For those who have helped in this effort, keep up the good work!

-- E Rothman (, April 18, 2002


For those you contributed to this're out of your mind! Check the local gas prices. Ready to buy a Vespa,with snow tires, or get on your 12-speed bike? I am presently doing a major portfolio on urban sprawl...I hate it. For those who have supported this blockage of drilling on 1% of the're nuts....but Sadam loves you! Remember this nonsense when the middle east blows up and the oil flow stops. Geeezzze!

-- Richard Boulware (, April 18, 2002.

Seems like much of the problem is urban sprawl -- that and lack of good public transportation in these sprawling urban cancers. (you think Denver is bad? have you ben to Houston lately? Or Atlanta?

-- Ellis Vener Photography (, April 18, 2002.

Whatever your take on this, one can hardly deny the fact that 640,000 acres is hardly a negligable impact by any scale. Yes, I know the Gov. only quoted 2,000 acres affected, but they didn't bother to count roads that would be built, and most land cleared. Apparently, it only counts if there's a concrete directly on top of it, hence the misleading figure. Gas prices suck, (as does urban sprawl, for that matter) no doubt about it, but I do believe there are better ways to work our way to a better situation than screwing up some of the last pristine wilderness for a finite amount of fossil fuel.

Besides, this is a photography forum, not a political debate...

-- David Munson (, April 18, 2002.

If you think gas prices are bad here, take a trip to Iceland sometime. Gas there hovers around $4-5 a gallon after currency and metric/english conversions. I believe the rest of Europe has much higher gas prices than here, as well.

-- Erik Asgeirsson (, April 18, 2002.

"Land cleared"? There's NOTHING there to be cleared. Those pretty pics shown by Greenpeace are NOT of the area where drilling will take place. And, in case you haven't noticed lately, neither the wildlife nor environment have suffered because of the North Slope activities. This is no difference. You may want to be dependent on Sadam, or those nuts in Venezuela, but I want some alternatives. And I DON'T want to go back to bicycles. 640,000 acres. What kind of nut came up with that figure - Tom "Puff" Daschile?

Yes, this is a photo forum. But, you don't make such unsubstantiated statements, THEN try and cut off debate. Too late, buster!

-- Alec (, April 18, 2002.

Those of us who contributed to this are not out of our minds. I filled up yesterday at $1.63/gal. here in Los Angeles. My vehicle achieves 35-37 mpg, and I believe that we'd all be better off were unleaded regular priced nearer $5.00/gal. That would put a large dent in urban sprawl and reduce the number of single-occupant 6,000 lb. SUVs (Stupid Useless Vehicles) that clog our freeways and fill the air with smog.

By the way, anyone who thinks drilling in ANWR would have a positive effect on anything is mistaken. An honest root cause analysis shows that urban sprawl, high gasoline prices and smog are all traceable to too much population. Until that is addressed, all "supply- increasing" actions will be outrun and futile.

-- Sal Santamaura (, April 18, 2002.

Quoting Russ Limbaugh or (equally brain dead but from the other side of the political spectrum) Amy Goodman always adds more heat than light to any conversation.

And exactly who tried to "cut off debate", Alec?

-- Ellis Vener Photography (, April 18, 2002.

While this is a photographic forum that should be devoid of this political rhetoric, there are several important points that I feel need to be made parallel on this subject of interest to the landscape photographer. 1) After trying for 20 years, WE STILL DO NOT HAVE AN ENERGY POLICY. Without it and the intelligent diversification to phase in alternative fuels and other forms of clean burning energy, we will continue to be held hostage by the Middle East. 2) Irrespective of your political persuasion, the economy is driven by energy consumption in the industrial and private sector. 3) We have as a nation been continuing to restrict use of fuel oil and encourage the use of natural gas that is vastly less polluting. 4) In a free economy, you cannot legislate or by any other means force a consumer to spend less of their disposable income on huge SUV's that get horrific miles per gallon. Inefficiency is what eventually illicits engineering or design improvements. Because of cheap energy, Detroit gave us what we wanted. Gas guzzling civilian tanks that places the priority on horsepower and speed versus fuel eficiency. From my perspective, the only way that the big auto makers will change course and get back to valuing the utilization of energy is when American consumers have to reach into their wallet for a "C" note for a tank of gas. And it will be here sooner than you think. As far as Alaska goes, I wish I could find all of the loonies that said the world would end when the Trans Alaska Pipeline went into service in the late 1970's. How the Caribou would cease to exist and it would create an environmental fiasco the likes of which civilized man had never seen. Well guess what, the caribou herds are the largest we have ever seen. The only spill recorded was from a mentally deranged person that shot the pipeline with his rifle. Fortunately, it was immediately located and cleaned up. Whenever I find a person that spouts this type of rhetoric, I ask them if they would put their money where their mouth is - Would they refrain from all forms of hydrocarbon energy indefinately to start to curb our insatiable appetite for oil (no auto, plane or bus travel)? The answer is always a resounding NO because it is our standard of living. We would rather ignore the situation than face the music.

Regarding natural resources, it is always good sense to intelligently exploit these in a balanced mode considering the environment. Ironically, the native Alaskans are a majority in favor of exloitation that unfortunately, will not happen for some time to come. Look at the bright side. Prior to 1974 and the oil embargo, thermal pane windows and pink insulation were not very popular. Shortly thereafter, they spawned entire corporations in fever pitch to conserve energy. We are about primed to go into another cycle of conservation as the good old USA continues to escalate our dependence upon foreign oil.

-- Michael Kadillak (, April 18, 2002.

I apologize if my position seems off the wall. I made reference to that figure because it came up several times in some research I recently did. If it's wrong, so be it, I apologize. I don't want to be dependent on anyone, Saddam included, but I also don't want to see delicate ecosystems put at the potential of risk so my neighbor can afford to drive his SUV a little cheaper. My point was just that there are better ways to solve dependence on foreign oil and the energy crisis in general than drilling in the ANWR. That's all- I don't want a debate.

-- David Munson (, April 18, 2002.

Glad you recognize [and appreciate] intelligent advocacy, Ellis. Surely you're not one of the urban nuts who thinks we ought to all move BACK into the cities, are you? Man, I couldn't target practice off my deck if that happened. Then, again, maybe I could!

I was responding to David, who made his statement then tried to change the subject.

-- Alec (, April 18, 2002.

Personally, I would *love* my SUV to run on hydrogen. Hydrogen fuel is a wonderful alternative to gasoline. Yeah, hydrogen bleeds out, but you just fill it back up again. A full tank would bleed out in a week or so. Most people use their vehicles more frequently than that.

Thus, no more oil drilling, the "energy" companies stay in business producing truly clean energy, and everybody goes home happy. Except Sadam....

-- Brian C. Miller (, April 18, 2002.


ok, for all the "anti-oil, there is a huge global (republican) conspriacy to destroy all things natural and good" photographers:

1) film is made from plastic 2) plastic is made from oil

therefore: shooting sheet film means you must be a selfish, oil consuming bigot who can't wait to invade Iraq and hates all creatures!

BECAUSE: if you were not an oil consuming bigot who hated nature, you would assuredly be using a digital camera, which uses 1% of the petroleum product compared with sheet film. Not to mention all the awfull chemicals one needs to develop said film.

can we PLEASE not have this debate on this forum???? pretty please?

-- Douglas Gould (, April 18, 2002.

I is always funny how many of the people who demonize oil and SUVs, are still driving vehicles with internal combustion engines. If you really feel that strongly about oil and the environment, why are you driving at all? Surely if you gave up your car it would help end sprawl and the crowded freeways and help the ozone layer. Think about it, the money that you save from not buying $5.00 a gallon gas could be better spent on getting yourself some much needed therapy.

-- Eric Williams (, April 18, 2002.

There are just too many people packed together in the big cities, and what bothers me the most about living in a big city is that in some of the neighborhoods I've lived in, you can go weeks, months, even years without seeing your neighbors.

Neighborhoods in the big city are becoming less than neighborhoods and seem more like parking lots these days. Gangs, drugs, violence, urban blight, carjacking, we all know about these problems, the thing that saddens me the most that I see everywhere are the endless numbers of kids going arund aimlessly who don't seem like they're being raised by anybody.

I'm sensitive to this obviously since I have a 4yr old son, and 6yr old daughter, and I see teenagers to 5yr olds coming and going with nobody to look after them. I've seen this in poor neighborhoods and in affluent areas, to me it doesn't make any difference where the parents are, the big city is no place for kids in any neighborhood to be wandering around alone.

We need to do something about this issue and the other issues that have been raised so that we can hand over a better legacy to our kids.

-- Jonathan Brewer (, April 18, 2002.

For starters, They are only talking about maybe 2% of the oil we need coming out of that area. Second oil is priced on the world market so prices most likely would not be that affected and lastly I'd be more than happy to pay more for gas if it meant saving the one state we have left that's still in pretty much a wild state. I feel I owe it to my children and there children.

-- Ed Candland (, April 18, 2002.

Is it a bit hot in here tonight or is it just me???

-- Per Volquartz (, April 18, 2002.

Lively debate.

Could I challenge you to bring your LFs up to the area? I think you might enjoy the photo experience, Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter. Visit both ends of the cultural debate on this issue (Arctic Village versus Kaktovik) and chronicle your cultural and environmental adventures. You could drop a few bucks into their economy and get a realistic view of the issues. You would afford credence to you viewpoint (either side) by being able to say, "I been there!" "I seen ‘em!" Bring your experiences home and champion your cause through photographic lectures or a fine art show. You are an LF photographer. Make a difference!

Or...stay where you're at and philosophize on how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, having knowledge of neither.

You find will one thing that Alaskan's do have in common is we are, at once, both amused and unamused by the views of Outsiders who think our lives are just like theirs. We enjoy educating them by showing them our state.

Now...are we back on the LF track?

-- Michael L Bird (, April 18, 2002.

I hate arguing politics, especially here - but you started it.

For a country boy (by that I do not mean just "not in the city", as in - midwest agribusiness, no land NOT plowed, "country" - ) I also grew up, and have spent a large part of my adult life in fairly remote areas of the west (the places you come to on vacation from whatever mega-lopolis...). In my 50 years I have seen first-hand the damage (and waste) caused by development and commercialization.
I have also heard all the arguments against industrial development of "sensitive areas". and I do not disagree with most of those arguments.
BUT - (you knew there was going to be a BUT.. didn't you!) -

More damage is done in one summer by tourists, photogs, hikers, bikers, et al. - to the wilderness areas of the mountain west than could be done in the ANWL in a decade. (and don't even get me started on snow mobiles, ski resorts, etc.,etc.)
The wilderness and high country areas of the lower 48 hold an immensely more diverse (and in sheer numbers of wildlife and foliage, exponentially greater), varied and fragile biosystem than you will find on the tundra!
Yet, how many of you do those things every year?
Do the posters in L.A., think about the Colorado River when they turn on that lawn sprinkler? (or why the City of L.A. really needs to pressure Congress to divert even more water - from the Columbia River, 1800 miles away?)Do they think about the death of the Salmon Runs on the Columbia when they order that grilled Salmon at Upscale Restaurant-of-the-day?
Do they think about the damage to the environment, air and water pollution, done every day by their city - by its very existence? Do you in NY, Boston, Houston, Denver?
No, because its too close to home. We can't come to grips with the fact that we are part of the problem. We poison our backyards, yet scream when someone wants to extract oil from a remote (and in terms of bio-culture - a desert) area.
When I worked in New England, there were mass-protests against a power plant being built in NH. Bostonians (who's demand for ever- increasing power production was the reason for the plant construction in the first place)formed an army of protesters - key among them, Jane Fonda - called the Clam Shell Alliance. Not many from N.H. -
The locals produced posters and bumper-stickers with a statement that pretty much sums up my feelings about the ANWL issue -
"Let the Bastards freeze in the dark!"

-- Matt O. (, April 18, 2002.

Thank goodness. Keep up the good work, Senate.

As to our long term strategic benefit with respect to energy, if there is oil in the area, it would behoove us to leave it there until such time as it might really be needed.

-- neil poulsen (, April 18, 2002.

If you're a country boy then maybe you can answer a question I've always been meaning to ask somebody. If someone finally decides to leave the big city, where do you go?

I've been to a few place out of the country, but I mean here in the states, is there a place to go to where they're not doing the things they do in the big city? Do those kinds of places really/still exist?

I'm a city boy so I'd like to know, if one ever decides to leave the big city, where do you go where they don't have some degree of the problems you've mentioned? I don't mean living like a 'mountain man', I mean a community, where you can raise your kids, and give them an education.

-- Jonathan Brewer (, April 18, 2002.

Sal said: "I believe that we'd all be better off were unleaded regular priced nearer $5.00/gal"

Hey Sal. You've got to be the posterboy for "Driving a Yugo"!!!!!

Why, I bet you even wish your TAXES were higher too, right?

-- Alec (, April 18, 2002.

Check yer email.

-- Matt O. (, April 19, 2002.

I don't know if this is really the right forum for this discussion, but I'm going to chime in anyway.

I live in Maryland and work in DC. Gasoline here ranges from around $1.60 to just under $2.00 per gallon. I usally buy in Maryland, where the tax on gasoline is one of the highest in the nation. Unfortunately I drive 65 miles one-way to my job, so I shell out around $50/week to keep gas in my Honda. I'm not complaining; just telling you where I'm coming from.

Oh, and I'm a moderate, so...

First to all you unltra-right-wing types, get off it. You are being manipulated by the oil companies, who are trying to convince you that we NEED to drill. Have you ever asked yourself why they feel we NEED to drill? Do you really believe that they have the country's best interest in mind? Has it ever occurred to any of you that the name of the game is PROFIT? Now, I'm not some anti-capitalist, but I do recognize that oil companies have NEVER had my best interest in mind when striking out on a new venture.

I would also say to those of you who are only regurgitating what you've read/seen/heard in the press to gather more information about the subject. Yes, it's ONLY 2000 out of millions of acres, but the significance of those 2000 acres is much greater than the Limbaugh's and Liddy's of the world would have you believe. First, those 2000 acres need not be contiguous. In fact, when totaling the area taken by a pipeline, only the ACTUAL FOOTPRINT of the pipeline need be considered, so if it is perched upon "legs" with "feet" of only a square foot or two, one could have miles and miles of pipeline and still could count it as only an acre of land. Obviously the impact would be much greater than that acre. Second, the 2000 acres referenced make up the entire western shoreline of the reserve, approximately 25 miles in length.

Now for all the left-wing, bleeding hearts out there: Didn't we hear this same argument vis a vis drilling for oil and natural gas in the Gulf of Mexico? And has anyone given any thought to what the alternative to drilling in ANWAR would/will be? Will there now be more wells in the Southwest? Or in the gulf? Did you know that the BLM has already allowed exploration to begin right outside Arches National Park? I know, I know, that's a lot of questions, but one has to ask whether it's smarter to move drilling to areas in the lower 48 that are MUCH MORE HIGHLY utilized in favor of "saving" an area that's rarely even seen by human eyes. I would also advise you to gather more information than just what's provided by Greenpeace, the Sierra Club and the Nature Conservancy. While I agree that these organizations have a purpose, I would also say that if we had listened to them in the mid-50s, much of the southwestern US would not have water right now. Sometimes sacrifice is required in the name of progress.

The success of the Senate is not and should not be measured by whether or not a proposal is passed or defeated; its success is measured by the fact that there is debate at all.

-- Chad Jarvis (, April 19, 2002.

"Sometimes sacrifice is required in the name of progress." - Please define 'progress'.
Is having more consumer goods than you have time to use progress?
Is being able to get clinically obese on cheap junk food progress?
Is driving everywhere and then having to use your free time and pay to use a gym in order to keep fit progress?
Is having leisure time, but nowhere pleasant to spend it progress?
Is having cheap 'gas', but having to commute 50 miles to work progress?
Is having a world economy that relies on an ever-increasing human population progress
Is the exploitation of 80% of the world's inhabitants by the other 20%, progress?
Is the destruction of the diversity of human culture progress?

And before you accuse me of being an unrealistic left-wing do-gooder: I want to see a more responsible attitude to the environment for purely selfish reasons. I don't want to spend the rest of my life looking at a cheaply built brick and concrete jungle, listening to the roar of traffic, breathing polluted air and eating tasteless food, thanks very much.
Besides, that constant haze of pollution really fucks up the quality of light in my photographs.

-- Pete Andrews (, April 19, 2002.

Pete, I'd answer Yes to all those questions, enthusiastically! It's called Personal Freedom. Its the reason we kicked your butts out over 200 years ago. Now, look at us, versus you. We're still advancing, while you're wearing out your fingernails trying to hold onto what you've got left, which isn't much. I'd say we made the right decision.

-- Alec (, April 19, 2002.

Peter, thank you for putting far more eloquently what I'd like to say.

If realistic means: 'well we want to have more so we use the earth till all is gone', than I don't want to be realistic!

Please: is all our wealth (or what ever we like to call it) enough reason to leave a mess to our children?

I always thought that we photographers knew a bit about beauty...

-- Wim van Velzen (wp.vanvelzen@!, April 19, 2002.

NO. It's called being a corporately owned sheep. You have the 'personal freedom' to do exactly what politicians and international companies want you to do.
I'm glad we no longer have the responsibility for looking after you lot.

-- Pete Andrews (, April 19, 2002.

Sorry Wim. That wasn't aimed at you, but at smart Alec.

-- Pete Andrews (, April 19, 2002.

Wrong email address in my last posting.

Alec: what if your neighbor's personal freedom means that he makes a hell of a noise in the middle of the night, burns awfully smelling stuff in his backgarden and has the singing birds for breakfast.

Is 'the pursuit of happiness' just the 'pursuit of consumer goods'?

-- Wim van Velzen (, April 19, 2002.

The pure greed to secure large portions of unused natural resources is what spawned the pursuit of the New World in the 1400's and it is the most fundamental tenet of the human economy. In a text book world, we surely would have been better as a human race if we used our intelligence to think beyond the end of our nose. Unfortunately, the only lessons we humans learn are those following aggregious mistakes. Without lumber that is harvested, minerals that are mined, petroleum that is drilled and water that is piped, we would be living in a cave. Politely ask a vegetarian photographer about their link to the meat industry (boiled bones to produce gelatin film backing) and you will see a face of disbelief and denial. I have seen the railroad cars of animal bones that Kodak has shipped from the packing houses in the West to Massachusetts. My point is that the more we embrace the realities of our human existance in the intellectual form and refrain from pure polarity on the issues we face to protect our environment, the better chance we have of making real progress. Spouting emotion only creates irrational behavior and takes us back to how our animal ancestors resolved disputes. Natural beauty is everyone's cause as we have the strongest economy in the world but at what price? How we balance the need to provide jobs and prepare for the world our children will live in will define out future. In a rather simplistic way, when I take my son with me to make make a photograph in a wilderness area here in Colorado, I feel that I have done a small part to make a positive impact on the future generation that hopefully he can feel passionate about as he grows up.

-- Michael Kadillak (, April 19, 2002.

It's funny... I live in a society (Sweden) where it is actually possible to get by without owning a car (even in the countryside, though admittedly harder). Gas prices are around USD$4/gallon, of which about 80 percent is tax, intended to keep car usage down. And it works. People use public transportation, urban sprawl follows the subway and train lines, etc. I used to live in Northern California, so I do understand that changing the American society to be less car- dependent would take a very long time, probably a generation or two. But it must eventually happen, so perhaps it would be a smart move to start the change sooner rather than later? I'd say that with gas prices above $2/gallon (used to be 85c), the change has begun, although most Americans have not yet accepted that. Keeping the gas prices down by increasing the supply - Alaska or not - will just postpone the inevitable transition. Better save the Alaskan oil for colder days. Best regards, Åke

-- Ake Vinberg (, April 19, 2002.

Fair enough Michael. Emotion alone will get us nowhere. Though I get emotional speaking about these things.

But there is more between living in a cave and in the way Hollywood prescribes. Just think about what you are doing. Is this buy really necessary, do I have to go by car, couldn't I do without yet another snack. You get the picture.

It is not just good for future generations, but for our personal joy in life as well. The food I cook tastes so much better now it is almost all bio-organic. It costs more, it tastes better and it 'feels' better.

And yes, sometimes I am lazy and go by car. Or stupid and eat another bucket of cookies.

I know this has little to do with photography (allthough the pursuit of consumer goods is very apparent here :-)

-- Wim van Velzen (, April 19, 2002.

Thanks for the e-mail Matt, you touched on something elemental to the debate, living a fuller and happier life by lowering you standard of living. Compared to other countries most of us enjoy a pretty high standard of living, and the folks who don't have money are still living like 'kings' off their credit cards.

Some folks here don't know what poor is, you go to some countries and poor means not eating for a couple week if you eat at all, not an old TV, a raggedy car, a place to stay and all you can eat like here in the states. I've been broke several times, flat broke, but I've never gone hungry. Here in the States you can live like a king while you put yourself in debt and I believe that is at the heart of the problem.

A while back my wife and I looked at what we were doing, we were astounded by the debt we had run up on our credit cards, we made a pact that we would quit using them except in an emergency, pretty much cash only until we paid them off. The more we reduced out debt the more fun life became. Our standard of living hasn't really changed even though we might have less, or rather our quality of life has increased.

Everybody is going to go through a period when they're broke unless you picked rich parents, I've been broke several times so don't bother with a thread about being broke, which you typed on your computer.

-- Jonathan Brewer (, April 19, 2002.


Are you using so much oil for your LF cameras? Sounds for me to much of topic! I think you are all in the wrong movie here!

-- Armin Seeholzer (, April 19, 2002.

Hey Michael, If I come up and we go out to where the oil is underneath, how many mosquito bites will I get for each 45 minutes of shooting? I hate mosquitoes! Best regards. Jim

-- Jim Galli (, April 19, 2002.

Although home with the flu today, I had to drag myself out of bed to see what's happened with this thread. Here goes:

Eric - Circumstances, in this case elderly in-laws who can't tolerate the elevation at which we're planning to build our next home, plus the inability to walk away from long-term retirement programs just yet without benefits being trashed, mean there's no viable alternative to an internal combustion engine driven vehicle for us at this time. I've taken reasonable steps to minimize my impact on the planet by driving a vehicle that achieves very high fuel economy and is rated as Ultra Low Emission.

Michael - I've been to the great land. Natives survived just fine without Europeans and a cash based economy before our invasion. I feel no compulsion to drill in ANWR so anyone can exist there in other than a subsistence situation.

Matt - you're absolutely correct about the "amount of damage done in one summer by tourists, photogs, hikers, bikers, et al." You underscore my point about greatly excessive population. I take this subject very seriously, and am childless by choice, again to minimize what we take from the planet. Our home here has no lawn, thus no sprinklers. Since forced to install living landscape materials by homeowners association covenents, I have planted low water demand xeriscape species and sustain them with a drip irrigation system. It's the least consumption possible without being fined for violating the rules.

Alec - yes, I wish my taxes were higher. Although we have no children of our own, I find it unconscionable that a huge cut in current taxes was enacted despite the massive debt our government carries. That debt is nothing more than a tax in advance on the children of everyone here who does have them. All I can offer to those who think taxes are too high in the US is what my late father would say to me when I complained on that subject: "May you pay as much in taxes next year as you earned this year."

Chad - just because BLM made bad decisions does not mean we should open ANWR.

Pete - were it not for the level of technical expertise you bring to actual photography posts (much greater than mine) I don't think we could be told apart. If I ever make it across the pond again it would be nice to meet you.

Jonathan - Americans (collectively) are a spoiled child. You are correct that most of us here do not have a clue what poor is. Yes, there are some pockets of real poverty, but for the most part "hard times" are perceived as not being able to get the loan for a desired new car. Stuff abounds, but enjoyment of life is in short supply.

While I don't display signs or bumper stickers on my vehicles, I do read those in front of me. One that provided a good laugh along with a possible way to deal with some of the inane attitudes around us was: "I feel much better since I gave up hope." Of course those of you with children might not like it as much.

-- Sal Santamaura (, April 19, 2002.

"we will continue to be held hostage by the Middle East."

Think it is the other way around, or don't you get newspapers in the USA Michael

-- adrian tyler (, April 19, 2002.

To those who are for the drilling: now, what happens AFTER you finally burn out the Alaskan oil? Plead to somebody who still has oil supplies (like Russia) to sell it at a resonable price? And what you are gonna do if they won't be "reasonable"? Declare war on them? You actually have to decide this right now. There is not much oil left on this planet.

-- Mikhail Arkhipov (, April 19, 2002.

Michael Bird had the best idea - why not come up here to Alaska and check out ANWR for yourselves. We can use the extra tourism. Sheet film is available in Fairbanks at Alaskan Photo Repair (Agfa - they also sell used LF equipment), Fairbanks Fast Photo (Kodak) and the University of Alaska Fairbanks Wood Center (Kodak and sometimes Ilford). Gas prices are about the same as outside (I think -- I walk to work and so have only bought one tank the last two months).

That's about all I can contribute to the discussion, since as an employee of the University (and therefore the State) of Alaska, I am forbidden by state administrative law from saying anything which might discourage exploitation of oil in the ANWR (even as a private citizen -- this is sent from home on a personally-owned computer)

-- John Lehman (, April 19, 2002.

Adrian: Clearly you understand my literary intent. When we import over 60% of our daily oil consumption from the Middle East, we are extremely vunerable to the changing winds of politics. When the rest of the Arab world equates our affiliation with Israel as sleeping with the enemy, how long will it be before greed for oil revenues is surpassed by sympathy for the poor and surpressed? In my opinion, we are dangerously close to a Middle East catastrophy that could bring our economy to its knees in less than a month.

As far as hydrocarbon resources in the world, you would find the projections of reserves for oil and natural gas to be 50-100 years in the future even at modestly escalated consumption trends. The key is the forward price model used to make the calculation. The higher a BBL of oil of an MMBTU of natural gas, the more technology (deeper water drilling, better seismic etc.) we can expend to explore for and produce it. In my previous life as a Petroleum Engineer I was intimately involved in these efforts. Natural Gas is one of the most important components of a Clean Resource model that we can use. We are quite independent from our Middle East dependency and its combustion byproducts are 1000 times cleaner than the cleanest fuel oil. In the United States mainland, we have just about found and recovered all of the oil that there is to find. Here is an alarming statistic. The best oil well only recovers 8-12% of the oil that is in the reservoir in primary production. Secondary recoveries (water floods) recover a bit more and tertiary floods (polymers etc.) may raise the recoverable oil to about 25% of what is in place. That means that we leave 75% (+/-) in the ground. We can recover more than 90% + of the natural gas from a natural gas field.

Alaska will not solve the problem all by itself. It is but one piece of a very dimensional potential solution. But without intense government funded research to discover a new source of universal energy, we are collectively watching the sand pass through the center of the hourglass. Have a good weekend.

-- Michael Kadillak (, April 19, 2002.

Pete, please note that I made arguments from both sides of the fence. Remember, I'm a moderate.

We won't rely on oil forever. Guranteed. And somehow I doubt the world will end before the alternative is discovered.

If you're not contributing to a solution, you're nothing more than part of the problem. Quit your bitching, and do something meaningful.

-- Chad Jarvis (, April 19, 2002.

When we import over 60% of our daily oil consumption from the Middle East ---

I heard on Nightline the other night that we actually use very, very litle Mideast oil in the states. I dont recall the exact number but it was way less than 20% of our oil. the reason we defend it is because our allies in Europe depend heavily on it. Thats just what I heard-dont shoot the messenger

At any rate, Sal is on the money. This great country is going to be on a world of hurt if we dont wake up and smell the stink of growth that has brought us much to be thankful for, but has become an unsustainable disease.

-- Wayne (, April 19, 2002.

In the year 2000, we imported a total of 53% of our consumed oil. 23% of it came from OPEC countries. The remainder came from Non-OPEC countries including Russia, Mexico, Canada Nigeria and many others. In the last two years with the growing economy, this import number has increased.

Check out the year 2000 numbers at:

Information is power......

-- Michael Kadillak (, April 19, 2002.

It looks like on average over the past few decades, that the Nightline figures were pretty close. Nowhere do I see 60%, or even over 25% of our imports coming from the Mideast. Makes you wonder what exactly we're protecting, doesnt it?

-- Wayne (, April 19, 2002.

Still can`t see what it has to do with LF!!!!

Go back shooting!!!

-- Armin Seeholzer (, April 20, 2002.

There are no simple answers :

eg Hydrogen when burnt becomes water = a great greenhouse gas = global warming. And where do you get the energy from to break down water to get hydrogen in the first place?

Some species have thrived around the Alaska pipeline some hate it.

etc etc

But if it is not easy to know the answers it is easy to know the questions eg Pete Andrews list. My list starts with 'Do I want my children and grandchildren to have as good a world to live in as i have?'

What has this got to do with LF ? I'd like landscapes of the future to be as good as the present ones.

-- colin carron (, April 20, 2002.

BTW, I love you guys!

-- Mark Minard (, April 20, 2002.

ok ! ok ! the environment is a subject I get emotional about. But when you think that in a few decades we could change the whole world's climate and get rising sea levels, more frequent and more powerful storms, more frequent el nino events, droughts, floods etc then perhaps that is not a bad thing.

-- Colin carron (, April 20, 2002.

ok ! ok ! the environment is a subject I get emotional about. But when you think that in a few decades we could change the whole world's climate and get rising sea levels, more frequent and more powerful storms, more frequent droughts, floods etc then perhaps that is not a bad thing.

-- Colin carron (, April 20, 2002.

I don’t own a car – I walk and ride my bicycle to get where I need to go, so I have no concern if gas is $.10 or $10 a gallon.

-- James Webb (, April 20, 2002.

I was expecting a discussion of LF photography issues when I stumbled onto this thread. How on earth did we hit upon this topic?

Knowing full well that drilling in the arctic refuge is not a complete solution to our energy problems, I'm still all for drilling there. I hope President Bush will skirt congress and pull something along the lines of an executive order to get the job done.

Drilling in the arctic does not mean automatic enviornmental ruin as greanpeace, and the sierra club et al would have you believe. Since the Alaskan pipeline has been in place, the caribou population has continued to flourish. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if their population is sufficient enough that the caribou farts start to contribute to the much overblown "greenhouse effect."

Relax Colin, pop open a tall cold one and enjoy life a little. The enviornment isn't going to change all over the world, just because we drill in Alaska. The climate hasn't been studied long enough to tell if a trend towards global warming even exists. Even if it did exist, is global warming aactually a bad thing? Is industrialized man to blame, or is it a naturally occuring event? I understand that the polar ice caps on Mars are melting too. I didn't know Mars had SUV's, factories or conservatives to cause global warming there. Do you think it might be the sun that is causing the warming? Na, guess that would be to obvious.

The USA has a strong economy, in spite of the nay-sayers, and we will continue to need new sources of energy to fuel our growing economy and population. Natural gas (other than Sals'), alternative fuels, and conservation all play a part in the energy picture; but for the short term, we need more oil, refineries, and power plants. Without more power plants spewing out tons of coal emisions, how will we ever power those tiny little electric cars? In the long term we definately need to look into other sources of energy, as well as superconductor technology to cut energy loss in power lines, and hydroelectric needs to be exploited more.

Those of you who either don't care or actually want $5.00/gal plus fuel prices, ARE YOU INSANE?! All levels of the economy will be adversely effected, even yours Sal. There are a lot of very decent, hard working people out there who would sufer from these high prices. Even those who drive the little rice burning 40mpg cars will sufer from hyper-inflation. Be careful of what you wish for!

Sal: I want to sincerely thank you for not having any children. I can sleep easy knowing that the gene pool is safe for yet another day :-)

-- Eric (, April 21, 2002.

Of course Eric, there are no enviromental problems! If there would be, we had to change the way we live. That is what we don't want, so there are no enviromental problems.

I guess this is what people call realistic?

-- Wim van Velzen (, April 21, 2002.

Eric - thanks for your well reasoned contribution. It's good to hear from those who keep an open mind, reach conclusions based on best available scientific evidence rather than wishful thinking, strive for an inclusive society, respect the constitutional separation of powers, and are always civil, sticking to issues rather than descending into personal attacks.

Were the US government to levy appropriate fuel taxes, resulting in gasoline prices rising to the level I described, there would indeed be temporary negative economic consequences for many decent, hard working people, including myself. I consider that alternative preferable to the path we're now taking. It is easy to conclude that, since ever-growing human population and its load on the environment has been tolerated so far, why worry now? The problem with this approach is that carrying capacity of the planet will be reached suddenly and irreversibly if we ignore the evidence and continue our exponential increase of exploitation and pollution.

-- Sal Santamaura (, April 21, 2002.

You don't know this man, so making a snide comment on whether he did or didn't have kids is wrong.

-- Jonathan Brewer (, April 21, 2002.

The USA has a strong economy, in spite of the nay-sayers, and we will continue to need new sources of energy to fuel our growing economy and population.


the economy, the economy, the economy. The economy, the economy, the economy. The economy the economy the economy. Growth, growth, growth. Growth, growth, growth. the econonmy the economy the economy. This is true patriotism! Who gives a flippin flop about anything but the economy and growth? This should always be the number one thing on our minds, always. Why should we, with more than anyone else, sacrifice one little penny that could be going into our pocket? Conserve? Develop alternatives? Sustainable anything? Nahhh! Hell, we could probably have even more money without these damn environmental regulations! The environment doesnt matter anyway, and theres nothing wrong! That *overwhelming majority* of scientists who say there IS something wrong are just angry because they arent on retainer by the oil companies. We dont have too much growth and too many people already, we need MORE oil use and people and growth to fuel our economy and growth, which will then grow more, and then we'll need more oil and people and growth to the fuel that economy and then of course more growth and more poeple and more...! This cycle then apparently continues, without end, in the small minds of those who support it. They think we can get bigger and bigger and richer and richer forever and ever.

Those who promote this endless growth attitude are apparently unaware of some very basic physical and ecological laws of this planet, and need to to be locked up for 6 months with nothing but an ecological economics book or two. If you really care about the economy, you should learn why we cant continue the way we have been forever.

We are not only economically healthy now, we are economically bloated and materialistically obese, and could stand to lose more than a little weight to help ensure our future health-or even just our future. Quite simply, we cannot sustain the madness of growth forever. Obviously some people, and oil companies, will never accept this on their own. Politicians will never address this pro-actively because its political suicide. It will only happen when the rest of us educate ourselves and realize the economic (and ecologic) fallacy and ultimately destructive effects of continuing to follow the endless growth mentality, and make it socially unacceptable. But we have been programmed to believe that growth is always good. We are so screwed up that it has become morally reprehensible to even suggest that growth and greed isnt desireable! In fact, growth has brought us many good things to be thankful for in the past, but there is NO reason to think it can continue in perpetuity, or that its drawbacks wont eventually outweigh its benefits. In fact, they already do outweigh its benefits for those who value open space, uncrowded wild places, wild things, and the possibility of a sustainable future in a liveable world.

-- Wayne (, April 21, 2002.

The First Drunk is an oilman... need we look any further for the real reason he is pushing this? His buddies will all get rich as will his family. No honest person spends $200 million to get a job that pays less than $200 thousand a year. As for gas guzzling SUV's. Just try loading a full sheet of plywood, a batch of 2x4's and a few bags of fertilizer in the civic & see what happens. I live in a relatively rural area and more than 70% of the roads in our county are dirt with a number of the towns having no paved roads at all. Some times of the year you don't get in or out without 4wd and at times you have to wait a day or two for the roads to clear up a bit to travel them. Anytime I head out to Grouse Creek, Yost or southern Idaho or northern Nevada I have to take overnight gear just in case the weather gets feisty. Jarbidge, Nevada is so isolated you can't even get to it from Nevada roads 7-9 months out of the year. So yes, some of do use SUV's or trucks because we have to. The rest of the time I drive a VW diesel (82 model) that gets around 50 mpg and is light enough that it is easier to tow or dig out of the snow when the inevitable happens. In spite of the ads, AAA does NOT tow you even when you get stuck in a snowbank in downtown Lynn, Utah. (I know it is downtown as there are two buildings within a quarter mile).

If I could do it with an electric car, I would. If I could use hydrogen, I would as I have seen & driven hydrogen powered cars & they are great... just no place to fill up in Almo, Idaho or Gold Hill, Utah or the middle of nowhere. So, we are stuck with gas & diesel for the present.

As far as all the statistics we keep repeating, a federal study shows that 74.4 percent of statistics are made up as needed while the other 50% are wrong.

I bet if we made all government employees take public transportation we would save a lot more oil than with any other proposed solution.

-- Dan Smith (, April 21, 2002.

Here's some statistics for ya....30% of the worlds natural resourses have been destroyed since 1970.The seas are in severe decline.Dont eat too much fish...esp the kids...unless you like mercury....that is if you can find the fish .Cancers on the rise...overuse of chemicals in food and animal feed.Disease on the rise...overuse of antibiotics.Rise in childrens asthma ...cause....air pollutants.General overall suffering of humankind... poverty/jobless/starvation....cause...overpopulation...which is directly or indirectly related to all the problems of humanity both physically and psychologically. Time to wake up! If you cant work for a better planet for altruistic reasons do it for greedy you really want your children and grandchildern to live in a garbage dump?

-- Emile de Leon (, April 22, 2002.

Hi all

I know there are many economical and also money oriented problems on the world. But for example the USA is not behind the Kyoto protocols and tid not sign them up! So everything should be fine in USA, isn`t? But it is not a political forum here!

-- Armin Seeholzer (, April 22, 2002.

I am so glad this isn't a usenet forum...

-- Ellis Vener Photography (, April 22, 2002.

The fact of the matter is that the ANWR debate in Washington is simply a political game that's being played by each party to earn points for their side. I don't believe for a second that either party really gives a rats a** about ANWR or its oil; they're just looking to mollify their constituents.

Politics aside, the unfortunate aspect that's being ignored is that defeating drilling in ANWR simply shifts the focus to other areas. Here's one of the headlines from my local rag yesterday:,1299,DRM N_4_1097366,00.html

Again, I doubt anyone in Washington really cares about the outcome. You can bet they'll act like they do at their conventions though.

-- Tim Klein (, April 22, 2002.

Well, I doubly hosed that one up!

(screwed up the HTML AND I used the wrong link)

Try this:

Rockies eyed as plan to drill oil-rich refuge heads to defeat

-- Tim Klein (, April 22, 2002.

Good grief - have you guys never heard of the word "TROLL"? Note the guy who started this never replied to any other posts - he just sat back and had a good chuckle...

-- No One (, April 25, 2002.

So you're saying this guy is short, ugly, and lives under a bridge!??

-- Tim Klein (, April 25, 2002.

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