The last time Shell tried to drill for oil in the Arctic, its Kulluk drilling rig drifted out of control and slammed into Alaska’s Kodiak Islands with 150,000 gallons of toxic diesel fuel on board.
Shell’s next Arctic drilling mishap could be much worse – and it could happen as soon as next year.1
The Interior Department is considering a plan to allow Shell to drill for oil in the Arctic in 2015 despite the Obama administration’s own analysis showing a 75% chance of a disastrous oil spill if the plan moves forward. The Interior Department’s crucial public comment period ends on December 22, so we need to act fast to keep Shell out of the Arctic.
Tell the Interior Department: No Arctic drilling! Submit a public comment now.
CREDO activists have been fighting to stop Shell’s Arctic drilling plans for years. Twice now – once during the Bush administration and once during the Obama administration – federal courts have invalidated the Interior Department’s sales of leases for Arctic drilling due to poor science and faulty economic assumptions. But Shell has continued pushing for drilling rights – and the Obama administration is now poised to give Shell the green light for drilling once again.
Just this month, the contractor that operated Shell’s Kulluk drilling rig agreed to plead guilty to eight felonies for environmental and maritime crimes and pay more than $12 million in fines. Worse, a U.S. Coast Guard report on the incident released in April found that Shell made the decision to tow its rig away from Alaska through icy waters in December 2012 – which led to the rig running aground ¬– in order to avoid millions of dollars in tax liabilities.2
According to the Interior Department’s analysis, an oil spill in the Arctic could kill countless endangered beluga whales and polar bears, and thousands of seals.
But even without a massive oil spill, allowing Shell to drill in the Arctic would be disastrous. The Arctic Ocean is estimated to hold 13 percent of the globe’s undiscovered oil and 30% of all undiscovered natural gas, so there is simply no way to keep climate change from spiraling out of control without putting a stop to Arctic drilling.
Submit a public comment now: Stop Shell from drilling for oil in the Arctic Ocean.
1. "Shell Oil renews plan to drill Arctic waters after 2012 debacle," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 28, 2014.
2. "Coast Guard Blames Shell Risk-Taking in Kulluk Rig Accident," National Geographic, April 4, 2014.