"There was minimal wildlife in these barren areas and, even then, the managers of the oil exploration went into great detail of all the steps being taken to preserve all of the wildlife in the area...and there were many."
"minimal wildlife in these barren areas" is not true, their are minimal numbers of species, yes, as is such in all boreal climates...species number per square mile is very low when compared to temperate or tropical climates...All the more reason to protect them from the vulnerability of intruders, because minimal species means it is easy to wipe them out by disease, habitat destruction or stress...
What has not been spoken of is that noise from drilling activities alters marine mammal navigation, social interactions, prey capture and predator avoidance. The land is not the only thing in jeopardy here..
Despite claims by the big oil companies that they can drill and have drilled responsibly on Alaska’s North Slope, spills are commonplace. At the Prudhoe Bay oilfield, reportable spills of oil products and hazardous substances happen every day and are compounded by the noise and air pollution industrialization brings. Shortly after drilling started in this area, the central arctic caribou herd shifted its calving grounds away from development, resulting in the use of lower quality habitats.
That herd is one of the species that is hugely abundant, but have very intricate and has unique patterns of reproduction...making their survival precarious at best.
The "managers of oil exploration" follow only government regulations , almost entirely, and in many cases do not. With the weakening of regulations proposed by Bush they will now have a much easier go of it..millions of dollars in fines have been levied against the "managers " for violations in the arctic regions, particularly in the Prudhoe Bay area...just west of ANWR-1002..
One regulation that is followed, is the legality of dumping byproducts into lagoons at the drill sites, it is absorbed directly into the permafrost, and being dark in color, absorbs the suns rays ..thus melting the permafrost...bad news for the soil and general health of the area...
..realistically, I never expect to change anyone's mindset, though it would be nice to be able to discuss the pros and cons of drilling in the Arctic. I think the cons far outweigh the pros...
Ok, to keep on topic is crucial, everything that is connected to the issue is a pro or a con...opinions based on facts are most important..
Opinions based on facts gathered by different sources that have to do with the topic....
*A leading expert on natural resources at the conservative Cato Institute said that Mr. Bush’s claim that we can effectively combat international oil forces by increasing our domestic production "is beyond nonsense.... It’s nonsense on stilts.... ‘Energy independence’ thus makes for good political rhetoric but inane economic policy.... they’re going to dominate the world market whether we allow drilling in environmentally sensitive areas or not."
(I think he was speaking directly at the ANWR issue)
*Vice President Dick Cheney says drilling for oil and gas would disturb just 2,000 acres of the 19-million-acre Arctic National Wildlife Reserve. "The notion that, somehow, developing the resources in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Reserve requires some sort of vast despoiling of the environment up there is just garbage," (NBC- "Meet the Press")
He took these figures from a 2001 proposal to legislate hr-4 which included this erroneous statement>
"Under the bill as passed, oil and gas exploration in the refuge is limited to 2000 acres."
This is the drilling base area only and does not include pipelines and roadways, landing strips and other construction/destruction.
* 1987 LEIS report:
Information gathered from the biological, seismic and geological studies was used to complete a Legislative Environmental Impact Statement (LEIS) that described the potential impacts of oil and gas development. This LEIS included the Secretary's final report and recommendation, as it was submitted to Congress.
The report concluded that oil development and production in the 1002 Area would have major effects on the Porcupine Caribou herd and muskoxen. Major effects were defined as "widespread, long-term change in habitat availability or quality which would likely modify natural abundance or distribution of species." Moderate effects were expected for wolves, wolverine, polar bears, snow geese, seabirds and shorebirds, arctic grayling and coastal fish. Major restrictions on subsistence activities by Kaktovik residents would also be expected.
*Congress and Clinton:
In 1995, Congress passed budget legislation that included a provision to allow drilling in the Refuge. Citing a desire to protect biological and wilderness values, President Clinton vetoed the bill, stating "I want to protect this biologically rich wilderness permanently."
This is getting long, I better quit now...Peace all....