Drill Baby Drill

 Posted by at 18:58  Politics, Republicans
Apr 292010
 

Gulf spill: Worse than Exxon Valdez?

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The oil leak triggered by a deadly rig blast off the coast of Louisiana has the potential to cause more environmental damage than the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill, one of the largest ecological disasters ever recorded, some observers say.

“As it is now, it’s already looking like this could be the worst oil spill since the Valdez,” John Hocevar, oceans campaign director for Greenpeace USA, told msnbc.com on Thursday.

“It’s quite possible this will end up being worse than the Valdez in terms of environmental impact since it seems like BP will be unable to cap the spill for months. In terms of total quantity of oil released, it seems this will probably fall short of Exxon Valdez. But because of the habitat, the environmental impact will be worse.”

“Probably the only thing comparable to this is the Kuwait fires [following the Gulf War in 1991],” Mike Miller, head of Canadian oil well fire-fighting company Safety Boss, told the BBC World Service.

“The Exxon Valdez is going to pale in comparison to this as it goes on.”

The spill was triggered by an explosion last week off the Louisiana coast that sank an oil rig operated by BP. Eleven workers are missing and presumed dead.

So far the leak from a blown-out well 5,000 feet under the sea is not nearly as big as the Exxon Valdez disaster, which spilled about 11 million gallons of oil into Alaska’s Prince William Sound 21 years ago. BP’s well is spewing about 210,000 gallons of oil a day into the ocean, the Coast Guard estimates.

But if the leak is not capped, millions of gallons of oil could spill into the Gulf of Mexico. The environmental impact could be disastrous if the oil reaches the ecologically fragile U.S. coastline.

Also see: “Gulf oil spill could reach shore Thursday night.”

Drill baby drill.
 

Earth Day 2009

 Posted by at 15:44  Politics
Apr 222009
 

EARTH DAY, 2009

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BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

The story of the United States is inextricably tied to our vital natural resources. As we enter a new era filled with challenges and promise, we must protect our land, wildlife, water and air — the resources that have fueled our growth and prosperity as a Nation and enriched our lives. Doing this not only fulfills a sacred obligation to our children and grandchildren, but also provides an opportunity to stimulate economic growth.

To achieve these ends, no issue deserves more immediate attention than global warming. Scientists have already observed alarming shifts in the natural world, including thawing permafrost, melting glaciers, and rising sea levels.

Climate change presents a serious test for humankind, but it also provides an opportunity for great innovation and adaptation. The United States has risen to such challenges before, and Earth Day inspires us to transcend differences among nations so we may lead the world in protecting our planet from this global threat.

Americans across the country are working hard to help limit the pollutants that cause climate change and reduce their impact on the environment, but we must do more. Individuals and organizations can plant trees, use energy efficient lightbulbs, drive fuel efficient cars, hold clean-up drives, and teach young people about environmental preservation. Small changes in our daily lives can have a big impact on our environment. Individuals can walk, bike, and use public transportation; buy products with less packaging; and recycle and reuse paper, plastic, glass, and aluminum more often. American families can also save money by choosing energy efficient products, turning lights off, unplugging appliances, and cutting back on heating and air conditioning.

Government and business alike must also take serious and sustained action to protect our valuable natural inheritance. Through investments in scientific research and development, and the vigorous pursuit of alternative and renewable energy, we can create millions of green jobs that allow us to reduce greenhouse gases and excel in a competitive global economy. My Administration is committed to increasing fuel economy standards and putting more Plug-In Hybrid cars on the road, weatherizing millions of homes, and catalyzing private efforts to build a clean energy future. My Administration is also working to achieve a comprehensive energy and climate policy, one that will lessen our dependence on foreign oil, make the U.S. the global leader in clean energy technology, and prevent the worst impacts of climate change.

President Theodore Roosevelt emphasized our obligation to future Americans, saying, “of all the questions which can come before this nation, short of the actual preservation of its existence in a great war, there is none which compares in importance with the great central task of leaving this land even a better land for our descendants than it is for us.” Heeding President Roosevelt’s call, and carrying forward his spirit of determination, we must commit ourselves to protecting our environment and ensuring the health of our planet so we may share the magnificent blessings of our Earth with our grandchildren.

We do this not only to acknowledge the environment’s central role in the development of our Nation but also to recognize the strong ecological interdependence among nations. History has shown that as we sow, so too shall we reap. Let us rededicate ourselves to a world that provides bountiful harvests for us all not just today, but for many generations to come.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 22, 2009, as Earth Day. I encourage all citizens to help protect our environment and contribute to a healthy, sustainable world.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-second day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-third.

BARACK OBAMA

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