Environmental Consequences Of Offshore Oil Drilling

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Offshore oil drilling is a controversial topic because when oil spills, it does extensive amounts of damage to the environment. Countries capable of mining oil in the ocean reap the economic benefits in addition to reducing their dependency on external oil. While it is uncontroversial that offshore drilling is a massive boon for those countries, the environmental consequences of a spill also affect the economic welfare of nearby residents. Oil contaminates animals through a process called biomagnification, where chemicals progressively become more detrimental to the animals the higher they are on the food chain. When oil spills into the ocean, it impairs the growth of native species and deteriorates the ecosystem. As a result, the livelihood of people in the tourist industry, fisherman, and shrimpers is crippled and may take decades to recover. Presuming that a country has a coast it can use for drilling, excavating oil from depths of up to a mile is nowhere near effortless. In addition to common oilrig accidents, fires and spills, there are a plethora of problems that oil riggers can encounter including severe weather storms (like hurricanes) and inexperience in the remote oceans depths. Oilrigs are being used even deeper in the ocean creating new environmental and engineering problems. Dr. Joseph A. Pratt of the University of Houston, highlights the problems riggers encountered when drilling for oil in the Canadian sector of the Beaufort Sea; conditions were

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