Friday, April 22, 2005

House Okays Drilling in Alaska

The House approved a highly debated energy bill today, allowing for drilling in an Alaskan wildlife refuge. The bill passed with a 249 to 183 vote, stifling attempts by Democrats to raise fuel efficiency standards and reduce energy consumption.

Provisions of the bill also provide protection to companies that produce methyl tertiary butyl ether, a gasoline additive that helps it meet clean air regulations.

(srce) (thanks to SN reporter 'diggity' for this story)

My comments: While drilling for oil in a nature reserve seems like a bit of an oxymoron, the providing protection to producers of
methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) seems equally contradictory. While it reduces air pollution, especially carbon monoxide, MTBE readily dissolves in water, can move rapidly through soils and aquifers, is resistant to microbial decomposition and is difficult to remove in water treatment. The US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has classified MTBE as a potential human carcinogen.

Anyone'd think the US government are going out of their way to kill ppl and wreck the environment (nah, god bless ya, guv!). It seems to be a case of 'our beloved oil and automotive industry is going to kill you one way or another - we've just tweaked it from
death by global warming to death by cancer. That's nice of them.

You can read more on this at the
USGS Water Resources of California website.

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