Offshore drilling is a method of extracting petroleum from beneath the sea. It has created quit a bit of controversy, claims have been made that it is a detriment to our environment and life in the ocean. The petroleum that is pulled from the earth is used for all sorts of different fueling purposes and is very important to our economy. Learning all about the risks and benefits involved with offshore drilling can help you to develop an educated opinion on this subject.
Offshore Drilling Pros
Increased Oil Production
Offshore drilling greatly increases the oil production and the amount of oil that we have to use for fuel and energy. This stimulates the economy and keeps our society going.
Offshore drilling requires many skilled people to operate the equipment. It creates an entire world of jobs that benefit thousands of people and their families. There are entire towns set up to revolve around and cater to the offshore drilling workers.
The oil drilling that happens offshore brings in an abundance of petroleum, a fossil fuel necessary for most everyday functions. We rely heavily on foreign countries to supply us with enough fuel to function. With offshore drilling we can gain a better state of independence and not be so vulnerable to outside influences.
Lower Oil Prices
If oil is being produced on home soil, then foreign countries have no say in the prices of the oil, which are often inflated. Transportation costs are also cut drastically with offshore drilling, further lowering the price for oil.
Offshore Drilling Cons
The equipment and rigs that are necessary to complete the process of offshore drilling is very expensive. It also takes a lot of people and training to efficiently and safely run these operations. These costs are often shifted down to taxpayers.
Major oil spillage from offshore drilling is a very real possibility, that has happened before. These spills cause catastrophic damage to the environment and marine life in the ocean.
High Carbon Emissions
The drills that are used to drill into the seabed cause a very high amount of carbon emissions to be put into the atmosphere. This impacts our environment and further contributes to the growing global warming problem.
High Risk Job
Working on an off shore oil rig is very dangerous, there are many risks involved including fires and drowning. The rigs are very far from emergency services, making it hard to provide quick assistance to a worker in need.
Food Chain Problems
It is inevitable that a small amount of oil is spilled into the ocean during drilling, this oil contaminates the water, which in turn contaminates the fish. It may start with the small fish, even plankton, but the fuel remnants will remain in them. As you move up the food chain, the contamination may dwindle, but still be present.