and gas employees and PACs that cycle. The losers included Sens. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, Conrad Burns of Montana, George Allen of Virginia and James Talent of Missouri.

Battles on the Horizon

With Democrats now in control of Congress, the oil and gas industry is finding that it’s getting less for its money on Capitol Hill. Other industries with competing interests and far less cash to spread around, such as environmental groups and alternative energy producers, are now finding more support for their legislative goals. For example, the Clean Energy Act of 2007 seeks to repeal the 2004 and 2005 tax breaks to Big Oil and re-direct the money to renewable energy efforts.

Because of the change in power, the oil industry faces the possibility of stricter oversight and fewer goodies from Congress. The industry “definitely has to be worried that there will be anti-oil legislation of all types, and also possibly regulations, depending on who takes over the White House,” says David Victor, a law professor at Stanford University and a senior fellow on the Council for Foreign Relations. Victor was part of the council’s task force on energy security.

“I think [the new leadership] generally puts the issue on the agenda for legislative action. It puts it higher on the agenda. But it’s not clear Congress will actually be able to do very much in terms of getting the votes for legislation, because energy policy in reality is very controversial and often very expensive,” Victor said. “That’s something that both parties have a difficult time dealing with.”

So far Congress has been slow to push through comprehensive energy legislation, in part because issues related to renewable energy standards and fuel efficiency standards differ by region, rather than political party, which means not all democrats are on board, says Frank O’Donnell, president of the environmental advocacy group Clean Air Watch. “Some of the southern-based coal burning power companies have killed or delayed efforts to set a renewable energy requirement for electric companies. Michigan Reps. and others influenced by the car industry have also managed to put off any kind of tougher requirements for fuel economy.” O’Donnell says. “John Dingell is a democrat but doesn’t see eye to eye with [Speaker of the House] Nancy Pelosi in some of these issues and so far you’ve seen somewhat of a stalemate.”

Dingell has consistently defended the auto industry, which is fighting against stricter fuel economy standards. These standards have not been changed since the 1980s. The auto industry is a major player in Dingell’s home state of Michigan, which relies heavily on the industry for jobs and is the corporate home of General Motors, Ford and the domestic division of DaimlerChrysler. Among all members of Congress, Dingell has received the second most in contributions from the auto industry at $869,200, just behind Republican Spencer Abraham, a former Michigan senator. The industry has been one of Dingell’s largest contributors during his career—second only to electric utilities.

During former President Bill Clinton’s administration, Congressional Democrats who supported more rigid standards missed a chance to pass such legislation, but they had to grapple with a Republican-controlled Congress largely unsympathetic to the idea. Congress just adjourned for the Thanksgiving break without voting on an energy bill that would, among other things, boost the fuel efficiency of the nation’s vehicles. Speaker Pelosi had hoped but failed to bring the measure to a vote, largely because negotiations stalled over the fuel economy standards.

“With Democrats now in control of Congress, the oil and gas industry is finding that it’s getting less for its money on Capitol Hill.”

The Changing Climate for Energy Policy

As Congress wrestles with the comprehensive energy legislation, the oil and gas industry is not only fighting off repeals of its tax breaks, but is pushing again for increased domestic production of energy, specifically permission to drill in certain coastal areas that have been off limits. The companies are also trying to prevent democrats from prosecuting them for jacking up prices excessively and they publicly oppose the bill’s mandated use of alternative fuels. The industry joined the fight for coal-to-liquid fuel, in which oil companies have investments, but the controversial provision to encourage creating diesel fuel from domestic coal has already been eliminated from both the house and senate’s versions of the bill. The legislation is also meant to correct an error by the interior department during former President Bill Clinton’s time in office that allowed many companies to drill in deep waters without paying royalties. [for more on the royalty issue, see NOW reports “The Royalty Treatment” and “Crude Awakening”]

The best Big Oil can do right now is slow down the legislation, Wentworth of the Union of Concerned Scientists says. “The [legislation] is being held up because the oil and gas industry is concerned about closing loopholes for offshore drilling,” he says. “They’re fighting this tooth and nail. This is slowing down the clean energy solutions that the public wants.”

Environmentalists, who had very little influence in Congress when Republicans were in control, are now seeing the lawmakers seriously consider their positions. This includes environmentalists’ support of fuel efficiency standards, a mandate for electric utility companies to produce 15 percent of electricity from renewable sources and their opposition to coal-to-liquid fuel development. Nowhere is this change in tides more evident than in the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, which is heavily involved in energy legislation. California Sen. Barbara Boxer, considered one of the environment’s biggest champions, has chaired the committee since her party assumed control of the Senate in the 2006 election. Boxer replaced Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe, a Republican who has received $572,000 from the oil and gas industry since President Bush took office—more than all but three other members of Congress. Since 2001, Boxer has received less than $13,000 from the industry and nearly 69 times more from environmental policy groups than Inhofe.

“The oil and gas industry, like almost every other industry, will shift some donations from Republicans to Democrats,” says Eric Smith, a political scientist who researches environmental policy at the University of California-Santa Barbara. “It’s clear that the industry strongly prefers to have Republicans in power, but industries generally focus on short-term advantages. In the short term—now and presumably after the 2008 elections—Democrats hold congressional majorities. So to win the short-term battles, the industry must try to persuade Democrats in Congress to go easy on them.”

Big Oil, which has always contributed heavily to Republicans, isn’t likely to defensively switch its contributions to favor Democrats. But so far this year, 27 percent of the industry’s contributions have gone to Democrats, up from 18 percent in the 2006 election cycle, when Republicans were still in power.

The Democratic Congress has made clean energy legislation a priority because of rising gas prices and concerns about the nation’s dependence on foreign oil sources, in addition to a scientific consensus that human activity is the root cause of today’s global warming. Many Republicans, too, are on board and looking for solutions. “The single most important thing that’s happened in the last five years is the price of oil has shot up,” Stanford’s David Victor says. “That run-up has changed the politics and incentives for people to take an interest in conservation, and that’s completely bipartisan. There are people in the left wing and the right wing that say we need to do something about this problem.”

*Total includes all contributions greater than $200. The Federal Election Commission does not require recipients to itemize smaller donations.

E-mail this page to a friend

http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/347/oil-politics.html

***

Republicans escalate criticism of oil spill response

By Shailagh Murray

Tuesday, May 25, 2010; 6:20 PM

Republicans are seeking to erode voter confidence in Obama’s leadership by portraying him as lackadaisical in his response — similar to the crippling effect of Hurricane Katrina for President George W. Bush. GOP lawmakers also are making a case that Obama is too cozy with the oil industry to apply maximum pressure on BP, a theory advanced by former Alaska governor Sarah Palin (R) on “Fox News Sunday.”

“I don’t know why the question isn’t asked by the mainstream media and others if there’s any connection with the contributions made to President Obama and his administration and the support by the oil companies to the administration,” Palin said.

The oil spill was the first question posed to Obama during a Tuesday meeting with Republican senators at the Capitol. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) queried the president about methods for preventing oil from washing ashore, contaminating fragile wetlands and ruining Gulf Coast beaches.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/25/AR2010052504463.html?hpid=topnews

***

FLOOR STATEMENT: Energy Crisis (7-29-2008)

Jul 29, 2008 – On the Republican side, their idea is to drill more oil, keep drilling, keep finding more oil. Sadly, they have ignored the reality.
durbin.senate.gov/showRelease.cfm?releaseId=301569

***

Republicans have seized on public anger over $4 per gallon gasoline and are calling for domestic oil production in federal lands and offshore areas now closed to exploration and drilling. Since polls show the public agrees with them, Republicans believe “drilling”–the one-word capsulation of the issue–is their strongest political talking point in 2008. Indeed, it may be their only good domestic issue.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/015/225hregm.asp

(and over $5.00 a gallon for diesel fuel at the same time – apparently driven by “expert” at Goldman Sachs and a number of oil industry representatives, including all kinds from oil wildcatters from the old days to technical oil industry experts and financial analysts explaining why resources were nearly gone and going to be gone before expected, etc. – turned out it was a profit taking move for speculators including Goldman Sachs to drive the barrel price up and sell off what they had at a much higher price to make money. In the meantime, many small businesses, independent owner-operators driving big rig trucks and a multitude of other businesses were put out of business directly because of the higher fuel costs, the retail prices of goods went up to accommodate it and some people couldn’t afford to go to their jobs to sustain their own employment among the working class poor.

All that damage just for the big traders and speculators in Wall Street to make some quick money – and it turned out that the “experts” were either lying, misguided, intentionally misleading or simply so far out in left field “wrong” that they shouldn’t be considered experts of anything. But, every 15 minutes – the retail prices were changed to reflect an increasing speculative futures barrel price despite it being months away from actual delivery and then when the “bubble” they artificially created did burst – the prices at the pump remained high and were days, weeks and months to even begin reflecting those adjustments which further crippled the economy. And, the whole thing was intentionally constructed and provided intentional propaganda and pr through every media outlet to make it seem like oil was so depleted as to be unavailable by 2011 or 2012 and surely increasingly depleted by the day and by the hour, such that it might not even last that long in their estimations. – cricketdiane)

***

Oil, gas exploration is a focus for forest service
Written by Ted Lutz
Friday, 29 February 2008

Timber harvests over the past year are well below average, while many companies with subsurface mineral rights in the forests are drilling oil and gas wells virtually as fast as they can obtain permits.

The sharp rise in the price of a barrel of crude oil is spawning the increase in wells in one of Pennsylvania long-time “oil patches” in the forest.

When the national forest was created in the 1920s, the acreage acquired by the federal government did not include subsurface mineral rights.

For years, companies such as Quaker State and Pennzoil drilled and pumped oil from wells on leases within the national forest. These two large companies have moved operations elsewhere, but several smaller firms have taken over the oil leases and are flourishing.

The oil and gas industry is considered one of the largest employers in the Kane area. In addition to drilling for oil and gas, the lease-holding companies contract with many other firms to build roads and provide other services.

Under terms of their leases, the oil companies reportedly have the authority to construct access roads to wells drilled in the forest.

Because of the increase in drilling activity, the Forest Service appears to be directing more and more attention to details involving wells, access roads and the use of equipment on its own roads in the 513,000-acre forest.

Earlier this month, a rift developed between the Forest Service and the Duhring Resource Company of Sheffield over the use of forest roads.

The Forest Service claims the company failed to pay for “commercial” road permits to use four forest roads on both sides of Route 948 near Cherry Run in Sheffield Township, Warren County.

“As a result of failure to pay a commercial road use permit for the commercial use of these roads on national forest system lands, all commercial use of these roads by Duhring Resource Company employees and their associated contractors must cease until the commercial road use permit is paid in full,” Bradford District Ranger Anthony Scardina said in a Feb. 8 letter to Duhring.

That same day Forest Service law enforcement personnel reportedly showed up at well sites to advise certain workers to cease their activities.

“They showed up with guns and badges and kicked us off our property,” Steven Tachoir, Duhring Resource president, said.

According to Arthur Stewart, a Warren attorney who is vice president of Duhring, the dispute between the Forest Service and Duhring involves the amount of the payment for the permit.

Stewart claims his company should only pay about $10,000 for the permit. He said the Forest Service used “a wrong calculation” in billing the company $14,092.70 for the permit.

Duhring has since paid the full permit fee “under protest” and has returned to its well sites to avoid what the company claims would be a “financial loss from delayed oil and gas sales.”

Duhring operates more than 100 wells within the national forest, Stewart said.

The construction of roads to access oil and well locations also is drawing the attention of the Allegheny Defense Project (ADP), which in the past has challenged certain logging operations in the forest.

The ADP claims a Forest Service plan to expand eight stone pits within the forest is “almost exclusively for the oil and gas industry.”

“It becomes clear that the proposal is overwhelmingly for private road development to facilitate oil and gas drilling,” Megan Rulli, ADP outreach coordinator, said.

“Our public land is not a disposable resource for private oil and gas operations,” said Bill Belitskus, president of the ADP board. Belitskus, who resides near Lantz Corners, said the “forest plan” directs the Forest Service to “ensure the protection of surface resources from the impacts of oil and gas drilling.”

The Kane-based Allegheny Forest Alliance (AFA), which supports increased timber sales in the national forest, last year supported the oil and gas industry when it challenged the new “forest plan.”

Jack Hedlund of Kane, the executive director of the AFA, said last year that the oil and gas industry “stands to lose the most” under the new forest plan. He said the AFA is concerned because the oil and gas industry is “part of our culture” and provides “jobs and income” for the Kane area.

In its challenge, the AFA said the plans fails to recognize the holders of mineral rights by “expanding the authority of new standards and guidelines” for oil and gas drilling in the ANF without giving the “subsurface” owners an “opportunity to comment.”

http://www.kanerepublican.com/content/view/40214

***

Republican Presidential Candidates Tout Energy Independence

By Amy Quinton on Wednesday, August 29, 2007.

And energy independence for Republicans – like former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney – means drilling for more oil in the U-S, and increasing the number of nuclear plants.
(soundbite Romney) there are a whole series of sources of power that we can get, one is drilling for oil here in Anwar and the outer continental shelf, but there are cleaner sources like nuclear power which we ought to be doing in a more aggressive way and learning how to reprocess nuclear fuel like the French are doing and we can take to a second level.

http://www.nhpr.org/node/13684

***

Amid Scrutiny After Spill, Oil Lobby Weighs Response

May 26, 2010

Oil industry lobbyists are working hard to soften the blow they know will be coming amid hearings in Congress and as oil continues to spill into the Gulf of Mexico.

Menendez proposed a bill to lift the $75 million cap on corporate liability for economic damages from oil spills. But Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) was ready, and blocked the bill — at least for now.

The drive for legislation and the maneuver to block it are likely to play out many more times this summer — and fall — as the oil industry braces for an onslaught of legislation. Democrats want to pass a bill that will raise the liability limit to $10 billion.

Lobbying Contributions

“The oil industry, to read the newspaper, you would think is the most powerful lobbying group in the Congress,” said lobbyist J. Bennett Johnston, a former Democratic senator from Louisiana. “And the fact of the matter is, it is so far down the list you almost can’t find it.”

It’s true that oil doesn’t have as many powerful allies as it used to — like Senate Majority Leader Lyndon Johnson in the 1950s or Vice President Dick Cheney or Bennett Johnston himself, who in the 1980s and ’90s chaired both of the Senate panels overseeing the oil industry.

But the industry has made about $13 million in campaign contributions for the upcoming midterm elections. Last year, it spent $39 million on lobbying, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

( . . . )

For example, the drilling companies that work in shallow water are trying to distance themselves from the deep-water operations where the blowout occurred.

More specifically, they want to be exempted from the Obama administration’s moratorium on new drilling permits. They have hired lobbyist Robert Livingston, a former Republican congressman from Louisiana.

Livingston argues that the shallow drillers will be unfairly hurt by the moratorium because they don’t work a well for months and months the way the deep-water rigs do.

(etc. – lots more good stuff here and 9 am radio show – tomorrow)

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=127122334

***

Headlines for December 07, 2007

http://www.democracynow.org/2007/12/7/headlines

Iraq’s Oil Ministry Prepares to Sign Oil Contracts

UPI is reporting Iraq’s Oil Ministry is preparing to sign deals for the country’s largest oil fields even though the Iraqi government has failed to pass an Iraq oil law. BP, Shell, ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips and other oil companies are all attempting to win contracts in Iraq. Executives from BP and Shell are expected to be meeting soon with Iraq’s Oil Minister. Under Iraqi law, the Oil Ministry can sign service contract deals on its own. But any production-sharing contracts would need parliamentary approval.

Bush Threatens To Veto Energy Bill, New Auto Fuel Efficiency Standards

President Bush is threatening to veto an energy bill that would raise auto fuel efficiency standards for the first time in 32 years. On Thursday the House approved the energy bill by a 235 to 181 vote. The bill would raise the corporate average fuel economy level for cars and light trucks to 35 miles per gallon by 2020. The legislation also revokes $21 billion in tax breaks to oil companies and will require utilities to produce 15 percent of their power from renewable sources by 2020. The bill now goes to the Senate. Republicans criticized the bill because it would increases taxes on oil companies and not boost production of oil, natural gas or coal.

Congress Drops Hate Crimes Bill

In other news from Capitol Hill, the House has dropped legislation that would have expanded federal civil rights protections to individuals targeted for hate crimes based on their gender, gender identity, sexual orientation or disability. The bill was stripped from a military spending bill after Democrats decided they didn’t have enough votes to get it passed.

CIA Admits to Destroying Tapes of Two Interrogations

The CIA has admitted it destroyed at least two tapes documenting the interrogations of two prisoners held at a secret CIA prison. The American Civil Liberties Union accused the CIA of deliberately destroying evidence that could have been used to hold CIA agents accountable for the torture of prisoners. One of the tapes is believed to have shown CIA agents waterboarding the Al Qaida operative Abu Zubaydah. C.I.A. Director Michael Hayden said the tapes were destroyed because they posed a “serious security risk.” He said that if they were to become public they would have exposed C.I.A. officials and their families to “retaliation from Al Qaeda and its sympathizers.” Human rights groups say the videotapes could have led to criminal prosecution of the CIA agents involved for torture and abuse. The CIA had previously refused to provide the recordings to members of the Sept. 11 Commission or a federal judge in the Zacarias Moussaoui case. The former general counsel for the 9/11 commission, Daniel Marcus, said the destruction of the tapes could amount to obstruction to withhold evidence being sought in a criminal or fact-finding investigation.

Today –
  • WATCH: Live Feed of the Gulf Oil Spill

    A live video feed that shows the oil gushing from the damaged well in the Gulf of Mexico is now available online. Congressman Ed Markey of Massachusetts pushed BP to make the video public.

    Full DN! coverage of the spill is here.

    Filed under News

***

December 6, 2007 — Updated 2137 GMT (0537 HKT)

House approves raising fuel economy standards

By Deirdre Walsh
CNN

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The House of Representatives passed the first major increase in fuel economy standards in more than 30 years with a 235-181 vote.

The energy bill requires automakers to raise their average fuel economy standard by 40 percent to 35 miles per gallon by 2020.

The current standard — 27.5 mpg for cars and 22.2 for trucks –was passed in 1975.

Supporters say raising these standards, known as CAFE, will result in significant fuel savings.

Although the auto industry and many Republicans support the bill’s new CAFE standards; the bill’s $21 billion in taxes complicate its prospects for passage in the Senate. The bill would repeal billions of tax subsidies, including $13 billion for the nation’s five largest oil companies.

House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio slammed the bill, saying, “You can’t tax your way to energy independence. You can’t tax your way to providing a greater supply of energy in America. And you can’t just have more government regulations on the industry and expect that we’re going to have more energy in the pipeline.”

The bill also includes a mandate that electric utility companies generate 15 percent of their energy from renewable sources of energy such as wind, biomass or solar power by 2020.

Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, argued the “renewable energy standard” leaves out some technologies like clean coal and hydrogen, and is “almost impossible to meet” by most states.

The White House has threatened to veto the bill. Earlier this week, the president’s chief economic adviser, Allan Hubbard, wrote to Pelosi, citing the renewable electricity mandate and the taxes as unacceptable.

While House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, argued the bill’s passage would be a “historic step in moving our nation toward real energy independence,” Republicans said the bill was going nowhere in the Senate.

House Republican Whip Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, told reporters the bill could be made more palatable to the White House and congressional Republicans if the Senate stripped the tax provisions and the renewable energy standard.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, said the bill would save consumers $22 billion, but said the energy bill won’t have an immediate impact on the price of gas. “It may not go down tomorrow, but the fact is we are making a plan for the future and this is consumer legislation, and as soon as we can bring those prices down we will.”

http://edition.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/06/energy.bill/

***

Voices of Warning: 2008 Recession or Depression Likely « Daily

Dec 6, 2007 – Report: OPEC president sees oil at $170 this year Marketwarch.com, ….. Meanwhile, decades of Republican economic strategy has brought us to a recession

,
nyletterpress.wordpress.com/2007/12/06/2008-recession/
***
Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil on the Beaches of Grand Isle Friday, May 21, 2010 (17 photos)

Created on May 21, 2010

Oil fouls the beaches of Grand Isle

**
Republican Environment
Taking back the environmental movement!

http://www.republicanenvironment.com/

2007 (and before)

Global Warming

How serious is climate change? Is it really happening?

Endangered Species

How concerned should we be about endangered species?

Energy and fossil fuels

Oil and coal are the largest sources of energy, but are there alternatives?

Want to learn more about
environmental issues?
Read “How the Left Stole the Environment”

While many promising advances have been made in the areas of solar and wind power, these two sources account for less than 3% of the energy needs of the United States. This means that until the technology advances significantly, we will need to use oil, coal, nuclear power, and other sources of energy to meet current demand. Also, it is important to note that solar technology may never advance far enough for it to be more than a minor source of energy.

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil in the Gulf Saturday, May 22, 2010 (21 photos)

Created on May 22, 2010

As oil threatens the brown pelicans nesting on islands in Barataria Bay, BP prepares to pump mud into the broken pipes of the Deepwater Horizon in an attempt to stop the leaks.

**

(continued from above – Republican Environmental Protection Plans)
Even though oil is necessary to meet current energy demands in the United States, liberals continue to oppose new drilling and exploration operations. One good example is ANWR (Arctic National Wildlife Reserve). This is a large area of Alaska that currently consists of vacant wild land and a few animals. The area of ANWR being considered for oil exploration is about 1.5 million acres along the northern coast of Alaska. This section represents about 8% of the total area of ANWR. Caribou, muskoxen, and birds live in this section of ANWR, but drilling operations would be unlikely to adversely affect them. Why I am so certain that arctic wildlife would not be harmed by oil drilling? The reason is simple. Populations of caribou and muskoxen living just outside of ANWR in the Prudhoe Bay region, where oil drilling has been taking place for about 30 years, have increased! I am sure the Democrats never showed you any facts and statistics about the health and numbers of wildlife in arctic areas where drilling operations are taking place. The inconvenient truth for the Democrats is that oil drilling is not harmful or disruptive to animals living in the arctic.

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Gulf Oil Spill May 18 (5 photos)

Created on May 18, 2010

Images from May 18 activity in connection with the Gulf of Mexico oil spill

(cont. – Republican Party ideas)
Many Democrats have expressed incredibly naive and short-sighted opinions about drilling for oil in a small portion of ANWR. For example, Senator Patrick Leahy (a Democrat from Vermont) strongly opposes drilling for oil anywhere in ANWR. He attempts to explain his opinions on his official website. Unfortunately, Senator Leahy’s arguments are humorously flawed. For starters, the calculations to determine the economic feasibility of extracting oil are based on a price of $22 per barrel! Senator Leahy states that there are probably at least 3.2 billion barrels of oil in the northern coastal area of ANWR. Considering that the price of oil as of March 2010 is about $80 a barrel, this means that ANWR contains over $256 billion worth of oil! To an ivory tower liberal such as Senator Leahy, I guess that $256 billion is not much money. To a simple person such as me, though, it is certainly a considerable sum!

http://www.republicanenvironment.com/energy1.html

***

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil seeping into Barataria Bay (10 photos)

Created on May 23, 2010

Oil from the BP blowout in the Gulf of Mexico seeps into a brown pelican nesting area in Barataria Bay. Thousands of pelicans, along with some terns, roseate spoonbills and herons, are nesting on a series of small mangrove and grass islands on the eastern side of the bay. Oil absorbing booms were placed around the rookeries sometime after Wednesday, but oil still managed to soak about the first six inches of the shorelines and seep into the nesting areas through gaps in the booms. May 23, 2010.

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil spill photo gallery May 24, 2010 (9 photos)

Created on May 24, 2010

Photos from Times-Picayune photographers covering various aspects of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil in Pass a Loutre (10 photos)

Created on May 19, 2010

Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser and La. Gov. Bobby Jindal tour Pass a Loutre Wednesday, May 19, 2010, where oil has washed ashore, especially on the western side of South Pass.

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil Spill Photos for May 19, 2010 (10 photos)

Created on May 19, 2010

Times-Picayune staff photographer Michael DeMocker spent a day with the oil spill yesterday. Here are some of those images.

http://photos.nola.com/4500/category/gulf_of_mexico_oil_spill/index.html

***

Updated July 14, 2009

WASHINGTON — Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who says she’ll leave office at the end of the month, is already taking on one national issue, calling the Obama administration’s plan to reduce greenhouse gases a threat to the U.S. economy.

Instead, the former Republican vice presidential nominee says: “We are ripe for economic growth and energy independence if we responsibly tap the resources that God created right underfoot on American soil. Just as important, we have more desire and ability to protect the environment than any foreign nation from which we purchase energy today.”

The climate bill passed by the House last month requires power plants, factories, refineries and electricity and natural gas distributors to reduce the emissions linked to global warming. It also calls for more power production from renewable sources such wind and solar energy, and raises energy-efficiency standards.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/07/14/palin-obamas-energy-plan-threat-economy/

(from)

http://www.republicanenvironment.com/energy1.html

In the News

http://www.republicanenvironment.com/

***

Gulf of Mexico oil spill Gallery

Oil Spill photos May 17, 2010 (5 photos)

Created on May 17, 2010

Oil spill photos May 17, 2010 from around the region

http://photos.nola.com/4500/category/gulf_of_mexico_oil_spill/index.html

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GOP’s Fred Thompson Open To Drilling In Parks for Oil

Submitted by Kurt Repanshek on September 28, 2007 – 2:14pm

During a recent stop in Florida, Republican Fred Thompson allowed that he’d support drilling for oil in Everglades National Park if major reserves were found there.

“I don’t think anybody really prefers to drill at all anywhere,” the former U.S. senator from Tennessee told the Palm Beach Post. “Nobody wants to see $100 oil, either.”

A bit later during his appearance Mr. Thompson added, “No one has told me that there is any major reserves in the Everglades. … But maybe that’s one of the things I have to learn while I’m down here.”

Fellow Republican Mitt Romney, when told of Mr. Thompson’s comments, was astounded. “In the Everglades? You’re kidding. … We’re not going to drill in the Everglades,” he told the newspaper. “There are certain places in America that are national treasures and the Everglades is one of those. It’s environmentally extraordinarily sensitive. The people of Florida would never support such a thing.”

While it is very early in the presidential campaign — too early for my liking, frankly — it’s not too early to hold the candidates accountable on environmental issues, including their positions on the National Park Service and the national park system.

Can anyone forget George W. Bush promising during the 2000 campaign that he would wipe out the Park Service’s maintenance backlog, which then was estimated to be around $5 billion? Well, today it’s upwards of $8 billion and the Bush administration has yet to come up with a viable solution for paring it down.

http://www.nationalparkstraveler.com/2007/09/gops-fred-thompson-open-drilling-parks-oil

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Jean-Michel Cousteau Added by Paula Devlin, The Times-Picayune on May 18, 2010 at 6:09 PM  Jean-Michel Cousteau talks to media after he and his expedition team were turned away by the U.S. Coast Guard after arriving at the Breton Island National Wildlife Sanctuary to document the effects of oil on marine life in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of La., Tuesday, May 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) Tags: oil spill gulf of mexico 2010 This photo is part of the following galleries: Gulf Oil Spill May 18

Jean-Michel Cousteau Added by Paula Devlin, The Times-Picayune on May 18, 2010 at 6:09 PM Jean-Michel Cousteau talks to media after he and his expedition team were turned away by the U.S. Coast Guard after arriving at the Breton Island National Wildlife Sanctuary to document the effects of oil on marine life in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of La., Tuesday, May 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) Tags: oil spill gulf of mexico 2010 This photo is part of the following galleries: Gulf Oil Spill May 18

Jean-Michel Cousteau

Added by Paula Devlin, The Times-Picayune on May 18, 2010 at 6:09 PM

Jean-Michel Cousteau talks to media after he and his expedition team were turned away by the U.S. Coast Guard after arriving at the Breton Island National Wildlife Sanctuary to document the effects of oil on marine life in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of La., Tuesday, May 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

This photo is part of the following galleries: Gulf Oil Spill May 18

http://photos.nola.com/tpphotos/2010/05/jean-michel_cousteau.html

***

My Note –

Who is running the US Coast Guard – BP? There is no reason to turn away world-renowned science teams from around throughout the international community when they have set aside their other projects to come and see the degree of decimation and what can be done to save it. That is baseless what the Coast Guard did turning them away and it is unacceptable treatment to the world’s best teams that are coming here to help us. I could kick their butts. That had to be at the behest of BP – they seem to get everything done however they want it done and they’ve kept everybody away from seeing the leaking oil under the Gulf of Mexico for 23 days and then not only was it a little clip of the video – but it took an act of Congress to get access to any of it.

Damn those people making this disastrous catastrophe exponentially worse everyday by doing things like that. And, for turning away resources that are desperately needed, insulting them and the rest of us – and mismanagement of those and the rest of the resources to deal with this massive nightmare.

– cricketdiane

***

They are letting a corporate entity and its executives and representatives that are known murderers of eleven men – and others before this – and who have poisoned and tortured our animals and every marine animal in the Gulf of Mexico sadistically and inhumanely – and they are letting those same people be the lead decision-makers who set the policies, decide the actions and determine priorities?

Who gave BP or any oil company’s executives, interests, companion industries or the oil industry generally – the authority over the entire interests and sovereignty and resources of the Gulf of Mexico and the entire Gulf Coast of the United States of America? How many more of our states, forests, public lands, protected wildlife preserves, coasts and coastal waters did the Republican Party and their administrations cede to them? or sell to them? or give to them as a gift in kind for cocaine, sex, money, women, boys and whatever else they raided and traded for them?

There is no country in the world that could’ve raped, pillaged and plundered our national treasures and every state and national treasury too for that matter than the Republican Party has done over the last thirty years. They are no more than one more enemy that turned out not to be a nation off somewhere far away – but rather right here in our homes and beds and bathrooms and living rooms and community boardrooms, churches and the Halls of Congress.

And, now – I bet their leftover cronies and remaining in-house staff members throughout every agency from the minerals management services to EPA to the Department of Energy to the Department of Interior and no telling where else are doing every petty thing possible to trip up the new administrators within these agencies from telling them they don’t know where a file is to saying they don’t know if something has already been studied or not.

my note – cricketdiane

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Going to go watch the early am news – maybe they will start the top kill . . .

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