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[pct-l] Oil

While I must state up front that I am against any oil or gas exploration
in the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, I have only
come to this conclusion after fairly exhaustive research.

This is a hot topic right now, and I encourage you all to familiarize
yourself with the real facts associated with the Refuge. One word of
caution: pay close attention to the numbers and what they are truly
assosciated with. Many numbers quoted by advocates to open the Refuge
(inlcuding the National Energy Policy (5-9,10)), refer to the "entire
assessment Area", which includes the 1002 Area, native lands, and
adjacent state water areas within a three-mile boundary. Not only do
these numbers account for land that is not pertinent to this particular
issue, they also discard any applicable economic issues and assume that
the cost of recovery and production are irrelevant. Oil exploration is
already permitted in the other two areas associated with the entire
assessment area which currently harbor several explorative wells.

While the USGS’s most recent assessment results show that the entire
assessment area may contain between 5.7 (95% chance) and 16.0 (5%
chance) billion barrels of technically recoverable oil, the 1002
Area harbors only between 4.25 (95% chance) and 11.80 (5% chance)
BBO, placing between 1.45 (95% chance) and 4.2 (5% chance) BBO
already in reach.

Here is a list of official government websites dealing with info on
drilling in the Refuge:

Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation: Division of Spill
Prevention and Response. Spill Data. 2001. 22 November 2001.

Congressional Research Service. Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: The
Next Chapter. Corn, M. Lynne, Bernard A. Gelb, and Pamela Baldwin. 2001.
13 November 2001. <http://www.cnie.org/nle/nrgen-23.html>.

Energy Information Administration. Potential oil Production from the
Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: Updated
Assessment: Analysis Discussion. 2000. 13 November 2001. <http://www.ei-

Energy Information Administration. Short-Term Energy Outlook—November
2001. 2001. 20 November 2001.

National Energy Policy Development Group. National Energy Policy.
Cheney, Dick, et al. 2001. 13 November 2001.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Alaska National Interest Lands
Conservation Act: Title Ten. 1980. 22 November 2001.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Potential Impacts of Proposed Oil and
Gas Development on the Arctic Refuge’s Coastal Plain: Historical
Overview and Issues of Concern. 2001. 13 November 2001.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Wildlife. 2001. 17 November 2001.

U.S. Geological Survey. The Oil and Gas Resource Potential of the Arctic
National Wildlife Refuge 1002 Area, Alaska. ANWR Assessment Team. 1998.
17 November 2001. <http://energy.cr.usgs.gov/OF98-34>.

I encourage all of you to form your own educated stance on this
important issue. What's mine?

I feel that regardless of the masses of technological advances in the
oil and gas industry, any exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife
Refuge will devastate the fragile arctic ecosystem of one of the last
great wilderness areas in the world. Because of the unique conservation
attributes of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and our responsibility
as stewards of the environment, the long term protection of the entire
Refuge will far outweigh any relative and short term economic offset
produced by oil and gas exploration. I would think that America would
never plug up Old Faithful to harness its thermal energy; or dam the
Colorado River through the Grand Canyon for hydroelectric power.
Congress showed long ago that the northeast section of Alaska was worth
protecting with the establishment of the Arctic National Wildlife
Refuge. Undeniably, there is a continuing need for oil in industrialized
societies. Instead of opening one of the last great wilderness areas to
potentially devastating exploration, conserving resources such as by
raising the fuel-efficiency standards for light trucks and SUV’s to the
current rate of other passenger automobiles, and focusing on harnessing
renewable sources of energy such as solar and wind power will bring
about much more permanent and environmentally harmonious results.

Hungry Howie & The New Sushi


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