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Not a good time to drill, baby, drill
Courier editorial
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Just a few weeks ago, most seemed glad to hear that President Barack Obama planned to open up areas off the Atlantic — and Georgia — coast to offshore drilling for oil. But there should be some second thoughts and careful assessment in the wake of the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, which is getting worse by the day.
According to the Associated Press, this oil spill could be the worst environmental disaster since the tanker Exxon Valdez ran aground in 1989. The resulting oil spill put 11 million gallons in Alaska’s Prince William Sound, and the resulting damage to the environment and images of oil-coated wildlife stoked anger worldwide.
That story is far from over. Alaska is still feeling the impact some 21 years later, and not just environmentally. It’s also had a severe economic and psychological impact on fishermen who saw their livelihoods lost after generations spent earning a living from the sea. What’s more, even two decades later, there are reports that thousands of gallons of oil remains in the sound, a continuing threat to marine life and the area’s natural beauty.
This time, it could be worse.
The oil bubbling into the Gulf of Mexico off Louisiana’s coastline has the potential to eclipse the Exxon Valdez disaster, the Associated Press is reporting.
That alone should be enough sober up anyone who thinks the answer to our energy problems is simply to “drill, baby, drill.” And if what happens to Louisiana or what happened to the Alaska coastline 21 years ago isn’t enough to make people think twice about offshore drilling, think about it this way. In other words, wait, baby, wait. Let’s take a harder look at this issue.
The spill in the Gulf is spewing an estimated 200,000 gallons of oil into the water every day. Imagine that somewhere off the Georgia coast that oil slick heading for Sunbury Creek or Half Moon Marina, St. Catherines Sound or any of our many saltwater creeks and estuaries? Is saving a few bucks at the pump worth that?  

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