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Thu Jul 23, 2015, 07:15 AM

Cries of Betrayal, Calls to Organize as Obama Approves Arctic Drilling


Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Cries of Betrayal, Calls to Organize as Obama Approves Arctic Drilling

'With this decision, President Obama has given Shell an open invitation to turn the Chukchi Sea into an energy sacrifice zone,' said Marissa Knodel of Friends of the Earth


President Barack Obama on Wednesday afternoon gave the final go-ahead for Royal Dutch Shell PLC to drill for oil in the Chukchi Sea near Alaska, flouting fierce public opposition to the extraction over the severe danger it poses to the ocean ecosystem, climate, and coastal communities.

"The president has made a big mistake allowing Shell back into the Arctic," declared Center for Biological Diversity Alaska director Rebecca Noblin in a press statement released Wednesday. "The risks of a devastating oil spill in this harsh environment are just too great, particularly for a company with such poor performance record. This is a reckless move by a country that is still struggling to reduce its impact on global warming."

The permits granted Wednesday mean that the oil giant can commence with drilling exploratory wells as soon as its vessels and equipment reach the sea. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement announced it has included some conditions, limiting Shell to "drilling only the top sections of wells and prohibit Shell from drilling into oil-bearing zones."

But campaigners say that the restrictions are weak, and the fact that Shell will now be permitted to drill in the Arctic constitutes a deep betrayal of Obama's own pledge to make tackling climate change one of his top three priorities during his second term.

Moreover, the decision comes as scientists warn that to avert a climate catastrophe, the majority of fossil fuel deposits around the world must remain unused....

http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/07/22/cries-betrayal-calls-organize-obama-approves-arctic-drilling


Repost from last wkd~

Kayaktivists Across the Country Paddle in Protest of Arctic Drilling
7/18/15



Environmentalists furious with President Barack Obama's continued support for Arctic drilling on Saturday descended on the White House and paddled onto waterways across the United States united in a call to end this dangerous expansion of our fossil fuel energy system.

In a display of solidarity with Seattle's 'kayaktivists'—who through repeated direct actions have tried to thwart Royal Dutch Shell's Arctic drilling plans—activists in Minnesota, Florida, Boston, Detroit, and elsewhere launched floating protests to denounce what they say is a "fool's journey" to drill for oil in the Chukchi Sea in the Alaskan Arctic.

#mpls says #ShellNo! pic.twitter.com/XAqDmAmHTV

— Lois Norrgard (@lnorr10) July 18, 2015



Meanwhile, in Washington D.C.'s Lafayette Park, protesters donned polar bear and walrus suits and held signs calling on the president to suspend Shell's permit. The oil giant's drilling fleet is currently making its way from the Port of Seattle to the Alaskan coast, where it could begin exploratory drilling as soon as next week, activists warn.



Happening Now: Enviros sound alarm on Arctic oil exploration and tell White House stop new drilling permits #ShellNo pic.twitter.com/FQ7oYzQNw5

— john zangas (@johnzangas) July 18, 2015

Environmentalists have repeatedly criticized Arctic drilling as one of the most dangerous and extreme forms of fossil fuel extraction, as it threatens one of the world's most pristine ecosystems while concurrently ensuring even greater carbon emissions....

READ MORE~
http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/07/18/kayaktivists-across-country-paddle-protest-arctic-drilling




Rhea Suh, NRDC, penned the following excellent article about Arctic drilling & why its insane & needs to be stopped~

Stop Shell. Save the Arctic.
7/18/15

...As early as next week, the Royal Dutch Shell oil company could begin exploratory drilling in the Arctic, exposing these waters to the risk of devastating oil spills and ensuring more carbon pollution, which would undermine the gains our country is now making in the fight against climate change.



One of the last pristine oceans on earth, these waters support a rich web of marine and animal life, from tiny phytoplankton to majestic bowhead whales. Eiders, snowy owls and caribou live along the coast. And the ocean hosts some of the most productive fisheries anywhere in the world. Why would we put all that at risk, when our own government tells us there’s a 75 percent chance of a major oil spill if the Arctic leases in the Chukchi Sea are fully developed?

....SNIP of 2 pages of history of past spills & relevant facts....

...Now imagine a similar disaster in the Arctic, a place where pack ice makes sea travel all but impossible eight months out of the year for any craft other than the sturdiest icebreakers; where gale force winds can kick up waves as high as a three-story building; and where winters that begin in September with wind-chill factors that make temperatures feel like 10 degrees below zero.

Want to talk about capping a blowout under those conditions? Or cleaning up massive clots of frigid oil in seas where an iceberg can peel open the hull of a ship like a paring knife through a potato skin? Or how long it might take for coldwater habitat to recover from an oil spill?
....

....The fossil-fuel industry wants us to believe we’re stuck with oil and all the damage, danger, and destruction it brings. That we have no choice but to accept that 30 years from now we might need Arctic oil — based on demand assumptions, which the International Energy Agency says would result in an average global temperature increase of at least six degrees Celsius — three times what science states the planet can sustain.

Well, we’re not stuck with oil. We can do better than assume climate failure.

We’ve already cut our oil consumption in this country 21 percent as a share of our real economic output over just the past decade. Imagine what we can do in the decades to come if we put our minds to building on that success....

Read article in full here~
http://ecowatch.com/2015/07/18/stop-shell-save-the-arctic/3/


We the People keep protesting, but $$$ keeps trumping people & planet.

We need to get $$$ out of Politics if we want sustainable life on earth.

(xposted in GD)

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