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Oils Well Does Not End Well

Date : Mon, 06 Apr 2009 15:08:48 -0400

For Immediate Release
Contact: Jeff Tittel, Chapter Director

April 6, 2009
(609) 558-9100



Oils well do not end well

It is currently easier for oil companies to build offshore rigs than it is for green energy entrepreneurs to construct wind farms. That has to change.


Atlantic City - The choice of how we use our oceans in energy policy is clear: it is between clean, renewable wind energy or dirty oil wells. Establishing clean energy offshore wind farms will help put America on the path towards energy independence while creating thousands of new, green jobs.


Allowing oil companies to drill is not the answer to our energy future. Drilling will endanger New Jersey's beaches and put off the necessary transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy.


"The location of this meeting is appropriate because we shouldn't be gambling on our future. Renewable energy is a sure bet," said NJ Sierra Club Director Jeff Tittel.


Currently, it is easier for oil companies to build offshore rigs than it is for green energy entrepreneurs to construct wind farms. "That has to change," Tittel said. "We must protect our coast from offshore drilling and make sure the only oil we ever see on our beaches is suntan oil."


The process of drilling for oil causes a tremendous amount of environmental damage that the oil companies won't tell you about in their fancy commercials.


First, drilling pollutes our oceans with chemicals. In order to move the natural gas or oil, water mixed with all types of chemicals is pumped into the ground while drilling. This process is called fracking. Eventually all of those chemicals come out, polluting our oceans. Second, when they strike oil, some of that is oil spilled into the ocean. Leaky pipes add to spills. Also, all of the underground pipelines and drilling equipment impact the ocean bottom and the biota in the ecosystem.


Drilling is not safe. Even drilling that occurs 90 miles away in Virginia will affect New Jersey's fisheries and beaches if there is a spill. Shell Oil Company said at a public meeting in December that they plan to pipe the oil from Virginia up to New Jersey. Drilling in Virginia would have a direct impact on New Jersey because that pipeline will run through our state.


According to the Coast Guard, there have been more than 2,000 spills or accidents in the Gulf Coast waters since Hurricane Katrina. In the event of a hurricane, the chance of an accident offshore or the rigs being destroyed increases, threatening our coast. New Jersey's coastal tourism industry is a
$34 billion a year industry. An oil spill would have a catastrophic impact on the state's economy at a time when we are already in trouble economically.


"When they say 'drill baby drill', they really mean 'spill baby spill'," Tittel said.


Drilling off New Jersey's coasts won't bring down the price of our gasoline. Since this oil will go into the world market, there is no guarantee that it will be sold in the United States. Offshore drilling has no impact on the price of oil or natural gas because those prices are set by the world markets.


Offshore oil drilling undermines New Jersey's ability to control greenhouse gases and move us into a green economy.


"This hearing is a moment of truth for the American People," Tittel said.
"We are either going to have a green economy based on renewable energy or we will continue with the fossil foolishness of the past."


The NJ Sierra Club wants to see a return to the offshore oil drilling ban that was put in place by George HW Bush and reversed by his son, George W Bush. "We're tired of the fossil fools in Washington trying to destroy our coast. It is time for clean and green energy," Tittel said.



Kara Seymour, Program Assistant

NJ Sierra Club

145 W. Hanover Street

Trenton, NJ 08618


(f) 609.656.7618



Received on 2009-04-06 12:08:48

New Jersey Sierra Club, 145 West Hanover St., Trenton, NJ 08618, USA
tel: 609 656 7612, fax 609 656 7618
or email Nicole Dallara, Outreach Coordinator, at

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