To: Sally Jewel, Secretary of the Interior, Gina McCarty, Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency, and President Donald Trump
Stop Shell's Disastrous Arctic Drilling plan (again)
Scientists say that to save the planet from climate chaos, we must leave three-quarters of our remaining fossil fuel reserves in the ground — including all of the oil and gas in the Arctic.
I, therefore, call on you to reject Shell’s doomed-to-fail-again plan to drill in the Arctic once and for all.
Why is this important?
Neither risk of an oil spill nor global climate change nor the falling price of oil will keep Shell from exploiting the Arctic’s oil. But you can.
In 2012, Shell oil embarked on a dangerous plan to drill for oil in the frigid and unforgiving waters of the Arctic. It was a disaster.
As documented in popular press reports and a recent retrospective “the Wreck of the Kullig” Shell’s mission was plagued by failure after failure1: Their vessels couldn’t meet basic air quality standards, were deemed unfit for the voyage by the coast guard, and unable to drill for oil at all by experts. Their experimental containment dome - the critical piece of equipment that’s supposed to protect the fragile ecosystem in the event of a well blowout - was “crushed like a beer can” in a simulation.
Shell never even made it to their destination, or drilled a single well - despite spending millions of (taxpayer subsidized) dollars on the attempt. Then, in an attempt to dodge local alaskan taxes, Shell finally gave up and tried to tow it’s rig out of the arctic. Only to lose control of the massive structure and see it run aground (fortunately with no oil aboard).
Two short years later, Shell’s back to try again, and it’s still a bad idea2. If Big Oil companies can’t even drill safely in the calm and warm water of the gulf of Mexico, how can we possibly expect them to get it right in the dangers, icy, waters of the Arctic? And if anything does go wrong, it will be nearly impossible to contain or clean up a spill in the Arctic - as the wreck of the Kullig clearly illustrates.3
But none of that seems to matter to Shell, which has already invested $1 billion in their plan to drill the Arctic - not to mention millions more in lobbying fees and political donations to our elected leaders.4
President Obama has been talking tough on climate change in the last few months. And under his direction, the Department of Interior and EPA have moved to protect critical arctic ecosystems like Bristol bay from mining, drilling and other disasters. But there’s still no law or policy that stops Shell from drilling the Arctic. Sign here to tell President Obama and his team that it’s time to shut the door on Arctic drilling for good - and block Shell’s plans.
1 - http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/04/magazine/the-wreck-of-the-kulluk.html?_r=0
2 - http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/01/29/shell-arctic-idUSL6N0V846B20150129
3 - http://www.salon.com/2015/01/11/why_arctic_drilling_is_a_disaster_waiting_to_happen/
4 - http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/01/29/shell-arctic-idUSL6N0V846B20150129