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EPA Forces Shell To Abandon AK Oil Plans

From Fox News:

Energy in America: EPA Rules Force Shell to Abandon Oil Drilling Plans

By Dan Springer
Published April 25, 2011 | FoxNews.com

Shell Oil Company has announced it must scrap efforts to drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska. The decision comes following a ruling by the EPA’s Environmental Appeals Board to withhold critical air permits. The move has angered some in Congress and triggered a flurry of legislation aimed at stripping the EPA of its oil drilling oversight.

Shell has spent five years and nearly $4 billion dollars on plans to explore for oil in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas. The leases alone cost $2.2 billion. Shell Vice President Pete Slaiby says obtaining similar air permits for a drilling operation in the Gulf of Mexico would take about 45 days.

That is, back when you could get a permit to drill in the Gulf.

He’s especially frustrated over the appeal board’s suggestion that the Arctic drill would somehow be hazardous for the people who live in the area. “We think the issues were really not major,” Slaiby said, “and clearly not impactful for the communities we work in.”

The closest village to where Shell proposed to drill is Kaktovik, Alaska. It is one of the most remote places in the United States. According to the latest census, the population is 245 and nearly all of the residents are Alaska natives. The village, which is 1 square mile, sits right along the shores of the Beaufort Sea, 70 miles away from the proposed off-shore drill site.

What a pathetic joke.

The EPA’s appeals board ruled that Shell had not taken into consideration emissions from an ice-breaking vessel when calculating overall greenhouse gas emissions from the project.

What another pathetic joke. In fact, it is criminal.

Environmental groups were thrilled by the ruling.

Because they don’t drive cars or heat their houses or use anything made out of plastic. Because they would are so hell bent on destroying our economy, they don’t mind the thought of old people dying because they can’t afford to heat their houses properly.

“What the modeling showed was in communities like Kaktovik, Shell’s drilling would increase air pollution levels close to air quality standards,” said Eric Grafe, Earthjustice’s lead attorney on the case. Earthjustice was joined by Center for Biological Diversity and the Alaska Wilderness League in challenging the air permits.

Oh, well if that is what the "modeling showed" than it must be true. Heaven knows there is no way to bias the outcome with flawed data.

At stake is an estimated 27 billion barrels of oil. That’s how much the U. S. Geological Survey believes is in the U.S. portion of the Arctic Ocean. For perspective, that represents two and a half times more oil than has flowed down the Trans Alaska pipeline throughout its 30-year history. That pipeline is getting dangerously low on oil. At 660,000 barrels a day, it’s carrying only one-third its capacity.

Production on the North Slope of Alaska is declining at a rate of about 7 percent a year. If the volume gets much lower, pipeline officials say they will have to shut it down.

Would it be illegal to speculate that this kind of news might be driving up the price of oil around he world?

Alaska officials are blasting the Environmental Protection Agency. “It’s driving investment and production overseas,” said Alaska’s DNR Commissioner Dan Sullivan. “That doesn’t help the United States in any way, shape or form.”

Someone will find a way to get this oil. Probably by accessing it from outside US waters. Or maybe the EPA will be kinder to a Brazilian or Chinese, or indeed, any non-American company.

The EPA did not return repeated calls and e-mails. The Environmental Appeals Board has four members: Edward Reich, Charles Sheehan, Kathie Stein and Anna Wolgast. All are registered Democrats and Kathie Stein was an activist attorney for the Environmental Defense Fund. Members are appointed by the EPA administrator.

Is Fox News suggesting that the EPA might have a political agenda? What a shock.

Alaska’s Republican senator thinks it’s time to make some changes. “EPA has demonstrated that they’re not competent to handle the process,” said Sen. Lisa Murkowski. “So if they’re not competent to handle it, they need to get out of the way.”

Murkowski supported budget amendments that would have stripped the EPA of its oversight role in Arctic offshore drilling. The Interior Department issues air permits to oil companies working in the Gulf of Mexico.

And Ms. Murkowski is practically a Democrat herself.

(Thanks to BillK for the heads up.)

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, April 26th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

13 Responses to “EPA Forces Shell To Abandon AK Oil Plans”

  1. BillK says:

    Why thank you, Mr. Obama.

    From Fox News:

    Energy in America: EPA Rules Force Shell to Abandon Oil Drilling Plans

    By Dan Springer

    Shell Oil Company has announced it must scrap efforts to drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska. The decision comes following a ruling by the EPA’s Environmental Appeals Board to withhold critical air permits. The move has angered some in Congress and triggered a flurry of legislation aimed at stripping the EPA of its oil drilling oversight…

    What the modeling showed was in communities like Kaktovik, Shell’s drilling would increase air pollution levels close to air quality standards,” said Eric Grafe, Earthjustice’s lead attorney on the case. Earthjustice was joined by Center for Biological Diversity and the Alaska Wilderness League in challenging the air permits. …

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/04/25/energy-america-oil-drilling-denial/

    Once again computer models – which are specifically programmed to find certain effects, often that cannot be proved my actual analysis of data (see: Global Warming) comes to the rescue of the environmentalists.

    Is it any wonder that other countries are so big into oil exploration today?

  2. River0 says:

    Obama is still “liked” by over 40% of our fellow citizens! We have to marvel at the brain-dead who walk among us. They are capable of destroying this nation.

    Every minute that goes by with the American people accepting this state of affairs is a black stain on them and our country. It’s a clear evil that the same president who goes to Brazil and encourages them to drill – while providing loans for them, too – prohibits us from developing our own resources.

    • Petronius says:

      I, too, find that 40% figure troubling.

      That the regime, under current economic conditions, continues to hold popular support from anyone other than diehard Marxists is amazing.

      I can only put it down to the propaganda power of the MBM and the boundless gullibility of the American idiocracy.

      What is that old saying? “In a democracy the people get the government they deserve.”

    • TheOriginalDonald says:

      Wait til gas hits $5.00 a gallon and THEN we’ll se who the real brain-dead are.

    • Longboat says:

      This is absolutely the most insightful and cogent analysis of the predicament that America is in today that I have seen.

      An anonymous writer reputed to be from the Czech Republic (obviously a student of the present great American decline) recently summed up the essence of our problem:

      “The danger to America is not Barack Obama but a citizenry capable of entrusting a man like him with the Presidency. It will be far easier to limit and undo the follies of an Obama presidency than to restore the necessary common sense and good judgment to a shallow, unthinking electorate willing to have such a man for their president.

      The problem is much deeper and far more serious than Mr. Obama, who is a mere symptom of what ails America. Blaming the prince of fools should not blind anyone to the vast confederacy of fools that made him their prince. The Republic can survive a Barack Obama, who is, after all, merely a fool. It is less likely to survive a multitude of fools such as those who made him their president.”

      McAlvany Intelligence Advisor, February 2011, page 6 http://www.publishers-management.com/mia/pdf/mia1102.pdf

      In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. – George Orwell
      America is desperate for a ‘revolution of truth’ for this is definitively “a time of universal deceit”.

  3. Petronius says:

    So was he lying then or is he lying now?

    In a speech at Georgetown University on 30 March, Nerobama attacked the oil industry for not drilling on leases. He conveniently forgot to mention that his appointees in the EPA and other government agencies steadfastly refuse to issue permits that would allow oil companies to drill on those leases. Nerobama’s refusal to issue drilling permits has rendered the leases worthless, while he blames the oil industry and “speculators” for the ill effects of his own policies.

  4. GetBackJack says:

    During Obama’s January 2008 talk with the San Francisco Chronicle, he also mentions how electricity rates would “skyrocket” (H/T to Hot Air’s Ed Morrisey for focusing in on this)(my emphasis added:)

    The problem is not technical, and the problem is not sufficient mastery of the legislative intricacies of Washington.
    The problem is can you get the American people to say this is really important and force their representatives to do the right thing? That requires mobilizing a citizenry. That requires them understanding what is at stake, and climate change is a great example.
    When I was asked earlier about the issue of coal…under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket…even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad, because I’m capping greenhouse gasses, coal power plants, natural gas…you name it…whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, they would have to retro-fit their operations.
    That will cost money…they will pass that money on to the consumers. You can already see what the arguments are going to be during the general election. People will say Obama and Al Gore …these folks…they’re going to destroy the economy.
    This is going to cost us 8 trillion dollars or whatever their number is. If you can’t persuade the American people that, yes, there is going to be some increase on electricity rates on the front end, but that over the long term, because of combinations of more efficient energy usage and changing light bulbs and more efficient appliances, but also technology improving how we can produce clean energy that the economy will benefit.
    If we can’t make that argument persuasively enough, you can be Lyndon Johnson. You can be the master of Washington. You’re not gonna get that done.

    Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/kerry-picket/2008/11/02/obama-energy-prices-will-skyrocket#ixzz1KdTX1qZX

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      That Obie quote….jeez…

      It is so filled with contradictions and non-sequiturs that I would have to grade it a D-. Possibly an F+. The plus signifies that he exemplifies failing on a grand scale. his socialist totalitarian wet dreams are coming true and yet, somehow…he’s still the angriest man on earth. Curious, that. The socialist left should be creaming their jeans….yet…gee, I think even the hippies have to buy gas for their Toyota Pious’s do they not? And when arugula costs $5.00/lb, who are they going to blame then? Bush?

      To every flaming socialist who thought their family trip to Yurp was such a great time and that “we should do things more like they do” well….here it is. Inflation on a criminal level, unemployment at a real 20+%. No one getting a home loan. No oil production here domestically (it’s coming…they’ll figure out a way to shut down the existing works before too long) thus creating Yurp-like prices at the pump. Oh BOY isn’ this such great fun?

      What’s that? It’s not what you expected? You expected what? Oh…peace love and harmony? Oh yeah…that went out when the last Black Sabbath record was printed. BTW have you even heard of CD’s and DVD’s? Or is your hair too long and your brain too addled with pot smoke to think clearly? “Like wow, man….I wanted to get some, like organic sprouts at the store but they were, like, 25 dollars for two ounces. That damn Bush, I’ll tell ya.”

      Yeah, you elected a devout communist to the rank of president. You will never understand.

      You know why socialist nations never bothered to try to protect any other nation in the world? Because nobody had any energy…they were all poor and starving in their own countries to be able to go help anyone else. In fact, even the military often couldn’t supply food to its own troops. And they didn’t refine enough fuel to power their military..or be able to get it from any ally without some give-back.

      Get real, hippies. You have delayed growing up well into your 60’s. Nothing worse than a senior citizen hippie.

  5. BigOil says:

    “What the modeling showed was in communities like Kaktovik, Shell’s drilling would increase air pollution levels close to air quality standards”

    So Shell was denied a permit based upon a model indicating pollution levels that are within acceptable limits.

    We’ve reached the point in our country where oil companies incur less risk by investing and drilling in places like Venezuela.

  6. mr_bill says:

    It seems to me that the proper time to raise this issue was when the leases were granted. There is a process for the environmental alarmists to protest the issuance of a federal oil and gas lease once it has been auctioned but before the Dept. of the Interior issues the lease. Of course, the protest goes through an administrative court and not through the EPA, so its more difficult to rig the outcome by selecting a bunch of activist liberals to “decide” the matter.

    I’ll bet that GE would have been green-lighted for proposing the exact same exploration project. The third-worldisms of nerobama’s regime are getting harder to hide all the time. BigOil is right, there’s more certainty in working in places like Venezuela, Russia and Columbia – at least there you know who is corrupt and you can plan accordingly.

  7. Right of the People says:

    “Edward Reich, Charles Sheehan, Kathie Stein and Anna Wolgast” these butt pirates should be on everyone’s Public Enemies list and some of the first to swing when we take over.

    I wonder if Charles Sheehan is related to the whackadoodle Cindy Sheehan?

    • JohnMG says:

      With deductive reasoning skills such as he displays, I’d say he’s more likely related to Charlie Sheen.

  8. canary says:

    The worthless union run EPA actually moved. They moved In their seats a bit.


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