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Old 18-06-2008, 04:18   #1
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Hazard to navigation?

Saw this article today about planned oil riggs and natural gas equipment off our shores.

Seems like it would be a mess of metal, pipelines and other garbage.

Bush looks offshore for remedy to high oil prices - Yahoo! News
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Old 18-06-2008, 06:31   #2
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From the article:

Quote:
The 574 million acres of federal coastal water that are off-limits are believed to hold nearly 18 billion barrels of undiscovered, recoverable oil and 77 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, according to the Interior Department. The country each year uses about 7.6 billion barrels of oil and 21 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.
So that's about 2 1/3 years supply of oil and about 3 1/3 years supply of natural gas. And according to the article, about 10 years before supply to the consumer starts. Hmmm. Seems to me that's a lot of crap cluttering up our coastline for not much gain.
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Old 18-06-2008, 06:41   #3
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And when you add the offshore wind energy farms proposed for Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, and Texas, it's likely to get a bit crowded out there.
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Old 18-06-2008, 07:12   #4
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Apart from the visual pollution of these rigs, there will inevitably be oil slicks/spills that will damage the environment and hurt tourism. One would have thought that the spill from a single tanker, the Exxon Valdiz, would have left a permanent reminder of not only the costs to wildlife and the environment, but the financial costs that will be associated with any clean-up.

Leaving the decision to the individual states is also interesting - so far as I know, oil spills do not respect state (nor for that matter as a Canadian, national) boundaries. As I recall, by 1980 the United States had already been through one particularly severe 'oil crisis' (in 1972) and yet did not let panic rule their policy on either oil or the environment. People and yes, even government, were then unwilling to sacrifice their children's right to enjoy the seas and their nation's coast for a short-term solution. But today the United States is becoming nothing more than an unapologetic junky who, rather than trying to beat the habit, offers to sell off the belongings of his children in order to purchase yet another fix.

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Old 18-06-2008, 07:15   #5
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Offshore rigs make great racing marks. However, in parts of the world the abandoned ones are not lit.
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Old 18-06-2008, 07:17   #6
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To meet the requirement that threads be related to "boating", Sean invoked the subject of "navigation". Shall we follow that path, rather than the political route?
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Old 18-06-2008, 07:34   #7
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Valid point Hud, although oils slicks and the potential destruction of our coastal habitat are surely subjects that are relevant to cruising. What about getting behind the notion of a surtax on gas/diesel fuel for pleasure boating (so long as the revenue went into a dedicated fund for research into alternative energy sources)? It would be fairly easy to enforce - the gas/diesel for use in pleasure boats would be tinted a different color.

There must be others out there who believe that we, as pleasure boaters, should not only be concerned about the potential impact upon our 'playground' (and the playground for our children), but about the negative impact of what we do.

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Old 18-06-2008, 08:11   #8
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What about getting behind the notion of a surtax on gas/diesel fuel for pleasure boating
Just what we need, more taxes.
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:15   #9
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There must be others out there who believe that we, as pleasure boaters, should not only be concerned about the potential impact upon our 'playground' (and the playground for our children), but about the negative impact of what we do.

Brad
I'm with you on that! That's one reason I have a sailboat, a kayak, no air conditioning (no heat for that matter), and an automobile with an engine so small it just barely makes it up the hill to my house.

I've never sailed the U.S. Gulf Coast, however, and I wonder what the impact of the oil rigs there actually is on navigation, aesthetics, and pollution of the marine environment. I'd like to know more about actual impacts, before deciding whether I'm for or against drilling in previously off-limits areas.
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:17   #10
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Just what we need, more taxes.
Amen

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Old 18-06-2008, 08:51   #11
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Hud, I too now drive automobiles that stress economy over performance - a VW turbo-diesel in Canada and a Renault Kangoo ( a van with only a 1400 cc gasoline engine) on Margarita Island - the latter despite the fact that I was paying the equivalent of only 4.9 cents a litre for 95 octane fuel in March.

I too own a sailboat without air conditioning or heat, although truth be known my preference for sailboats pre-dated any significant societal concerns about our reserves of oil and the environment.

Nobody likes taxes (and I suspect that I have paid and continue to pay more than most on this site). That being said, both user taxes and tax breaks can (and in my opinion should) be used to discourage certain activities (in this case, the unnecessary/excessive consumption of oil) and to encourage certain other activities (in this case, the development and promotion of alternative technologies and the reduction in consumption of oil and electricity). Really, the combination of TAX INCENTIVES (tax breaks for not only R&D into altermative energy sources, but also the purchase of hybrids and diesel automobiles, installation of better insulation, windows, doors in houses and the purchase of more efficient appliances, etc.), COMBINED WITH INCREASED TAXATION on fuel and electrical consumption, could/should in the long term be essentially revenue neutral for the smart consumer. Its not really a question of another 'tax grab', but rather of creative use of taxation as an instrument of policy.

To me, in a time when our economies are not only increasingly dependant upon the supply and price of foreign oil, but also increasingly at the mercy of OPEC nations, I believe that we should all do our part. And in that connection, yes, I believe that the use of oil for recreational activities should be discouraged. I will continue to sail (and motor), but I should expect to pay more for that 'luxury' and its societal costs than the fuel consumed by commercial fisherman and truck drivers.

Brad

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Old 18-06-2008, 10:09   #12
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We moved our boat from Galveston Bay to Corpus Christi, TX a few weeks ago. A very good friend of mine and his wife, from the East Coast of Florida, went with us. They were AMAZED that the Texas Coast has all of these wells, platforms and miles of refineries in Galveston Bay and Corpus Christi Bay, and the area and water are SO CLEAN. For some reason, people think drilling & production = pollution, and it doesn't.
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Old 18-06-2008, 10:33   #13
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When I was a kid, a day at the beach always included TAR REMOVER by day's end, and that was in what were considered "excellent" waters. I can't see any reason to commit big money to big industry to start construction on platforms that won't produce for 6-8 years, and then will just be stopgap measures. Dubyah really needs to get an education, or maybe talk to the Chinese and Arabs about "thousand year thinking".

Aesthetically I don't like wind farms, but I see that as a choice: get used to the white whirlygigs, or turn out the lights. I like turning out the lights even less!

And once someone figures out how to install lighting (like Jumbotrons) and co-ordinate it so the farm becomes a giant billboard....UGH. But I suppose that'll defer the power costs even more. Maybe now is the time to start regulating advertising on them.
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Old 18-06-2008, 10:40   #14
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Please note you said: "When I was a kid". Same thing here, 40 years ago. Those same beaches, at the Jersey Shore, are now free of "tar". We have no "tar" on Texas beaches either...

The "tar" was from cleaning the insides of tankers after delivery - which is MOSTLY a thing of the past. Seems that tankers are paid on how much they pick up, not deliver, and they rinsed the leftovers out into the sea to make room for the new load.

Oh, yeah. You're right. If CLINTON had allowed drilling 8 years ago, they would be PRODUCING now...
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Old 18-06-2008, 11:10   #15
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All valid points, but again, how does this impact navigation? How does this directly effect cruising?
What about concerns over increased commercial marine traffic, increased debri durring construction, and any other issues that might better fit this catagory than whether or not this will improve our energy situation.
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