Home > The Economy and the Planet > The high cost of high profits

The high cost of high profits

from David Ruccio

The oil and gas industry knowingly endanger its own workers, the environment, wildlife, and communities in states across the United States—all in pursuit of high profits.

The National Wildlife Federation has just issued a report, “Assault on America: A Decade of Petroleum Company Disaster, Pollution, and Profit,” in which it explains that major oil spills (such as the ongoing BP spill) are really only a small part of the real story.

From 2000 to 2010, the oil and gas industry accounted for hundreds of deaths, explosions, fires, seeps, and spills as well as habitat and wildlife destruction in the United States. These disasters demonstrate a pattern of feeding the addiction to oil leaving in their wake sacrifice zones that affect communities, local economies, and our landscapes.

Here’s a map of accidents and spills in the past decade: 

In a related story, today’s New York Times explores the many ways the Gulf of Mexico has been damaged—by oil and drilling fluids spilled from pipelines, vessel traffic, and wells; by runoff and waste from cornfields, sewage plants, golf courses, and oil-stained parking lots that drain into the Mississippi River from vast swaths of the United States, and then flow down to the gulf; by the dumping of bombs, chemical weapons, and other ordnance in the middle of last century; and by slicing up and drastically engineering the wildlife-rich coastal wetlands of Louisiana for oil and gas exploration, shipping, and flood control.

Forget foreign oil. How long will we continue to pay the cost of high profits for the capitalist oil and gas industry in the United States?

About these ads
  1. No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 9,520 other followers