Shell Clears More Boundaries with New Oil Drilling Plan
The gas company Shell recently cleared another hurdle in it’s battle for control over arctic oil drills in northern Alaska. This last year, the company proposed a plan to build as many as six exploratory offshore oil wells in Alaska. Since that time, both the company and the Obama administration have been barraged with questions and concerns from environmentalists and businesses alike. The company hopes that the new wells will provide not only business and job opportunities in Alaska but a profitable source of oil in the united states. Opponents of the idea tend to be environmentalists concerned with the adverse affects the drilling might have on the fragile Alaskan ecosystem.
There has been relatively little oil drilling in Alaska since the 90’s when a series of grave oil spills destroyed hundreds of acres of sea life. at that time, the majority of drilling was stopped and many companies looked to the Gulf of Mexico for new answers. The $4 billion plan proposed by Shell would be the first major drilling in almost a decade, and ecologists worry that there hasn't been enough study of the affects of drilling in the arctic waters. Many say there simply aren't enough regulations or safeguards regarding arctic drilling, the affects of the frigid water, and more.
On the other hand, the plan which shell proposed this last week was a hypothetical response plan that diagrammed how the company would deal with an offshore spill, especially in the frigid Alaskan waters.
While the company is far from the receiving the green light, the passing of this bill last week did seem to imply good things for the company. Many weren't sure of the action the Obama administration would take in light of the recent uproar from environmentalists regarding the bill. The fact that they passed the bill anyways does seem to bode good things for the company.
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