In response to the letter from Ed Welge whom we all know as a retired engineer and a current front man for the petro chemical industry, I say, yes, Mr. Welge, it is time for a change.
However, given your stated lack of concern for our environment over the years in many of your letters and your belief that our dependence on, and use of, petroleum oil is not part of the reason we are experiencing climate change, coupled with your belief that any problem related to drilling for petroleum can be solved by a really good engineer, I doubt that you and I are going to agree on what that change should be.
So, having heard your point of view, as in “drill baby, drill” I feel a statement regarding a less harmful and more permanent solution to our unemployment, budget shortfalls, and energy needs should be expressed.
To that end, please consider this: sea level is rising, the ice caps are melting, and our air is about as polluted as we can handle and still have life on this planet, and all of this is directly related to the heavy use of petroleum worldwide, and, none of these problems will get any better until we start using energy produced by non-polluting sources. Therefore, I suggest that we not drill for oil anymore. How about instead we invest in clean and sustainable energy sources? By the way, petroleum is not a sustainable resource, it is a finite resource. When it is gone, it is gone forever, but, solar energy, wind energy, tidal energy and bio-gas energy will be with us to infinity, and, unlike petroleum, they are all clean energy.
I surmise by your letters that you actually believe that more oil can be produced without causing severe and potentially irreparable environmental damage, so I ask that you simply look at the events of the recent past before you expound on the topic further, and I cite the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico as only one example of engineering failure, coupled of course with corporate greed, which has wreaked havoc on the environment of the gulf region and beyond, and will continue to do so for the next 200 years, or longer.
Just imagine what harm a similar spill like the gulf spill would cause in a pristine place like, say, the ANWAR region of Alaska.
I know, you want to drill there too, and you’re willing to take the risk, because after all, you are an engineer and you think you can do it, but, what about the rest of us who prefer that ANWAR remains in the condition it is in now and are not willing to take that risk? Do we not count in the overall scheme of things? Or do ever increasing corporate profits for the oil companies matter more?
Now, if it were not for the fact that you promote more drilling through your letters I would find them quite amusing, however, the mindset that brought on the gulf oil spill is apparently also your mindset, and I find that thought process disturbing.
If you really want to help, if you really want to see more jobs available and a strong economy as a result, not to mention a cleaner, safer, healthier planet, why do you not use your talents as an engineer to figure out how to harness and use natural energy and help get planet earth off its oil addiction?
I’ll bet you are up to the challenge.