Should We Drill for Offshore Oil?
The yes argument for offshore drill has increased due to skyrocketing fuel prices, continued wars, and rising unemploy- ment as shown from a Gallop poll that was conducted in May of 2008. The political landscape is also changing in favor of offshore drilling. The environmental concerns Americans less because of the increasing financial strain being realized by a majority of the American public.
If we had increased offshore drilling it could help lower the United States trade deficit. Also, the United States are forced to make political decisions that they may not otherwise make. As an example, invading Iraq and cooperating with hostile governments.
Safety measures have improved considerable in recent years. The United States has been leading in development of modern offshore oil industry and the advancement of new safety technologies ranging from blowout preverters to computer-controlled well data design to help prevent disasters. According to the US Minerals Management Service there is only 0.001 percent pollution rate from oil wells.
The no argument explains the affects from offshore drilling to our marine environment due to quick influx and concentration of oil during a spill. An example is plants and animals that become coated in oil perish from mechanical smothering as well as birds dying from hypothermia because their feathers lose their waterproofing.
The impact to the health of the workers, victims of oil spills, and rescue workers when they come in contact with drill fluids, muds, and cuttings range from dermatitis and as exposure increases can include hypokalemia, renal toxicity, and cardiovascular and neuromuscular effects. Exposure to volatile aromatic hydrocarbons results in respiratory distress and unconsciousness. Long term exposure can cause addition illnesses such as leukemia and anemia and exposure to PAH (fine particle matter) can cause such illnesses as asthma and cancer....