Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Offshore drilling

Posted May 20, 2010

How do you feel about drilling for oil and natural gas off the North Carolina coast? It's an issue that comes up every time the price of gasoline goes up. I recall doing a dozen stories on the topic when I was the full-time enviornmental reporter for WRAL in the late 1980s and 1990s.

Certainly, things have changed with the backdrop of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Accidents can happen and the consequences can be disastrous.

A group appointed by the state legislature to look into the pros and cons of offshore drilling met this week with state officials in Beaufort. The group's conclusion was that more research needs to be done to make an informed choice. The group says estimates of oil and natural gas supplies off our coast are outdated.

What is your opinion? Should we push for drilling off the coast?


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  • Love it or leave it May 21, 2010

    Maybe if you actually read my post you would have understood what I was saying. I have no problem with solar, wind, etc. Its all great and fine with me but we dont yet have the technology there yet to turn away from oil. America uses 17 billion barrells of oil per day but only produces 6.5 billion itself. That leaves us depending on other countries for 10.5 billion barrels of oil per day. Dont you think that America should stand its own when we have the ability to do so?

    We should use more alternative fuel sources, but it would be ignorant to stop expanding the use of fossil fuels when it can help stabilize our economy and country, until we can depend on alternative fuel sources.

  • Celt May 21, 2010

    It seems to me that extremes on either side are unwise. Those who say, "Absolutely not!" seem to ignore the fact that we are a long way away from an inexpensive alternative. This would also prove a security risk, seeing our dependence on others for the energy needs of our country. I don't like tar floating up on the Outer Banks either--but they are not from the Gulf oil spill. On the other hand, those who say "Drill, baby, drill!" seem to ignore the fact that we are apparently not technologically ready to handle massive oil spills or mechanical disasters.

    At any rate, quoting talking points on either side does little to promote much needed discussion and consideration of all options.

  • br549znc May 21, 2010

    Yes, we should drill off the coast. If we have the resources we should take advantage of them so we won't be so dependent on foreigh countries. The possibility of an accident will always exist, no matter the type of energy being pursued. What we have to do is make sure we do a better job at mitigating risks.

  • 27615 May 21, 2010

    No more drilling! The consequences of an oil spill are not worth it!!

  • Riverracer8 May 21, 2010

    Absolutely not - just look at what is happening in the Gulf and the inability of all our wonderful technology to do anything about it. Wind and solar energy, yes - oil drilling, no.

  • CestLaVie May 21, 2010

    I'm pretty sure that, after decades of R & D, alternatives for energy have already been developed, but supremely squashed and bought out. THAT is why we are no further in this than we were decades ago.

    Same applies to MANY other things in this nation.....better things & ideas have been developed, but became hidden & threatened because the innovations went against the monied, storied interests. Let's get real here. Corruption & lies & following the for them.

  • budracing82005 May 20, 2010

    Drill, drill, drill...offshore, ANWR, shale, oil, gas...all of it! Also, continue private company R&D in to every other option (nuclear, coal, wind, solar, etc). Get big brother out of the way; THAT is competition and THAT is what will supply our needs AND drive down costs.

  • leeandkaren2 May 20, 2010

    Yes, we should drill off our coast. The sooner the better. Get to moving....

  • dgarygrady May 20, 2010

    @cwood3: Unfortunately, the oil industry's own most optimistic estimates of resources in U.S. territory and offshore waters indicate that even with no restrictions at all on drilling we simply could not supply more than an extra few percent -- if that! -- of our oil needs. We simply can't drill our way out of our dependency. The solution is exactly what you point to: research and development of alternatives.

  • Kathleen May 20, 2010

    No, we should not drill off the coast of NC. It is a short-sighted and temporary patch. Don't treat the symptoms--solve the problem. Our money and efforts should be focused on developing alternative energy sources. Think of the research that could be done with just the cleanup money from the BP spill, much less the money spent exploring and drilling there.




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