Should the U.S. Allow Offshore Oil Drilling?

Our lives revolve around oil. Oil brings food to our stores, comprises the fibers in our carpets and makes the plastic in our DVDs. With demand so high it’s no wonder attention has turned to supply, with some advocating the U.S. lift the ban against drilling for oil off its coasts. Is offshore oil drilling a golden opportunity, or would it only create a tidal wave of disaster?

America has to get away from oil. We need better energy alternatives. Of course, this doesn't exactly answer the question, and just saying we need to break the oil addiction doesn't clear everything up. Change may take time. I think we should at least restrict offshore drilling, if not abolish it. But America needs to change so that there will be no need for copious drilling.

America won't quit using oil, and if we're going to use it, why not use our own? We're trying to become less dependent on imported oil, and this to me seems like it would help alot. The U.S. consumes way too much oil. Why not keep the industry in the U.S.? Yes, the U.S. oil companies are disgustingly rich, but someone's getting paid regardless, we either help our economy or help the economy in the middle east. The way our's is looking, we should do whatever possible. Offshore drilling would create more industry in the U.S., meaning more jobs. Nobody would complain about cheaper gas prices. It seems like a good idea to me.

Oil is a non-renewable reasource, so drilling more out of the Earth isn't going to give us any more than is already there. Instead of using a temporary fix, we need to invest more in green technology so it's as eco-friendly as possible and availible to everyone. Until we can use this alternate technology, there are other solutions. Walk, ride a bike, take the bus.. do anything that you can to reduce your consumption of oil.

taking care of your car is also a must, otherwise you have too keep on paying for its expenses.

The thought that offshore drilling won't fix anything is absurd. Look at the money that drilling brought to Texas. You don't think that kind of money might be useful to researchers trying to find your "eco-friendly" solution? Money does not grow on trees, especially in this economy. The income offshore drilling could bring to this country would definitely help the economy. While you are correct in saying that oil is not a renewable resource, you seem to believe that that means we should stop using it. We need to come up with renewable sources, true, but we still have plenty of oil left to use before we get there. The gas companies won't mind that we don't use gas anymore if they own the nuclear power plants that power the future.

When you say, "the money that drilling brought to Texas", don't you mean, "the money that drilling brought to the Texas oil companies"? For some reason, I don't exactly see the CEOs of oil companies lining up to fund wind and solar power.

I don't advise nuclear power because we don't know what do to with the radioactive waste, which isn't safe at all for us or the environment.

Oil drilling hurts the environment, so even if there is still some left, it doesn't mean that we should wreck the world to tap into it.

And just to be contrary - money does grow on trees. It's made out of paper.

When I say, "the money that drilling brought to Texas," I mean exactly that. Farmers who owned land with oil in it sold to the oil companies for big bucks, the oil companies hired huge numbers of people, and all of the stockholders (who are regular people, despite what Nancy Pelosi would have you believe) and many employees, not just the CEOs, got very rich. With all this extra cash coming in, everyone not invested in the oil company now had a great deal of newly wealthy consumers who helped business throughout the state. Everyone wins. I mean what I say.

With or without your stamp of approval, nuclear power is the most viable renewable power source we have left, though it may not be the most PC. Most people who think for themselves and question authority, and don't worship at the green altar support nuclear energy. That doesn't necessarily mean that other forms of energy are invalid, it simply means that they are as of now inferior. Not to say more research and development couldn't change that, but it certainly seems like reinventing the wheel to me.

As for oil drilling hurting the enviornment, recent history has shown us that if we don't drill for it, the Chinese will. Either we can drill for it, with our heightened sensitivity for the enviornment and our numerous safeguards, or we can let the Chinese, who frankly don't give a damn, so long as they get their oil. Furthermore, since we don't have a valid solution to the energy problem other than injecting more oil into the equation, this is what needs to happen. Using a bicylce as your primary mode of transportation is simply not feasible in this country.

Trying to ban everything that "hurts the enviornment" is ridiculous. Humans aren't good for the enviornment. Since I don't think you want to eliminate the human race (though there are those who do) we're going to have to do the best we can with what we have. There is a lot that goes into drilling for oil, especially at sea, that makes it as safe for the enviornment as possible. As for nuclear, we do know what to do with the waste. We put it in drums and bury it a few miles down in big rooms with concrete walls with lead in them. They're even looking at new technology that will let them convert radioactive waste back into material usable for fission. You reall need to stop drinking the green kool-aid and start Thinking For Yourself and Questioning Authority. You don't have any argument other than "That's not good for the enviornment."

And just to correct your contrary remark, money does not grow on trees. It's made out of cotton. Furthermore, even if it did grow on trees, simply printing more money has invariably made the situation worse, not better.

Interesting how the zealots have identified oil as the one commodity in existance that would not go down in price if there was more of it. Great idea on their part but it will fail because people are just smarter than that.

Hi my name is America, and I'm addicted to Oil.
[Audience responds, "Hi America"]
I became addicted to oil because for over the last 30 years I have not invested in signfigant mass transit systems in the South and West which are the areas of the country with the most population growth. (San Francisco, Atlanta, and Seattle are exceptions.)
Then I have created a car culture that is fueled now by buying the largest and most obtrusive vehicles on the road, SUV's. People want to be seen. I mean hey I am America we are a flashy set of folks. Problem is SUV's are gas guzzlers. At the same time I have not required more strigent fuel standards. The big 3 have not changed their engineering and marketing designs. It took a Japaneses car maker Toyota to understand making more cost efficient and fuel efficient cars will sell. Oh well.
Also at the same time even though its pretty obvious that we've grown too large for just oil. I mean America uses 25% of the world's oil and has less than 5% of its people. Yea I'd say we just a wee bit out of control.
Get this too. As other countries and companies can see my addiction they keep going up on the product at crucial times. Damn I know they're hustling me, I'm just so addicted I can't say no.
What is this? There's more Oil in Alaska!?!?!! Then drill!!!! It won't be available for at least another 7-10 years? That's okay, I'll just keep going off what I have. As long as I can get more soon. [Counselor chides in this won't make much of a change in consumption and price if any.]
What it alone won't make up for the expected increases in energy consumption? But its more right? It'll taste better right being American right!?!?!?! Good enough for me!!!!
So keep giving me gas and not giving me my methadone of hybrid cars, better city planning, and renewable energy. I'll clean up. I promise. Just let me ride down the street in my Expedition in rush hour traffic through downtown okay?


I thought your opinion was really great. The description of Americans ' addiction to cars is so true. We could all be demanding better trains and more of them throughout the country, but no, people have to have a car. I think we are all responsible for this oil spill.

You are wrong on so many points. First off, hybrid cars aren't the answer. They are cars that get good gas mileage but not atronomically good and when they are buring gas, they are creating emmisions just like any car. In fact, in the 1970's they had cars like the Chevette that got better gas mileage. Never mind the huge environmental impact of the batteries for a hybrid. Did you know that a Hummer has less of an environmental impact than a Prius for the first 2 1/2 years? If you really cared about the environment, you'd be driving a 1970's Honda whose environmental footprint is near zero.

While we should absoluetly be pouring tons of money into other renewable fuel sources, the reality is we are decades at best away from getting off our oil addiction.

And for you to say that offshore drilling is bad for the environment, you make no sense what so ever. Do you think the Saudis are worried about the environment? Do you think Chechnya is concerned about greenhouse gases? How about worker safety? Think that they are worried about that in Yemen?

And what do you think causes oil spills? Oil tankers, the ships that currently bring us our oil. How many hurricanes need to rip through the gulf with zero damage for you to wake up to the obvious? Because if you are really an environmentalist, you should be screaming to drill here instead of importing a drop of oil from overseas.

Lastly, don't forget that in the last 20 years there have been 100 million barrels of oil spilled due to offshore drilling, 95%+ of which outside the US. Whereas over 650 million barrels of oil are spilled every single year by that enemy of the environment, mother nature.

Environmentalist extremists are wacked. We need electric cars, never mind that we don't have the electricity to run them because we can't use nuclear thanks to dopey movies from the 1970's like China Syndrome. We can't damn rivers because it will hurt fish. We can't use wind power because it kills birds. We can't drill here. But we need to get off foreign oil. The day I see Al gore ride a bike somewhere, I'll buy into the movement.

I AM an environmentalist and I am for nucelar energy which produces no greenhouse gasses, I am for safe and monitored offshore drilling under any circumstances but especially considering the laternative of getting oil from some where else and having it shipped here, I am for wind power (my apologies to the bat population), I like hydrogen fuel cells if the hydrogen can be produced by renewable means.

I think instead of giving lucrative oil leases to the oil companies the politicians should set up a division within the national parks to drill and mine on federally controlled land. The division could go to Alaska or where ever they could get oil on the market the fastest and drill. They could build a pipeline to ship the oil across federal land and sell it at market price. $4-5.oo per barrel could be put into a fund devoted to clean up of federal land even to the point of returning the land to its natural state once the oil is gone. Half the profits could be used to finance other drilling and mining operations. The other half could be used to finance environmentally friendly projects. Instead of leading the world in pollution the US could lead the world in the fight against global warming.