SpruceRoots Magazine - December 2001

 

FACTS AND FIGURES

ABOUT OFFSHORE OIL AND GAS

"The excitement of the season had just begun, and then we heard the news. Oil in the water, lots of oil killing lots of water. It's too shocking to understand. Never in the millennia of our tradition have we thought it possible for water to die, but it's true." ­ Chief Walter Meganack, Port Graham, Alaska, 1989.

Number of years the moratoria on offshore oil and gas exploration, production, and transport on BC's coast have been in place: 33
~
Number of 'major' oil spills on BC's coast, outside the port of Vancouver, over the same period: 0
~
Number of oil tanker spills Environment Canada estimates will occur nationwide each year based on current levels of traffic: 100 small spills, 10 moderate spills, and one major spill.
~
Amount of crude oil, in litres, spilled when the Exxon Valdez ran aground on March 24, 1989: 2,000,000,000
~
Shoreline and intertidal habitat, in kilometres, oiled by the spill: 2,400
~
Salmon streams oiled by Exxon Valdez crude: 100
~
Estimated number of seabirds killed: 500,000
~
Amount, in US dollars, Exxon corporation ordered to compensate injured fishermen, landowners, and Native Americans by a jury in 1995: $5,000,000,000
~
Amount, in US dollars, paid to injured fishermen, landowners, Native Americans by Exxon corporation to date: $0
~
Number of Alaskan fishing boats repossessed by banks five years after the spill: 70
~
Highest percentage of spilled material ever recovered from an ocean spill with modern clean-up equipment and technology: 5
~
Recorded petroleum product, in tonnes, spilled on Canada's east coast between 1988-94: 20,000
~
Estimated number of dead seabirds found on Newfoundland's coast killed by 'mystery sheens' each year: 60,000-100,000
~
Percentage of landed catch from BC's fishery harvested in the area proposed for offshore oil and gas exploration: 50
~
Reduction, as a percentage, on catch rates caused by offshore seismic exploration: 50
~
Odds that a whale will remain in an area where active seismic testing is taking place: 1 in 5

Number of offshore leases affected by the proposed marine
protected area boundary around Gwaii Haanas: 0

Number of new jobs Chevron estimated its offshore oil and gas operations would create on Haida Gwaii: 0
~
In Prince Rupert: 27
~
Number of fires or explosions recorded on Chevron-operated oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico between 1956 and 1995: 65
~
Number of fatalities resulting from 40 'major accidents' over the same period: 19
~
Number of days required to contain only one of 15 Chevron blowouts: 40
~
Number of violations against the US Clean Water Act the Chevron oil and gas production platform 'Grace' was convicted of in 1992: 65
~
Litres of oil found leaked beneath Chevron's El Segundo, California refinery: 1,000,000,000.
~
Amount, in US dollars, Chevron paid the State of Texas in 1998 to settle claims it undervalued oil pumped from public and Indian lands: $18,000,000

There is still time to for you to add your voice to those against lifting the moratorium either by signing a petition circulating around local communities, or sending a written submission to the Task Force at:

Attention: Blair Lekstrom, Chair

Offshore Oil and Gas Taskforce
East Annex
Parliament Buildings
Victoria, BC
V8V 1X4

or email

<oilandgastaskforce@leg.bc.ca

If you choose to send a written submission please take the time to forward a copy to the Living Oceans Society. Living Oceans is concerned that in light of the Task Force's posture towards those in favour of maintaining the moratorium that their views will not be properly represented in the final report. You can send copies of your submissions either by e-mail to:

< oonagh@livingoceans.org >

Or by mail to:
Living Oceans Society
Box 166
Sointula, BC
V0N 3E0

SpruceRoots Magazine - December 2001