8 thoughts on “Drill Baby, Drill

  1. Joe Loveland says:

    Thoughtful and provocative post, Tony. I agree that companies will be extra careful right now. My concern is not whether companies have the right intentions. My concern is whether companies have the right know how.

    I particularly want to make sure we know how to stop deep water leaks when they happen, and that learning is clearly not complete yet. So, I say wait to lift the moratorium until we have better learnings and plans for plugging deep water leaks. I agree that we can’t be slow about this, but we should get our act together a bit more on the spill plugging front. Maybe nine months?

    Longer term, I think we need some kind of government mandated, industry-funded, private R&D cooperative focused on developing technology and methodology for preventing and mitigating deep water spills. We’ve seen that market forces don’t naturally lead industry toward investing in this type of R&D, so the government should make contribution to such an effort one of the prices of doing business. The public sector shouldn’t do the R&D itself, but it should require it of the private sector and oversee it.

  2. Love the headline.

    The drilling isn’t nearly the problem driving is — and all of the other oil-guzzling things we do every day. Let’s not spend any R&D blood or treasure on drilling better; let’s focus on eliminating the need to drill — in deep water or otherwise — in the first place.

    1. Joe Loveland says:

      Mike, I’m with you. I have two hybrids and I’m all for toughening CAFE standards and other conservation requirements. But the addiction can’t be eliminated overnight, so we have to figure out a way to make current deep water drilling operations safer.

      1. Do we? What’s riskier? Finding ways to make risky drilling less risky and let ’em keep on drillin’, or busting asses to put an end to the drilling altogether ASAP?

        I suppose level heads would say, “Let’s do both at the same time.”

  3. john sherman says:

    An interesting question involves mopping up technology. In 1979 the Ixtoc well blew out in the Gulf of Mexico like a shallower version of Deepwater Horizon, and it took 11 months to cap it, and there’s still a legacy of environmental crap from it. As far as I can tell the technology–booms, skimmers etc.–for cleaning up after an oil disaster hasn’t advanced a millimeter in over 30 years.

    Whose fault is it? Who should rectify it? How? When? Who is responsible for seeing that when the shit hits the fan, there are umbrellas and mops available?

  4. Maren says:

    Makes more sense to me that those workers are out of work as a direct result of BP’s negligence (did we mention lies and corruption?) and should be paid by BP for all lost compensations. And while BP is paying them and they’re not allowed to drill, they can start sifting sand on beacehs all along the coast to clean up the mess that will impact my grandchildren’s grandchildren.

    At the same time, those companies whose workers are now being paid by BP to sift sand can put resources into technology like the aircar (http://zeropollutionmotors.us/ or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ztFDqcu8oJ4) , the seaweed and sand power cell (http://www.bloomenergy.com/) or water engines (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4563676/).

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