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White House: Bush to lift offshore drilling ban

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posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:43 AM
so what's to stop big oil from selling most or all of it overseas for a higher price (as they've been doing all along) even if they build additional refineries?

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:44 AM
reply to post by Shar

FYI, the major reason the Gulf of Mexico is so polluted is because of the silt deposits deposited by the Mississippi River. Down past 30 feet, there is no oxygen. There was a recent article on this; I'll try to find it.

reply to post by Pinktip

Originally posted by Pinktip

I'll ask this again......
pump all you want, where do you want to refine it?
We are currently importing 15% refined gas becasue of maxed
out refineries......02c

Valid point. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I would be in favor of having the federal gov't finance the refineries and then eventually sell them back to investors. Normally I'd say hands off to the feds, but this is a matter of national security.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:45 AM
Oh, yay! What a psychological relief! Now I can stop whining and get those nasty thoughts of a "recession" out of my head.

The problem here (if Congress let's this happen) is that the oil companies will continue to receive massive government subsidies and tax breaks and they will rake in their record-breaking profits and the price of gas will remain where it is or continue to climb.


posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:47 AM
reply to post by sos37

There are also plenty of other sources for the pollution of the gulf. One is the Mississippi River, which in addition to natural sediments (which dirty the water, obviously), it also washes all manner of pollutants in the gulf from the river itself and its various tributaries. And then there's Mexico, where I'm sure the environmental standards aren't too great.

So while the oil facilities may be playing a role, its not the only one and probably not even the largest.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:48 AM
reply to post by DocMoreau

Just remember the main reason for the lack of recent investment in refineries: the NIMBY attitude of environmentalists.

With the current economic situation, the jobs and income produced by more refineries will defeat those destructive attitudes.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:50 AM
reply to post by DocMoreau

I was just reading hte link you provided and thought this statement:

The largest five oil refiners in the United States (ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, BP, Valero and Royal Dutch Shell) now control over half (56.3%) of domestic oil refinery capacity; the top ten refiners control 83%. Only ten years ago, these top five oil companies only controlled about one-third (34.5%) of domestic refinery capacity; the top ten controlled 55.6%. This dramatic increase in the control of just the top five companies makes it easier for oil companies to manipulate gasoline supplies by intentionally withholding supplies in order to drive up prices. Indeed, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) concluded in March 2001 that oil companies had intentionally withheld supplies of gasoline from the market as a tactic to drive up prices—all as a “profit-maximizing strategy.”

really strikes home for me, it is an echo of my greatest concern over Bush's attempt to secure more land for the oil industry. That they are simply going to sit on this oil like they already are on tens of thousands of acres of oil leases in the USA while they continue to 'with hold supply' driving up prices to 'maximize profits'.

It makes me think of the book 'Damien' where towards the end when the war is begining his friend says to him somehting along the lines of "all this violence is the desperate last stand of the dying regime". I think big oil knows that there is an end approaching and they are doing their best to wring the last drops from their 'business' before it fails and they have to find the next 'black gold'.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:51 AM
reply to post by AtlantisAgain

They can do that, but it won't matter. Oil is traded globally. It would create an excess somewhere in the supply chain.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 10:52 AM

Originally posted by jsobecky
reply to post by DocMoreau

Just remember the main reason for the lack of recent investment in refineries: the NIMBY attitude of environmentalists.

I can assure you NIMBY stands for more than just, as you say, 'environmentalists' and affects about every walk of life.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:04 AM
I for one hope that the drilling does not take place. Hopefully the democrats in congress can block it. We are chasing a red herring with further oil exploration. It will solve nothing and only contribute further to our growing environmental problems. We need to be moving further away from an oil-based economy, not becoming further entrenched.

Believe me, the price at the pump is killing me right now, but it is forcing me to change my driving habits which ultimately is a good thing. I would like to see more money spent on alternative energies, but with an oil-man for president that is not likely to happen. Until we get rid of Bush, I hope the democrats can keep him out of ANWR and our coastlines.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:23 AM

Originally posted by Shar
I don’t see this as good news if it ruins the Florida coast line the way it has the gulfs coast line. Florida’s water is beautiful and blue. The gulf's the nastiest, ugliest, brown you will ever see. Warnings signs up not to swim or fish from bacteria levels. Which were like this was before the hurricanes.

The gulf is ruin because of off shore drilling. Fish constantly die and wash up to shore. Its really nasty.

Two things.

First, when I visit the Florida Gulf Coast near Fort Walton Beach, I enjoy what looks like aquarium water with colorful tropical fish and dolphins swimming nearby. Only times it wasn't like that was after a passing hurricane had stirred up the seaweed, etc.

Second, try taking a longer view of things for a change. The coastal areas thrive because of tourism. Tourism will die if gas costs $7 or more a gallon. Your cities and towns will also decline and/or die when that happens. Unless you have a job that doesn't directly, or indirectly depend on tourism (and what jobs would those be?), then your source of income is going to disappear, too.
IMO better to to have some oil platforms far off shore so you and millions of others can maintain your lifestyles than to say no drilling and watch it all die.

Think about it this way. If no one can afford to visit or live there anymore, then who are you "saving" the coast for?

[edit on 7/14/2008 by centurion1211]

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:30 AM
reply to post by jsobecky

I disagree. It is not the NIMBY/Environmentalist attitude that has prevented Oil Companies from increasing their refining capabilities, it has been the threat of Peak Oil, and the lack of future profits on the investments that could have been made.

Either way, pumping more oil off shore will have no effect at the pump for some time.

Currently, the United States' demand is already outpacing the capabilities of our refineries.

Most Recent Oil Consumption by country:

United States: 20,730,000 bbl/day
China: 6,534,000 bbl/day
Japan: 5,578,000 bbl/day
Germany: 2,650,000 bbl/day
Russia: 2,500,000 bbl/day
India: 2,450,000 bbl/day
Canada: 2,294,000 bbl/day
Korea, South: 2,149,000 bbl/day
Brazil: 2,100,000 bbl/day
France: 1,970,000 bbl/day

I also added up the refining capabilities for all US refineries from the list here:
Total Refining Capabilities: 17,244,801 bbl/day

Our demand outweighs our production by 3,485,199 bbl/day. The largest refinery in the United States by production is Baytown Refinery (ExxonMobil), Baytown, Texas, with 557,000 bbl/d (88,600 m³/d). We would need to build 6.25 refineries at least this size to meet/exceed our current demand.

Drilling offshore will not bridge the demand gap without more refineries. Nor will it do anything to supply for future growth/demand without more refineries.

U.S. crude oil production peaked in 1970 and has declined gradually since then. In 1970, domestic production of crude oil (including lease condensate2) averaged 9.64 million barrels per day (MMbbl/d). In 2006, total U.S. domestic crude oil production, including Federal offshore, averaged 5.102 MMbbl/d, a decrease of about 47% from 1970.

An important part of the equation is the value of the dollar. Building new refineries or drilling offshore is more expensive than it was at any time until now. The inflated costs of lifting out of the ground/refining the oil will be included in the price of a gallon of gas regardless.

Instead of taking the record profits and reinvesting in their infrastructures, the oil companies instead paid that money to their shareholders to a degree, but more often 'wasted' the money on 'gold leaf parachutes' for their CEO's retirements.
The most glaring example is that of Lee Raymond, of Exxon'Mobil fame.

\Exxon is giving Lee Raymond one of the most generous retirement packages in history, nearly $400 million, including pension, stock options and other perks, such as a $1 million consulting deal, two years of home security, personal security, a car and driver, and use of a corporate jet for professional purposes.

Oil: Exxon Chairman's $400 Million Parachute

I am sorry, but the plan to drill offshore is completely flawed, and does nothing for the American Consumer, and everything to further enrich the coffers of the Oil Companies.

Where does President Bush, John McCain, Rush Limbaugh and the rest of the proponents of more off-shore drilling in the United States plan on refining the oil they hope to find and then pump?

(Edit to ADD, the image is cut off where it shows the dramatic increase in the cost of offshore drilling...)(and to fix my link)

[edit on 14/7/2008 by DocMoreau]

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:30 AM
Ah, now it makes sense why he's even bothering with this.

The Congressional Ban expires September 30th 2008.

Bush's move is largely symbolic, however, because Congress too has a ban on offshore drilling and while it expires on September 30, it could be renewed.

Had he not done this and the executive ban remained in effect, Congressional Dems could've delayed renewing the legislative ban until after the election. By doing this, Bush has forced a major Congressional battle on the issue in the final month of the election campaign. With polls showing public support of offshore drilling at 70% or more, this is a very smart tactical move by the Bush administration to assist McCain and the Republican party this fall.

[edit on 14-7-2008 by vor78]

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:35 AM
Very interesting. I wonder how this will change Obama's and McCain's energy plans. Why the long wait, Bush should have done this when his brother was in office.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:37 AM

Originally posted by centurion1211
Think about it this way. If no one can afford to visit or live there anymore, then who are you "saving" the coast for?

So... unless it can make money for someone, might as well mess it all up.

Originally posted by vor78
With polls showing public support of offshore drilling at 70% or more, this is a very smart tactical move by the Bush administration to assist McCain and the Republican party this fall.

You beat me to it. I didn't know about the ban ending, but it's pretty clear this is meant to be a boon to McCain's campaign.

McCain Likely to Benefit

One in four likely voters (25 percent) said they would be more likely to vote for McCain if they knew that as president he would support offshore drilling in U.S. coastal waters just 4 percent said McCain's support for offshore drilling would make him less likely to win their vote, while 57 percent said it made no difference and 15 percent were unsure.

[edit on 14-7-2008 by Benevolent Heretic]

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:43 AM
Im totally for this but Im for it if there are a few strings attached.

A. 75% of that oil needs to be sold and used here domestically at a discount instead of it all being sold on the open market like it is now.

B. Get more refineries up. We have plenty of oil now just not enough refining power to refine it all.

Now this is all good but think of the people who live on the coastline ie the wealthy people. Do you think they are going to want this? That is the key question. But hooray we do need to get off foreign oil this is ridiculous we have to fight and die for oil when we have plenty right here.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:46 AM

Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic

Originally posted by centurion1211
Think about it this way. If no one can afford to visit or live there anymore, then who are you "saving" the coast for?

So... unless it can make money for someone, might as well mess it all up.

[edit on 14-7-2008 by Benevolent Heretic]

There are people enjoying the coasts right now whether they have drilling off shore, or not. Read what I said again - all of it. Here's a metaphor to help you understand. Remember the old saying "if a tree falls and there's nobody there to hear it, does it still make a sound?" Well, if the coasts are kept "pristine", but there's no one there to enjoy it ...

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:48 AM
reply to post by Benevolent Heretic

I wonder how voters would feel about offshore drilling if they were told that we do not have the refining capabilities for any more oil, foreign or domestic. That pumping offshore won't mean much unless there is a place for it to go to be made into gasoline.

Seems like some are asking that very question...
How long does it take to build an oil refinery and while you are at it, how long to build a pipeline in ANWAR?

Best Answer - Chosen by Voters

Oil refineries are a bit like light rays into space ,,they just go on forever,,,profound HUH! Well to be truthful they can take several(2-3) years before the first drop of anything comes out..most refineries we have in America today are very old and use Analog controls. To update a system to digital can take longer than building a new refinery..The other problem is where the thing CAN be built ...Nobody wants a refinery in their backyard...but somebody has to. So location is a big problem..The other bigggggg problem is the EPA and overcoming the red tape of their lot...In the refining of oil you get all sorts of things perking out that ,well, to be honest are a little less than good for Arsenic and Hydrogen Sulfide and Sesium...other heavy metals are free as well...So being compliant with the clean guys is a must...Everyone I know wants a new refinery so their gas will go down in price..Including ME...I wish we could build a few here in Texas the hayday of the oil boom Houston to Texas city was full of small Cracking plants ..Gasoline was made in batch style from Naptha and tetra-ethy-lead...and re-refined oil...those days are gone .Nowadays Gasoline is a blend of cleaners and de-oxidizers and anti-polutants .. the Octane rating is most often below 90 and a few years ago you could get 105 octane (high gravity) for less than 50cents...the cost to produce a gallon is a direct reflection on our use requirement. When my grandfather worked the fields in Pre-Boomtown days oil was a problem not a gold mine.. Then when boomtown came in the 30's oil was still a problem ...We made gasoline for the war effort and for our efforts oil was still a problem...Our economy flourished over the last 60 years and I'll be if oil is still not a problem...Big oil companies know YOU need it and they have it and YOU don't.... thats what drives the cost up...Our own demand...Well the pipeline question is pretty straight forward ..the US has already built the Alaskan pipeline and it made its debut in the late 70's.We built about thre-fouths of a mile per day...of mostly hand welded 48" good old American steel spiral weld pipe....Well there ya go ..have a good one from the E..

Hmmm... 2-3 years to get a refinery going. Our refineries use analog controls and would be more expensive to upgrade existing refineries than to build new ones.

The environmental concerns are completely valid as to location. I guess you are at least 15% (amount our current demand outweighs our refining capabilities) right JSOBecky, maybe more as our demand grows and our refining continues to shrink.


posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 11:49 AM
reply to post by DocMoreau

I understand that the refineries that we already have are not working at full capacity, but once they are, how will pumping more crude oil help the current situation?

The way I see it Doc, once we are producing our own crude we will decrease imported crude and simply refine our own.

How's that grab ya?


posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 12:01 PM
The last gift of the poppet to his masters the oil barons.

People are so blind and numb to see that this will not do a darn thing about the prices of gas at the pump.

But then again is all physcological

Bush has been so good to his master for the last 8 years.

Nothing but big fat greedy rats running our nation to the ground.

posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 12:02 PM
reply to post by DocMoreau

The truth is we aren't even using all the refineries we have available now. The oil companies have shut them down so they don't have to pay the price of running them. The truth is, we could have more gasoline at lower prices if the oil companies would simply fix and re-activate some of the shut down refineries. But that would cost them money...

But your average voter doesn't know that. This is from a year ago.


Record Failures at Oil Refineries Raise Gas Prices

Oil refineries across the country have been plagued by a record number of fires, power failures, leaks, spills and breakdowns this year, causing dozens of them to shut down temporarily or trim production. The disruptions are helping to drive gasoline prices to highs not seen since last summer’s records.

These mechanical breakdowns, which one analyst likened to an “invisible hurricane,” have created a bottleneck in domestic energy supplies, helping to push up gasoline prices 50 cents this year to well above $3 a gallon. A third of the country’s 150 refineries have reported disruptions to their operations since the beginning of the year, a record according to analysts.

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