Shell gets chance for exploratory wells off Alaska


The keys to vast reserves of oil off the coast of Alaska may have been handed to Shell this week after President Barack Obama's administration granted it provisional permission to drill exploration wells in the Beaufort Sea's frigid waters despite fierce opposition from environmentalists.

"This is a disaster waiting to happen," said Holly Harris, a lawyer for Earthjustice, one of several groups decrying the approval by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement of Shell's drilling plans for the region off the northern edge of Alaska. "Today's decision is nothing more than the administration's decision to roll the dice with the Arctic."

Shell's plans to drill in the Atlantic Arctic were well advanced when the BP disaster struck in the Gulf of Mexico last year and all ocean-drilling projects in US waters were effectively put on hold. The energy giant must still secure a bevy of sub-permits to be able to meet its goal of starting drilling next summer.

I am sure the environmental wackos will still try to thwart the effort. Their light switches should be taped in the off position and their cars put up on blocks.


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