September 18, 2012
Shell has been forced to abandon its offshore drilling efforts in the Chukchi and Beafort Seas due to a series of setbacks. The most recent setback involves problems with the oil containment barge, the Arctic Challenger. While held up by the US coastguard in Bellingham, Washington, the vessel was cited for illegal fluid discharge. Although Shell will continue to drill top holes, they will be unable to drill to any oil deposits.
The L.A. Times reports:
“Shell Alaska said Monday it has abandoned its efforts to drill into hydrocarbon deposits in the offshore Arctic after the latest in a series of glitches on the company’s troubled oil containment barge resulted in damage to the high-tech dome designed to contain oil in the event of an underwater spill.
Company officials said they will continue to drill “top holes” off the Alaskan coast through the end of this season’s drilling window, but will not attempt to reach any oil deposits this year — a serious but not fatal setback for the company, which has spent six years attempting to explore its outer continental shelf leases off the coast of Alaska.”
Read the full article at the LA Times.
Subhanakar Banerjee, editor of Arctic Voices: Resistance at the Tipping Point, says about the news, “It is not that often we get to share a good news about the environment. But by staying engaged, telling the truth, and exposing lies and deception, and working together, at times our voices are heard.” To read more from Banerjee, check out his website, ClimateStoryTellers.